Monday, August 20, 2012

Pancakes for Lunch

Well, it's been one of those days. The kind where you get that annyoing little black cloud following you around and everything seems to get you really emotional. Your iPod is on shuffle, and it seems to pick the very songs that are guarenteed to make you cry. Your dishwasher didn't work so you end up eating things straight from the container with plastic utensils. All the shampoo is gone so you scrub your hair with bar soap (it only seems to make it more greasy... who's with me?) You can't find anything that you're looking for and all the sudden you've been looking so long that you don't even remember what it was that you were looking for. Uggh. Oh, and did I mention that it was cloudy outside again?

So I started the day on the wrong side of the bed to say the very least. But that's no way to live life. Frowns never helped anyone. And, as one of my absolute favorite quotes puts it, "Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim." (Nora Ephron) So I decided to stop looking for all the reasons that the day was going to stink and making reasons that it would be good.

This may seem like a really cheesy post, but believe me, it took years for me to discover that fairly obvious key to living happily. It's time for a blog reality check. In other words, putting myself out there again; being a heroine and not a victim. Nothing was ever gained from hiding. Well, reader, this blogger has a long and turbulent history of mental illness. The works. Anorexia Nervosa, Anxiety Disorder, Manic Depression, Passive Suicidal Thoughts... And I still struggle. The world can be a pretty harsh place. I always used to use that as an excuse to give up and draw into myself, thinking that if the world was so cruel it didn't deserve me, nor I it. Of course, there are way more to all my mental illnesses than that, but you get the picture...

So here's the thing. No matter what you are going through, you will encounter obstacles. You will feel beaten, unhappy, dissatisfied, and bitter. But you will also have those flashes of pure joy and glee. Make them worth it. Take the not-so-great days and doctor them up with a little bit of love. Because we only get so many chances to start a new day (on average, 25,550 for an American). Don't waste them hating yourself or your body or other people. It won't do anything but push you farther down into that pit of despair.

Instead, look for something meaningful. And if nothing seems that way, try something fun. And if nothing sounds fun, at least eat something that will be good and nourishing. I find that when I'm grouchy, it's often because my body needs some good old-fashioned treats (I'm no physchologist or nutritionist YET, but that's just my opinion here. Indulge once in a while. It helps.)

So sometimes that means 'breaking the rules' a bit.

Like having PANCAKES for lunch.
VERRY BERRY PANCAKES to be specific.

Perfection :)

Because obviously you didn't get enough berries yesterday with the Summer Lovin' Salad. Clearly I didn't (and the fridge still isn't fixed!) Now, I was pretty nervous about making these. I've never invented my own pancake recipe before. I can be a good cook... when I follow directions. But, like I said, today was a day to break out of my comfort zone. So I went for it. And amazingly, they were not only EDIBLE, but they were pretty good. Especially warm, spread with blackberry jelly and a little bit of coconut butter. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Here's what you need to do:

On the griddle

VERY BERRY YOGURT PANCAKES (High Protein, Whole Grain)
1 flax egg (1 T. whole flax seeds+ 1/4 c. water)
1- 5.3 oz container strawberry Greek yogurt (or blueberry/blackberry...even vanilla)
1/2 c. rolled oats
1 tsp baking soda (I think it could be reduced. Probably go with 1/2 tsp)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tablespoon Blueberry or Strawberry Syrup
2/3 cup water/almond milk
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder (can omit. Just reduced water/milk to 1/3 c. or so)
Optional: Cut up berries or nuts

Combine flax egg, yogurt and oats in blender or food processer. Pulse and blend until oats and flax are all ground up and everything is nicely mixed. Add baking soda, vanilla, syrup, water, and protein powder. Mix again, probably another 1 minute until everything is well blended and there are no chunks. Drop by 1/4 cup fulls onto griddle or skillet at 300 degrees. Be sure to grease/spray skillet first. If using berries and nuts, throw on top of each pancake now. Allow to bubble, but DO NOT TURN OVER until pancakes start appearing tan. You can test if they are ready to flip by nudging spatula underneath and seeing if pancake stays together. They should fluff up quite a bit. Flip and cook until done. They DO take a while... I will work on that. When fully cooked (ie staying together and looking a deep brown) put on plate and serve. I recommend spreading them with jam and coconut butter, as stated before. You could also put in additional berry-flavored yogurt and roll them up for a little portable crepe.
*Makes about 9 pancakes. Can be 1 REALLLLY big serving, but serves 2-3 generally. Whole recipe only has about 500 calories!*

Look how FLUFFY I am!

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