by Tomie DePaola
Set in the country, “Pancakes for Breakfast” is a story of a lady who wakes up one cold winter morning and decides to make warm pancakes. While originally published in l978, it remains a delightful, timeless lesson on how pancakes are really made. There’s not a frozen package or mix box in sight.
Even though there is no story text, DePaola’s signature illustrations leave little doubt about how to whip up a batch of pancakes from scratch. This format provides lots of material for discussion and questions by formative young cooks about the origin of ingredients used to make food. It can also be used as an example of supporting local, sustainable food supplies, which was hip even in the seventies.
A pancake recipe is included, but feel free to encourage your young chef to add their own flair, just like the pros. Think outside the box, or book, and add complementary ingredients, such as bananas, berries, apples, or peaches that would add to the flavor, color and nutrition. Stir imaginations by substituting low fat buttermilk or tossing in a handful of cornmeal, flax meal, crunchy wheat germ, or whole grain flour. Try dipping each bite in low fat maple yogurt instead of syrup. You get the picture.
The story illustrations are sweet and self-explanatory, but there is a surprise ending and a bonus moral to the story. “Pancakes for Breakfast” is a book that has stood the test of time, and one you’ll also want to save for the grandkids. Enjoy!
Pancakes For Breakfast by Tomie DePaola
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