this one’s dedicated to my lovely Noosi: summer peach {german} pancakes

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i know i’ve been away for a while, and i’ve truly missed being here. truth is, my grandma is not well. she is really not well at all, and i’ve been sad. she is too far away from me, and it’s been really hard to come here and talk about food, when all i can think of is being with her. she is the reason i love cooking and eating, the reason i know anything about flavor, the reason i actually enjoy slicing and dicing and generally all manners of “playing” with fruits and vegetables, the reason i love to feed my family more than anything, the reason i am obsessed with a certain standard and order in my kitchen, and more than anything, the reason i enjoy the simple pleasures-the little things she taught me to appreciate. when a bird sits on the windowsill i think of her, as she always pointed them out, talked to them tenderly, and believed they brought good luck. when i see fruits on trees or soft grape leaves i think of her, because she could never walk by them without picking some for us to taste (the leaves she used to make the most tender and delicious dolmas).
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my cousin calls her “hastash” which translates to the pit, (as in the cherry pit) because she would so often feed us cherries from her trees and not let us go until we spit out the pit saying “hastash ro bedeh” or “spit out the pit”. she would get down on her knees and show me ant hills and wiggly worms and let me pick radishes and carrots and plant seeds and water the fresh herbs she was growing. she let me secretly keep the baby kittens we found in the attic (even though my parents were against it), bought me little yellow baby chickens, sang for me and made me dance for her…ramdari rimdam ramdari rimdam, lied down with me until i fell asleep, washed my hair and scrubbed my back, and cooked me anything i asked for, let me make the biggest mess in her kitchen, taught me her prayers, gave me love without abandon and taught me the importance of being gentle, kind, and giving, of loving your family, of dreaming big, and most of all of feeding them well. she generally spoiled me rotten, and i am so much the better for it. as my sister says every memory of our childhoods begins and ends with her. she is the strongest and most special woman i have ever known (my mom comes a very close second). whenever i face a problem i think of her strenghth, her hopefulness, her faith, and her boundless enthusiasm. mommoni-e-man, Noosi, you are the sun and the moon and everything good i know in this life. i love you. you are with me every time i cook anything. i made my kids a light peach pancake (click here for the pancake recipe) this morning thinking of you and your talents as i laid down the peach slices. thank you.
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yasmin’s german apple "pancakes" (more like crepes)

my good friend from high school became my room mate in college when i was living in los angeles back in the 80’s. we shared a one bedroom condo in brentwood, and i remember us shopping for food, making a (very) few good meals in our tiny kitchen, lots of take out, many disagreements (some times not the best idea living with a good friend), but most of all, i remember her making me her uma’s german pancakes. we had them for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and midnight snack! there were two reasons for this: 1. they were simply delicious every time  (1.5. they were cheap to make) 2. we (almost) always had the ingredients:

  • flour (now i’ve substituted organic whole wheat)
  • eggs  (organic)
  • butter
  • salt
  • milk (organic)
  • apples
  • sugar (brown organic sugar, agave or maple syrup)-
{the one above was made with a ripe white peach}

to this day, these “pancakes” are a staple at our house, and i make them for my daughter often- me? i only eat them on special occasions…the reason is clear if you look at the ingredients. smiley face.

for one pancake whisk together:
1 large organic egg, 3 tablespoons of ww flour, about a 1/4 cup of milk, and a pinch of sea salt -i eyeball it-so this is the consistency you want (in the picture), pinch of sea salt.
peel & core your apple of choice (or organic strawberries, blueberries, bananas), melt 1-2 tsp butter in a (small to medium)  non stick skillet, line up the fruits as you wish in the pan, and cook for about 2-3 minutes until just softening [OR, make the pancake, then quickly stir fry the fruit and top it over the plain pancake-this is the easier option}. pour the batter carefully over the fruit starting from the outside edges.
let the pancake cook on medium-high for about 2-3 minutes before flipping-now this is the challenging part if you want to keep it in one piece-you can do it with the help of a large spatula or in stages with your plate-cook one side until the edges begin to separate, carefully detach the pancake with a spatula and slide on to a plate. cover the pancake with the skillet and carefully flip it over. the uncooked side will now be facing the pan. this time i used strawberries, and they were delicious, but the final result was not so picture worthy!
this (below) is what happens when the “flipping over” doesn’t work so well….
and this one is the famous apple pancake that made it to the plate in one whole piece!!
the easier option: a plain pancake topped with fruit and a sprinkle of brown sugar

 

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