Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Traditions: Big Breakfasts

My Mom always cooked up a big breakfast on Christmas morning, usually consisting of eggs, toast, and corned beef hash. My parents and I enjoyed those intimate big breakfasts in our cozy little breakfast nook, all the while talking and laughing about what shenanigans Santa was up to and what our favorite presents were. This tradition is something that I like to carry on with my own family now.

Speaking of tradition.......anyone remember these bowls from the 70's? My Mom had the whole collection, along with matching measuring cups, and a matching pitcher. In fact, we used to have the matching green refrigerator and stove. A special shade of green made popular only in the 70's :D
My Mom used these bowls for everything, heck, she even baked casseroles in them. I inherited these bowls in my early twenties and have loved them dearly since. They remind me of my Mom working in the kitchen and I love thinking about all the times my family held them and ate from them. There is no telling how many thousands of meals have been mixed and served from these old worn out bowls. If I'm in the kitchen, odds are that I'm holding one of these mixing bowls. They are the only set of mixing bowls I own and are some of my most treasured items. I baby them, handle them with care and get very cranky if anyone else fondles them!!
This week's theme at I Heart Cooking Clubs is all about the holidays and traditions. Seems fitting as I took out my Mom's old bowls and set to work on Nigella's Homemade Instant Pancake Mix as part of our big Christmas breakfast.

Now, I must say that I am not known for my pancakes. In fact, I'm really not good at them. I have tried over and over to produce the light and fluffy pancakes that my family adores, but to no avail. I bet I've tried at least six recipes over the past few years only to turn out pale, dense, and heavy pancakes........ until now. I'm happy to say that it seems Nigella's homemade mix is the right recipe for me! In fact, they turned out so well that I forgot to take a picture. They just started disappearing from the serving plate!!

HOMEMADE INSTANT PANCAKE MIX - adapted from Nigella Express by Nigella Lawson
For the Pancake Mix:

4 cups flour *I used half white whole wheat and half a/p*
3 tablespoons baking powder **wow - this is a lot of baking powder, but it works well**
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons sugar

Mix the above ingredients together and store in a jar.

To Make the Batter and The Pancakes:
**For every 1 cup of pancake mix, add and whisk together:
1 egg
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon butter, melted

Heat a dry flat griddle or pan- no need to oil it. Spoon 1-1/2 to 2 tablespoons of batter onto the hot griddle and when bubbles appear on the surface of the little pancakes, flip them over to make them golden brown on both sides. A minute or so a side should do it.

**Makes 15 pancakes of about 3 inches in diameter

NOTES/RESULTS: This is the first time I've produced a great pancake! I'm so happy that I tried this recipe. I noticed that Nigella's recipe has a lot of baking powder and I'm not sure if this is what sets it apart or not. Another difference is that I have always buttered or oiled my skillet before adding the pancake batter. I'm thinking that was a big mistake. I followed Nigella's tip and didn't oil or butter the pan and the pancakes turned a lovely shade of golden brown and puffed up nicely. They bubbled when they were supposed to and were so easy to flip. I'm gonna have to say that I love this mix. Too bad I don't have a final picture to share.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! I'll be headed up to Ohio tomorrow morning to visit with some of my very favorite people: my Dad and my old childhood friends. I'm taking tons of cookies and Tyler's Ultimate Lasagna Bolognese (now frozen and set to defrost in my car on the drive). I'm wishing you all a wonderful Holiday weekend and I'll see you next week for a recap of my favorite top ten recipes from 2009!!

Head on over to I Heart Cooking Clubs to check out everyone's special post about the holidays and traditions!!

Oh, and I can't publish this post without sharing my favorite presents of the day. I finally got a springform pan and I'm really excited about that. I also got a couple of little crocks for individual casseroles, perfect for french onion soup, little mac n cheeses, etc. I also got a grill pan for the stovetop. I have been pretty busy thinking of things to cook and bake in my new gadgets!! Sweet dreams to me :D


  1. I keep some of that pancake mix around...comes in mighty handy.

    I hope you had a wonderful Christmas Kim. I was going to send you a Facebook friend request - do you have an account?

  2. So nice that you get to spend your holiday with family :D. Congrats on your first pancacke success! And woo hoo, sounds like you got a lot of fun kitchen goodies this Christmas, guess there are going to be a lot of fab new treats this year.
    *kisses* HH

  3. LOVE the bowls.. they must mean so much to you. I'll have to try that pancake mix, it sounds like they were such a hit. Hope you had a wonderful holiday!!

  4. Sounds like you had an excellent Xmas Kim! You deserve it.

    My friends always make fun of me for my dense pancakes. Maybe I just need to try this recipe!

  5. Love the bowls!
    Awesome pancake mix. After making bacon and eggs for six yesterday I have one egg left and two boys to feed - this will be perfect!
    Have a great time in Ohio.

  6. What a great tradition, my mom has some bowls that are like that :)

  7. That is "avocado green". My fridge and stove were that color - left over from the 70s - until last year. I remember bowls like that too. :-)

  8. Love the bowl. That's cool that you can bake stuff in it! Nice! :)

  9. I don't have those bowls, but I know what you mean about having those family treasures. My mom passed away a year and a half ago. I used a tablecloth she got for her bridal shower and her double boiler when I made my Christmas lasagna. Both are over 60 years old. They help keep her close. Enjoy your trip and Happy New Year.

  10. I've been wondering how this mix was...glad to hear it produced great pancakes! Sounds like a fabulous Christmas...and I love your mixing bowls (even better w/ the history)!! :D

  11. As always, looks wonderful. Spending time with family is so special.
    I am looking forward to all your blog posts in 2010! By the way, I am your 100th follower. Yeah!!!

  12. I love special family holiday traditions! My grandma recently passed on some stunning mixing bowls from when she got married and I am ever so careful with them. :-) Hope you and your family had a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year!

  13. Love your mixing bowls. So sweet that they were your Mom's. Everyone needs a great pancake recipe, congrats on finding the one for you!

  14. I love the bowls!

    We had to get on the road, so our Christmas breakfast was at Waffle House. It was great!

  15. Oh I do see those bowls everywhere! What fun to have them. The pancakes - mmm. Very delicious. I grew up with eggs Benedict every Christmas morning. My husband grew up with French Toast. So far,for 23 years- he's won.Maybe New Years...

  16. Not fondling your bowls, I promise! Sheesh, you're touchy. Hey, wait, what are you doing? Get away from my Big Green Egg with that hammer! (ha ha ha)

    Actually, it occurs to me that I don't have any family hand me down cookware.

  17. What a wonderful tradition - and how heart-warming that you carry it on with your own family.

    Although I'm late getting around, I hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

  18. That bowl brought back memories of my mom's avocado green, brown, and orange kitchen. Yikes!

    I don't function well enough in the morning to make a big breakfast, but I'm pretty sure I could manage these pancakes. If given coffee first, of course.

  19. Ciao Kim ! I wish you a very happy new year full of cheesecakes (or springformed cakes !)

  20. Oh these pancakes wan me to have a great breakfast tommorow,great panckes u have here..great for Christmas eve,Christmas days and all the rest of the 363 days too!!!!
    Love ur bowls coz of the absolutely cute stori heart touching stori behind 'em,ever since have been in my teens i've been quite possesive about all my moms crockery and hand made linen too and i know just what these bowls mean to ya....
    Happy hols...

  21. I made these the minute I finished commenting last time. What a great idea. Thanks so much!

  22. h0la Ola...would love to ask for i really i need helppppppppppp and a precious vote ..hop on here for details
    or hop strait below...puleeze...pinky promise please.....
    ...a few moments of ur time

  23. Oh yes, I remember the bowls. In fact I still have 2. They are a tiny bit different but still from the 70's! And that green stove and refer was avocado green. I will never forget.
    Happy New Year Kim! :)

  24. I'm not very good with pancakes either and I don't know what I do wrong. I use the same batter that my husband uses and his turn out so much better then mine.

    I will definitely be using this recipe the next time I make pancakes!


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