Sunday, April 5, 2015

Cooking by Hand

Ingredients:
Pull open the curtains and let the sun slip in slowly, casting warm blankets across the living room floor as you snuggle deep into the couch, little bodies crowding next to you to watch Saturday morning cartoons. When tummies start to grumble, after you've scanned the New York Times while sipping coffee black, pull the stool to the kitchen counter.  Let little hands reach up to measure and mix.

  • 1 1/4 cup almond flour more or less, measured by dumping at least 1/3 of a cup onto the counter when chubby fingers are not big enough to hold tight to the canister. Just brush the excess into your mixing bowl. It will be the perfect amount.   
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour, which smells too good not to play with. Let those little hands sift the almond and coconut flour together. 
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, measured by slipping the spoon into the orange box and pulling it tight against the lid to get the precise measure. Why is it called soda, mommy? It doesn't fizz. 
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt poured into the cupped creases of his hand. But how do you know this is the right amount? You just know. Like my mom would say.
  • 1 cup full fat coconut milk, but don't panic when you forgot to purchase it the day before.  Pull the 2% milk out of the fridge. Improvise.  
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed vigorously with a fork. This is the best part. Those little hands and arms will smash and swirl to pull the fork through the banana mush, and you'll end up with chunks of banana on the counter and maybe in your hair. He'll look up at your with those big blue eyes and not even have to speak the words. Just one finger full? 
  • 3 large eggs but you might need 4 and a spoon as well.  That first egg will end up split entirely in two, egg shell raining down into the pancake batter and the yoke sliding across the kitchen counter. He's excited to crack the eggs. A little too excited. The spoon will help him fish out the shells and the extra egg will give him an opportunity to try again.
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract will remind him of making cookies. It's what you smell like, mommy.
  • coconut oil to grease the griddle, making it easier to slip the spatula underneath and flip the pancake. This takes practice. His first few attempts will end up crumpled and lumpy, but he will keep trying. And with your hand on the spatula to help guide, he will flip the perfect pancake. And soon, he will not need your hand as support. You will step back and watch as he becomes the master of the flap jack.
This is cooking by hand.
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