I’m thinking about my grandmother today, and often lately. My “Gram” is 94 years old and has been in a nursing home for the last few years. I went to visit her last weekend during a quick trip to my hometown in Maryland. It’s hard to see her in there. Her eyesight is gone, and she is no longer mobile. She lived a very vibrant life in her younger years, never missing a dance at the Moose Lodge and loving to stun her friends with raunchy gag gifts. I can’t imagine life without her in it, but I know the life she has now would never be her choice. During my visit, I asked her if she thought she’d live to be 100. She emphatically said, “No!” I said, “Well, how about 95?” She said, “Yeah, I think so.” I said, “How about 96?” She said, “I hope not.” I said, “Once you hit 95, you’re officially out of gas?” She laughed and said she thought so.
I spent a lot of time at my Gram’s house growing up. There were things that she cooked that I loved, but she knew my favorite was “breakfast for dinner.” She made THE best pancakes I’ve ever had, and I’ve spent years trying to figure out how to get them to taste as good. Much of it has to do with the fact that she wasn’t afraid to cook those bad boys in hot oil. The edges were so crispy that it was almost like eating a funnel cake at the fair. I’m okay with the fact that my pancakes will never be as good. It is a memory that I will always hold dear and have no intention of replacing.
Now my own kids also love “breakfast for dinner,” along with our tradition of Pancake Sunday. Each time I make pancakes from scratch, I tweak the recipe a little more. Today I tried something new and it took my recipe to a new level. You know all that clear stuff that rises to the top of your homemade yogurt? It’s called “whey” and most people have no idea what to do with it after they strain it from their Greek Yogurt. Turns out you can trade out the liquid in your pancake recipe with whey for a healthy little kick. Not only did my pancakes turn out fluffy and tasty, I loved that I was using something that was essentially free in place of something I would otherwise have had to buy. Want not, waste not!
If you’ve found yourself pondering what to do with your leftover whey, give these pancakes a try. They aren’t as good as my Gram’s, but you’ll never know that!