Posted by pamela on May. 16, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
I had some amazing yummy pancakes at Renee’s house a couple of months ago. I say Renee’s house because her husband Kylie is the chef in the house and we were (as per normal) the amazingly lucky people being served a scrumptious breakfast. A couple of weeks ago I was sitting out here in California skimming some food blogs and came across a recipe at The Pioneer Woman for “Edna Mae’s Sour Cream Pancakes” that sounded rather like what Kylie had made. But, while I keep a stock of Greek yogurt in the house, I do not keep sour cream. I modified the recipe to create a healthier version that makes my taste buds happy and downsized it be a recipe for one that is hearty and yummy.
Before you get to to the recipe, I need to ramble a bit about Greek yogurt. I grew up on the Middle Eastern version of Greek yogurt, lebaneh. My mom taught me to strain plain yogurt to make my own lebaneh from plain yogurt well before it was readily available in America. Now suddenly Greek yogurt is everywhere in America and there is no need to make my own. But one of the things I have found in America is how important it is to spend the time to read the list of ingredients for anything that is a staple in your diet. Greek yogurt should read like this: milk, active cultures. That is it. But, there are cheaper ways to make ‘Greek yogurt’ that include pectin or other thickening agents (especially when it comes to low-fat or non-fat versions). If pectin or thickening agents are included in the list of ingredients, know that you have a nice thick-feeling yogurt but you do not have is Greek yogurt, or lebaneh. The brand I use is Fage. Do your own research next time you buy some Greek yogurt and see how your chosen yogurt measures up to the test. If you cannot find one that works, buy some plain yogurt (with an equally simple list of ingredients), line a strainer with a couple layers of cheese cloth and dump your yogurt into it. Put the yogurt in the strainer in the fridge for a couple of hours or overnight. What remains is Greek yogurt (the thickness of which will is variable based on how long you strained it), the liquid is whey and water that you can throw away. It is all about having real ingredients for real food. Now, for the recipe.
Greek Yogurt Pancakes
Combine in small mixing bowl:
- 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
- 3 Tbsp whole wheat flour
- 2 tsp wheat germ
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp banking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
Whisk together in small bowl:
Combine top list of ingredients in small mixing bowl (Greek yogurt and dry ingredients). Whisk together egg and vanilla in small bowl, then fold into yogurt combo. Scoop 1/4 or less of batter into a hot skillet and cook over medium-low to low heat.
Add some fruit and this recipe is a hearty meal for 1 person. Doubling the recipe would be good for 2-3 people.
Posted by pamela on May. 09, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
a photo a day: week 17
location: San Luis Obispo, CA
As much as I love to travel, I love to come home. I love familiar feelings of places that I know, that share a piece of my story and a part of my history. I intuitively knew that this is different than nostalgia, but I could not make that thought tangible, so I looked nostalgia up in the dictionary.
Nostalgia is “a sentimental longing or a wistful affection for the past, typically a period or place with happy personal association.” (New Oxford American Dictionary)
This love of coming home is not a longing of the past. Instead it is a sense of belonging and a placement within history. My home is my haven where I am free to create and to simply breathe. It is my place of peace that I share with loved ones. Every time I move, I work to make my new house my home as quick as possible, and I am glad to say that as I fill the pores of this house with the smells of cooking and her walls with my photos it is becoming a home, a place I love to come home to.
Posted by pamela on May. 02, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
Posted by pamela on Apr. 12, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
Posted by pamela on Mar. 28, 13 | 3 COMMENTS
Right now I am on the road west. I am on a long road trip with my dad, my car, and trailer filled with my belongings. Approximately 2,400 miles from start to finish, this trip from Georgia to California will close the door to several beautiful months off with family and friends and swing open the door to my new adventure: life and work in California.
Next week I will be joining the team at Lifewater International as their Director of International Programs. This is a nonprofit I have known and respected for many years and consider myself incredibly blessed to have this as my next adventure. My work will continue to focus on water and sanitation around the world, so get ready to hear more about that and be introduced to new places as I both make my home in San Luis Obispo and travel the globe to meet with new partners.
This is the start of a another beautiful adventure.
Posted by pamela on Mar. 28, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
Posted by pamela on Mar. 21, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
That particular weekend in January we were hoping to go camping, which took some serious commitment for me because I don’t love the cold. But, I believe in seizing the day, and this was the weekend available. Then it got all rainy and muddy on Thursday and Friday. Muddy and cold and a chance of rain. We decided sleeping indoors was a wise move. Someday maybe I will fall in love with cold weather camping. Maybe you will be the one to make that possible. For now, this is this the story of that weekend.
Camping nixed, the goal was to find a place to be outside. Breathing in nature is good for my soul, and even if I was not camping, there was to be an adventure. We flipped through a book I highly recommend called 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles of Nashville. There are different editions of this book for different cities, and I think they are brilliant. I am writing this particular trip up here because it is a place I wish I had known about when I was living in Nashville. We went to the Cumberland River Bicentennial Trail near Ashland City and did about an eight mile walk on an old railroad path that was paved over. It was flat and easy walk, but the sky was blue, it was warmer than anticipated, and it was a new area. The trail continues for another segment just as long (though I am not sure if it is all paved). For much of the walk we felt like we had it to ourselves. It would be perfect for a bike ride, a hike, taking a stroller, just something different that is close and easy and not muddy when it rains like crazy. Besides, if you do the first part of the trail, there is this random bike welded on top of a pole. Random and odd and made us smile that day.
I often find that adventures end well with a hunt for a local diner or restaurant. It is now becoming a tradition – sometimes something grand is found, sometimes greasy locations where it is rather clear I am not a local. This time we found a Vuocolo’s Italian Pizzeria, a restaurant in what looks like a house. Inside it feels like a house and there are really only two tables. Would it be good? We had our questions, but that is part of the adventure, part of the game. It was outstanding. The owner will happily divide the pizza in half or quarters so that you can each get what you want. I think it was the best pizza in the Nashville region. Why don’t you take a trip up there this spring or summer? Go for a long walk and get some pizza, then let me know what you think.
Posted by pamela on Mar. 20, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
Posted by pamela on Mar. 15, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
Four pizza places within four blocks. There are stories behind some of these places – one started after disgruntled employees left. One is legendary because of its cheese. What do I do when I hear about all of this? I decide that we need a taste-off. And of course we can do this in an affordable (and at least semi-non-indulgent) way: one slice of plain pizza with red sauce and cheese. All in all, four slices of the classic, basic pizza. Line them up and start tasting. The three of us would take a bite move on, take another bite, swap locations, shuffle around.
We were looking for the total package: crust, sauce, cheese, price, and location. The one with legendary cheese? A horrible crust and the sauce was only so-so. I love brick-oven pizza, but the one with a brick-oven styled crust did not have the right sauce or cheese to go with. One cost $2.50 while the others were all less than $2.00; it was also the furthest away. Our decisions made, we each headed back for one more slice. We laughed, we chatted, we analyzed together. And for less than $15 we had lunch for three and made a memory.
Where did this happen and which pizza joint was the winner? Irrelevant. The point is that we created fun in the middle of the week when we needed some laughter. Go, grab some friends and make a memory.
Posted by pamela on Mar. 12, 13 | 1 COMMENT
Posted by pamela on Mar. 07, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
After a few days in Atlanta, I hopped in my car and drove north, to spend a couple of weeks stepping away from the business of life and changes that are fast approaching. I have spent the time enjoying community, slowing down, stepping away from the media and social media. I have spent time putting words to pages, reading fun books, and playing many new games. It has been good and seems perfect that this is during the season of lent. This slowing down has given my brain time to think and to be, both things that are precious when life seems to fly by at lightening speeds. Next week I will be back online with new blog posts and some exiting news about where I am headed next, so stay tuned.
Posted by pamela on Feb. 20, 13 | 0 COMMENTS
Location: around Seattle, WA and Atlanta, GA
I started the week with friends north of Seattle and ended it at home with family in Atlanta. It was so good to be back in the region – I fell in love with the area years ago and simply love it. What I also remembered I do not love is not being able to see the sun. I think my whole family is heavily impacted by the sun. For example, just check out my sister-in-law’s news report over the magic of seeing the sun in Edinburgh (read: there was much celebration). Yes, we Cranes need to find homes where we can see the sun.
On Sunday I did a quick trip to the Martin Luther King Jr National Historic Site. This week I also finished Fredrick Douglass’s autobiography about his life in slavery. One of the things I love about living in the south is that it is difficult to ignore or gloss over this part of our nation’s history. It is ugly and horrific. But, in the midst of that ugliness, there is inspiration. There are people that have been great and have done great things. I am thankful for these people and their legacy; thankful that they helped to make a better story. I also cannot imagine what they had to endure. If you don’t know what I am talking about, read the autobiography linked above (it is less than 100 pages and costs less than $2), read something by Martin Luther King Jr, and visit sites like this one. I promise that it will be worth your while.
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
~Martin Luther King Jr in his Letter from the Birmingham Jail, 1963.
Posted by pamela on Feb. 13, 13 | 0 COMMENTS