Saturday Morning Pancakes

’Tis the season for lazy Saturday mornings when there’s nothing better than imperfect pancakes by a cozy fire. We always seem to be on the run every other day of the week, so when it comes to breakfast, I try hard to reserve Saturday mornings for something special. Gluten-free and bursting with a fresh, nutty flavor, don’t hesitate to enjoy these pancakes for lunch or dinner too. Kids always seem to be the pickiest eaters, and raising vegetarian kids is no exception. Perhaps that’s why breakfast is their favorite meal.

It seems like stories abound during the holiday season, and I seem to find myself sharing tales from my childhood with my own children; as I reminisce about waking up to the smell of pancakes, I reflect about how the stories of sharing food with family can evoke so much emotion. The smell of mom’s kitchen never goes away, no matter how many years pass by.

Tales of healing with food date all the way back to the time of hypocrites when a so-called “alternative” group of people believed that food could prevent disease. How far-fetched to believe that people developed rituals as they broke bread together and gathered in appreciation of one another and their bounty. According to The American Institute for Cancer Research, health experts agree that “putting mostly plant foods on your plate is the healthiest diet.” Because these types of food are high in antioxidants, healthy fiber, essential vitamins and minerals and protein, a plant-based diet promotes proper bodily functions and healing. I don’t believe it’s far fetched at all to believe that food prevents disease, it’s just a matter of educating people about the connection.

My family made the switch to a whole-food, vegetarian diet 6 years ago, and what has occurred since then is just the beginning of a powerful journey and desire to help educate others about why we made the switch. If you haven’t yet given the topic much thought, I would encourage you to contemplate the impact that nutritionally controllable disease has on our society. It’s time that we all take a stand, even if through simple efforts such as offering a tray of vegetables instead of a bag of cheese curls at the next party.

With the help of several local CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture) I started to bring new and diverse plants into my kitchen, planted my own garden, and felt more connected to the environment than I ever have.

My children have embraced growing up vegetarian, and I truly believe that it’s the simple rituals we embrace, like Saturday morning pancakes, that will help them carry on that warm and healthful feeling of nostalgia through the smell of “mom’s kitchen.”

1/2 cup oat flour
1/2 cup gluten-free all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup pumpkin pie filling
maple syrup

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