Words: Shamim de Brún
As someone who’s never particularly loyal to any holiday, I can confidently say that Pancake Tuesday is the true love of my food-loving February.
Easter? Christmas? Nah. Any discerning person knows that Pancake Tuesday is the best holiday of the year. A whole twenty-four hours dedicated to eating syrup-soaked batter and none of the stress of having to buy cards or presents. It’s a win-win-win all around.
Don’t get me wrong; I love a good turkey dinner and all the festive treats that come with the holiday season. But there’s something intangibly special about Pancake Tuesday that sets it apart from the rest. Maybe it’s the fact that it’s a holiday that’s all about indulging in simple, comforting food. On the other hand, it could be the nostalgia of childhood memories of waking up to the smell of pancakes cooking in the kitchen. Either way, Pancakes are objectively delicious.
Let’s start with the basics. Pancakes are the ultimate comfort food. They’re warm, fluffy, and versatile enough to pair with almost anything. You can dress them up like one of your French girls or go Korean and make them scallion-ous. Or, simply, keep it classic with good old butter, lemon and sugar. No matter how you serve them, pancakes always hit the spot.
But Pancake Tuesday isn’t just about the pancakes themselves. It’s about the ritual of making them. There’s something deeply satisfying about mixing up a batch of batter and watching it transform into a stack of perfect pancakes. It’s like magic, but with butter and flour instead of a wand. This is how they won my everlasting devotion.
When I was the brokest girl in the land during my second year of university, I was too poor to host the soirées of my twenty-year-old dreams. But I couldn’t let it lie when I realised that the Welsh would let Pancake Tuesday pass without any fanfare. Even relegating it to ‘pancake day’. *shudders*
So I decided to host a feast. The whole year group cramped into my kitchen in halls, and I did my best to imitate Jesus with his loaves and fishes, feeding everyone on a pack of eggs, flour, and a pint of milk. It was such a success that it became a weekly Saturday morning ritual. My friends would bring their toppings of choice, and I would pancake them in whichever way. Another year I was in a play, and I brought pancakes in for everyone in Smock Alley in a tin BatMan lunch box. And so I slowly fell in deep true love with Pancake Tuesday.
The most fun part of Pancake Tuesday is the excuse to eat breakfast for every meal. Who needs dinner when you can have pancakes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner? Sure, you might feel like you’ll slip into a sugar coma at some point, but that’s a small price to pay for the joy of fluffy, delicious pancakes all day long.
Pancakes are like the Swiss Army Knife of breakfast foods. They’re versatile, dependable, and always ready for whatever job you throw their way. Need a sweet treat, something savoury, are ya feeling fancy? Pancakes are the vehicle for all your favourite sweet and savoury foods, and they do it all without complaint. Want to throw some fried chicken on top of your pancakes? Who’s gonna stop you? Not me.
Listen, I’m not saying that pancakes are the solution to all of life’s problems. But if you’re looking for a way to travel the world this Tuesday without leaving your kitchen, I have one word for you: pancakes. With a bit of creativity and a lot of butter, you can take your taste buds around the globe. Want to try some traditional Swedish pancakes? Whip up a batch of thin, crepe-like delights and serve them with lingonberry jam. Craving something a little more tropical? Try your hand at making Hawaiian-style pancakes with coconut and macadamia nuts. All you need is a stack of pancakes and a sense of adventure.
Whatever it is, Pancake Tuesday has my heart. So let’s all raise a spatula to the humble Pancake and the joy it brings to our lives. May we never take the wonder that is Pancake Tuesday for granted, and may we always have a well-stocked pantry full of flour, eggs, and syrup.
The world is your Pancake, my friends, so pile on whatever toppings make your heart sing.
Elsewhere on CHAR: How Much is Too Much for a Pint?