Monday through Friday, I am the one to feed the girls their morning meal. Early. 5:00 a.m. early. Our dogs are conditioned to enjoy their breakfast at the crack of dawn, when it’s still dark and cold out. Once their bellies’ are full, they settle back down on their huge dog pillows for a little morning shut-eye as I sip my coffee and read the paper before I leave for work.
Come the weekend, my wonderful, sweet hubby gets up early to feed Amore and Dolce, allowing me to sleep a couple more hours before I start the day. For some perverse reason, on the weekends, the girls start scrambling for their breakfast around 4:00 a.m. They’ll come around to the side of the bed, checking to see if one of us is up yet, being sure to whack their tail several times for good measure. On a good day, they might wait until 4:30 a.m. before starting their wake-up antics. If need be, Amore will jump up on the bed and sit on one of us in her attempt to get fed. It’s about this time, I’m kicking Malc in the back, “it’s your turn to feed’em!” I mumble.
Blurry eyed, and three-quarters still asleep, he stumbles out to the dark kitchen, tripping over 200 excited pounds of two hungry dogs in their mad bid for their kibbles. From the other room, I hear several choice words spewing loudly from his lips as his bare feet and legs are clawed by dog paws in their eagerness to be fed. I hear the clank and clatter from their metal dog bowls being pushed around the hard floor as they devour their food. Then quiet. Blissful quiet. Wonderful-fall-back-to-sleep quiet. While the girls are still chowing down their food, Malc will crawl back into the still warm bed, staking out his territory on the mattress. He has about 2 minutes to fluff his pillows and get comfortable before the girls search us out, climbing up on the bed to snuggle in for a few more hours. A half hour later, Gordita joins the family snugglefest, stepping over fur and bodies to curl up on a down pillow.
By the time, I’m ready to rise, I have two dogs stretched out on each side of me and a cat up on my pillow loudly purring in my ear, a black cat tail draped across my face. I can’t move. I look over at Malcolm and see a slight smile peaking through the covers. “Psst! You awake?”, I persist in waking him. One visible eye opens, we share a contented, loving look as we view our menagerie nestled on the bed. Our family. It brings a warm hug to our hearts.
Sunday morning is our special day of the week to laze around, read the paper, drink our coffee, share breakfast. It’s turned into tradition, having our girls curled up around us as we read the comics, the OpEd page, the local news, sipping hot coffee, being careful not to spill any on the covers. Breakfast turns into brunch, but who cares, it’s our lazy day to enjoy our family.
Perfect for those lazy Sunday mornings, these cakes are light and fluffy – the secret is taking the time to beat the egg whites separately.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 cup non-fat milk (may use buttermilk)
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 tsp. lemon zest, finely grated
- 2 large egg whites (save extra egg yolk for your canine friends)
- 3/4 cup sliced bananas
- 3/4 cup raspberries
- 1/4 cup raspberry jam (heated in microwave)
- 1 cup vanilla yogurt
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt, set aside. In a small bowl, whisk together milk, egg yolk and zest. Set aside.
Beat egg whites with an electric mixer until stiff peaks forms. Stir milk mixture little by little into the flour mixture. Carefully fold in egg whites and then add the sliced bananas.
Spray non-stick cooking spray on a large non-stick skillet or griddle and warm over medium heat. Ladle batter onto hot griddle using a 1/4 cup measuring cup to pour batter, making a hotcake. Repeat until griddle is full. Cook until bottom is set and golden brown, about two minutes. Flip and cook until firm, another 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside and cover to keep warm until you’ve cooked all the hotcakes.
Serve hotcakes topped with warm raspberry jam and vanilla yogurt and raspberries.