Fighter pilot, Royal Navy 1945, Hydrographer Iraq 1947-52 India 1952-53, Canadian Hydrographic Arctic explorer 1953-1960, Writer-producer Canadian National Film Board 1961-72, Freelance journalist, audio-visual producer 1972-2009, National Press Club of Canada 1961 - 2006

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Fritter Supreme

Pancake making can be ‘A Piece of Cake!’

...or pie, or savoury, or dinner, or whatever ...

... because the happy result of mixing together equal quantities of plain and whole-wheat flour, plus a tablespoon of baking powder, a splash of olive oil, with enough milk and an egg or two, is the basis of producing all manner of good stuff for breakfast or snacks — either savoury, sweet, or magically combined or embedded together.

Of course, the most basic use of a pancake mix, one having the consistency of stiffish molasses, is by simply using it to make a dozen or so pancakes. This operation is a piece of cake. Just heat oil in a firm and solid frying pan, then drop extra-large tablespoonfuls of the mixture into the hot fat, adjacent to each other, to make sturdy round pancakes the size of a pint beer tankard’s bottom, a hockey puck, or a doily — depending on which day-to-day image instantly leaps to mind and is best suited to your personal lifestyle.

Such pancakes, doused liberally with pure maple syrup, are excellent as they come out of the pan but, if embedded with pieces of fried bacon and partly cooked in bacon fat, or accompanied by well-browned sausages, form a really substantial meal.

And for special scrumptiousness, make Spam fritters. Yes, that’s right. Fritters. Fritters made with spam. Yes, Spam! SPAM, SPAM, SPAM — the spiced ham that helped win World War II. Spam comes in a nice clean tin from which it is easily coaxed to emerge whole as a neat rectangular block with nice rounded corners which, when cut into 1/8th or 1/4 inch-thick slices are just the right size to be delicately held with small kitchen tongs for dipping into the pancake mix and then for gently placing each slice into a different corner of a frying pan. Coated all over with the batter, the embedded spam slices, now hidden within the batter, can be readily turned over for the delicious cooking of both sides.

Served, glistening with pure maple syrup, they are a heavenly and substantial breakfast meal.

Children love them.

And so do I.

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