I Am What I Am

4 08 2009

So, Popeye and I don’t have a lot in common.  I don’t smoke a pipe, have really buff arms, or know how to sail.  But I DO really like spinach.  I like baby spinach salads, and I love sauteed spinach with garlic and a bit of cream or butter, and I also enjoy warming up a handful of frozen spinach in a pan, cracking an egg or two, and making a quick and filling omelet.  Unfortunately, Mason doesn’t seem to feel like eating any of those things most of the time, so I was stuck for a while figuring out how to present him spinach apart from in a basic puree, which–frankly–is just not very practical or portable these days.

Then came my new cracker friend to the rescue.  Spinach pancakes.  And we’re not talking about Aunt Jemima pancakes with a tablespoon of spinach essence added to the batter.  We’re talking spinach pancakes, plain and simple.  They’re tasty, easy to make, easy to eat, portable, and healthy.  Masher shoves them into his mouth like nobody’s business.  And I like them too!  What more can you ask for?

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Spinach (or Other Green Veggie) Pancakes

I’ve made this recipe with spinach, broccoli, or a combo of the two.  I’m sure kale, chard, and other such greens would make for a good texture as well, but they might end up being a bit too bitter since they don’t have the inherent sweetness of spinach or broccoli.  I don’t know.  Might be worth a try.

  • Fresh or frozen spinach or broccoli (10-14 oz)
  • 1/2 cup wheat germ, oat bran, or other such substance
  • Handful grated cheese (cheddar or whatever you have)

Instructions (or Loose Guidance, if you will):  Cook the veggies as you prefer (microwave or stovetop) long enough so that they can be easily pureed (but it’s OK for there to be some texture there).  Add the wheat germ and cheese and stir.  Plop the mixture by spoonfuls out on a baking sheet and flatten to 1/4-inch thickness if it’s not already liquidy enough that it flattens itself.  Bake at 350 for 10 minutes, flip and bake another 10 minutes.  The pancakes should be getting slightly golden-brown as they bake, so be sure they’re doing that before you flip them all, and adjust the oven temp and timing as needed.

As an aside, I’ve figured out what to say instead of, “Mason doesn’t like FILL-IN-THE-BLANK,” a statement that I feel unfairly compartmentalizes a kid and might be just plain wrong (see previous posting on this topic).  You’ll notice I used one variant of this phrase above:  “Mason doesn’t feel like FILL-IN-THE-BLANK right now.”  I mean, think about yourself!  You may like green beans, but you may like them fresh, but not out of a can, or you may like them the way that Aunt Betty prepares them but not Aunt Darnell, or you may enjoy eating them on Tuesday, but if someone offered them to you on Wednesday, you might throw up in your mouth a little …  Who knows?!?!?  You wouldn’t say categorically that you didn’t like green beans.  And if you would say that you have never liked green beans any of the times that you’ve eaten them, wouldn’t you admit that it’s entirely possible that you’ve just never had them cooked properly in a way that you’ve enjoyed?  Why shut out any chance of ever enjoying a whole entire food type?  So, that’s what we’re going with …  And if Masher doesn’t feel like eating scrambled eggs until he’s 30, well, blow me down!  I didn’t feel like eating beets until I was 30, and now I love them.  I am what I am.

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2 responses

15 08 2009
Taste Test #1 « Drink of Water

[…] Test #1 15 08 2009 I decided to do a taste test of some broccoli pancakes at playgroup with Masher’s “friends” the other day.  Unfortunately, Masher ate […]

13 02 2010
Stale Bread Ain’t Just for Ducks « Drink of Water

[…] year, inspired first by the Jim Lahey recipe above and then egged onward into the adventure by my spinach pancake friend, who was also just beginning to explore this world of tiny animals who have the power to magically […]

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