I’m 500 miles away from my dad, but today especially I wish I could rise and shine under my Kansas roof. Instead this Father’s Day morning I woke up nostalgic for my Dad’s company… and his famous pancake breakfasts.
Some of my favorite childhood memories were around our kitchen island. My dad could turn ordinary pancakes into magical creations – dinosaurs, Mickey Mouse, even spelling out names in batter. His breakfasts were one of the main reasons my girlfriends loved sleepovers at our house. I would secretly beam as he took orders and delivered, but I pretended not to let it show.
My dad was my first love and is my forever hero. When I look back on my childhood, I feel nothing but gratitude for all he has taught me.
He is a man of compassion. He showed us the importance of giving back, taking each of his girls on a medical mission trip to the Dominican Republic. I was the most proud 12-year-old scrubbing in next to my father as he performed surgery in a makeshift hospital outside Santo Domingo. But it didn’t have to be a plane flight away. One of Dad’s favorite holiday traditions is boxing warm meals for the homeless near downtown Kansas City each Thanksgiving-eve night.
From father-daughter dances to summer swim meets, he didn’t miss a beat. He perfected the art of balancing hard work with fun. He has provided me countless adventures from a one-on-one hike to the top of Machu Picchu to sharing are love for sushi on a rooftop in Texas. I’ll never forget the way he howls to the moon when he revs the boat engine at the lake or the smirk on his face when he lets the dogs jump in my bed to wake me. I can’t overlook his tender care. He held my hair back as I got sick from watching a bullfight in Pamplona and wrote me a love letter when I had my heart broken in college.
He coached my basketball team, read me Laura Ingalls Wilder, and built my dollhouse and swing set from scratch on Stratford Road. Nobody had a dollhouse like that, each brick and shutter meticulously crafted. I still remember going to a miniature dollhouse store outside Colorado Spring to furnish the home with him.
Dad loves his woodshop. I remember sitting in the sawdust on the driveway as he helped me replicate Zeus’ throne for a 7th grade English project. I was the only one with a wood-crafted masterpiece, and I never got it back because Mrs. Tripp liked it so much. I went on to watch Dad advance his craftsmanship, surprising us with handmade pens, kitchen utensils and even furniture for our homes.
My father has given us everything he has. He has shown me the best things in life aren’t things at all, but moments, memories and unconditional love. He is an incredible man and a tall order to live up to.
So on this sunny Father’s Day morning in Dallas I wanted to enjoy that famous pancake breakfast in honor of the man I’m blessed to call my dad.
Happy Father’s Day, Daddio. I enjoyed it with peanut butter on top just for you. Sending you my love!
- 1/2 cup buckwheat flower
- 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour (or gluten-free flour like rice flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup milk
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons honey or sugar (optional)
- 1 medium ripe banana, chopped
- In a medium mixing bowl, mix together the flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- In a liquid measuring cup, measure out the milk. Beat in the egg, vanilla extract and honey.
- Combine the wet and dry ingredients and fold in the banana to the batter.
- Preheat your skillet over medium-low heat and brush with 1½ teaspoons of oil.
- Pour approximately ¼ cup batter for each pancake and add the blueberries on top.
- Cook for 2 to 3 minutes until small bubbles form on the surface of the pancakes and flip. Cook on the opposite sides for 1 to 2 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Serve immediately
- Serve with maple syrup. It is also delicious served with a dollop of plain yogurt and peanut butter.