Cooking for Lockdown, or, the Beloved Wooden Spoon Incarcerated

I’ve been so busy taking advantage of the wholesale deprivation of my constitutional rights by this radical/liberal/socialist/communist virus to get my book(s) and article(s) edited for publishers who aren’t even coming to work these days that I’ve been neglecting my duties here at FI as our designated culinary belletrist. No more.

I woke up at six yesterday morning, put on my “Who Was that Masked Man” T-shirt, painter’s mask, black eye mask, red bandanna (tied to the right side) and white Stetson hat to catch the special 7AM duffer’s hour at Publix to score some chicken hearts, chicken gizzards and chicken livers for my dogs. They had hearts and those expensive antibiotic-free livers that cost four times as much as the regular package of chicken livers but….no gizzards! Fat lot of good that’ll do ya if you have dogs to feed because, as Lenin famously noted, when you’ve got them by the gizzards, their hearts and livers will follow.

Be that as it may, I’ve been experimenting with low-lectin, low-carb pancakes, among other things, and this morning I made a big stack of….

Slothrop’s Banana Breakfast Pancakes

As Gravity’s Rainbow opens with its famous overture “A screaming comes across the sky,” we find the redoubtable Tyrone Slothrop (after whom I once named my pet tarantula) in his WWII London flat making pancakes with black market bananas as German V-2 rockets roar overhead and pepper the city with their high explosive warheads. Seemed like a nice metaphor for Coronavirus, no? Anyway….

You will need:

1 tbsp flaxseed meal
1 cup almond, millet or coconut flour (either one works as well)
1 large egg
3/4 cup goat or coconut milk (unsweetened if your pancreas is shot)
1 stick French or Italian (ie A2) butter
1 tsp baking soda
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 teaspoon perilla seed oil

1/2 tsp each cinnamon and nutnmeg
1/4 cup white wine
1 large ripe banana or sweet plantain
the maple syrup of your choice, or honey

Combine the first eight ingredients in a bowl and blend with a blender until the batter slightly stiffens; add a little more milk or coconut milk to thin it a bit, so it pours easily enough onto the griddle. Let stand for the baking soda to help it rise a bit.

Setting aside about half a dozen thin slices of your banana or plantain, slice the rest of your banana into thin slices and saute in butter, adding the cinnamon and nutmeg and the white wine. Let the wine boil off. Scoop out the sauteed banana and any residual syrup and stir into the batter.

Set a griddle over your burner (a flame works yonks better than an electric range but as the famous mobster Joe Curly was fond of saying, we do the best we can with the tools that we have.) Heat the griddle well, till a flicker of water hisses and evaporates instantaneously. Pour a tablespoon of coconut oil on the griddle and spoon out 1/3 cup of batter (as many as you have room for). Wait for bubbles to form in the pancakes before flipping them; they should only be lightly browned on each side before you transfer them to the plate.

Hint: have your butter standing by; add a thin pat of butter to each pancake, and a dash of syrup or honey, before you place the next cake on the stack, and repeat this procedure for each succeeding pancake. When you’ve built your stack to your own specs, add the final dollop of butter, garnish it with the slices of banana you set aside earlier, and add as much syrup as you like.

Cubanized version: Instead of slicing a sweet plantain as recommended above, rather than adding it to the batter, slice the plantain in half the long way, cut each half into roughly 4″ segments and saute in the butter and wine until browned and soft, if not slightly caramelized, sprinkling generously with cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg and brown sugar as they cook (not recommended for diabetics) to make marinated maduros. Lay a few of these maduros between each pancake as you build your stack.

This will make the morning between those same old damned four walls go faster, though it will assuredly not make you go faster.

7 thoughts on “Cooking for Lockdown, or, the Beloved Wooden Spoon Incarcerated

    1. Ah, but what did mom name her tarantula? I had another tarantula, more recently, who always hid in the plastic skull in her terrarium, so I named her Afikomen.

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  1. Cambells Chicken Noodle Soup (the original of course). Peel of the ring top lid, mix in some finely diced jalapenos, onions, fresh tomatoes and shredded sharp cheddar cheese, grab the can and a spoon and you’re back in front of the cheap ass big ass TV in a flash.

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  2. In unrelated history, on 25 April 1976 Rick Mionday, then a Cubbie, well, let Wikipedia tell it:
    “American flag incident[edit]
    At Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on April 25, 1976, two protesters ran into left-center field and tried to set fire to an American flag after the start of the bottom of the 4th inning.[13] Monday, the Cubs center fielder, had been tossing a practice ball with left fielder José Cardenal before the incident happened. After Ken Crosby of the Cubs threw a pitch that made Ted Sizemore pop out, Monday dashed over and grabbed the flag to thunderous cheers. Monday ran through the infield with the flag and while walking towards the Dodgers dugout met and handed the flag over to Dodgers pitcher Doug Rau. The ballpark police officers arrested and escorted the two intruders, William Thomas and his 11-year-old son, off the field and afterwards the father of the boy was fined, charged with trespassing, and put on probation. When Monday came to bat in the top half of the 5th inning, he got a standing ovation from the crowd and the big message board behind the left-field bleachers in the stadium flashed the message, “Rick Monday… You Made A Great Play…” He later said, “If you’re going to burn the flag, don’t do it around me. I’ve been to too many veterans’ hospitals and seen too many broken bodies of guys who tried to protect it.”[14] Monday had served, while playing Major League Baseball, a six-year commitment with the United States Marine Corps Reserve as part of his ROTC obligation after leaving Arizona State.[15]
    On August 25, 2008, Monday was presented with an American flag flown over Valley Forge National Historical Park in honor of his 1976 bicentennial flag rescue.[16] Monday still has the flag he rescued from the protesters that was presented to him on “Rick Monday Day”, May 4, 1976, during a pregame ceremony at Wrigley Field by an executive of the Dodgers organization; he has been offered up to $1 million to sell it, but has declined all offers.[citation needed]
    During a Dodger Stadium game on September 2, 2008, Monday was presented with a Peace On Earth Medallion and a medallion lapel pin by Patricia Kennedy, founder of the non-profit organization Step Up 4 Vets, for his valor and patriotic actions on April 25, 1976 at Dodger Stadium.[17][18]”

    Monday came to the LAD eight months later via trade and spent his last eight years of his career there. Monday remained a fan favorite in Chavez Ravine.

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    1. Italian or French butter, not Irish. Yeah, it’ll still work but (a) you miss out on all the nutritional benefits of the perilla oil (Whole Foods carries it; Publix carries it down here), and conventional butter is usually made with A1 milk with its toxic A1 casein (as opposed to southern European butter, which is made with A2 milk, a non-toxic form of casein). The most popular and widely available imported French butter is President; I’ve seen it almost everywhere. If you use ordinary butter it won’t taste any different; I just try to give the healthiest variation on the recipe I can.

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      1. When I buy butter its usually Kerrygold because I prefer how it tastes, that’s why I asked. It does sound pretty good, though.

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