By – Nwachukwu Binta
Are you having a hard time thinking of something quick you can make for yourself or your kids on a Saturday morning?
My mum always had baking flour in her kitchen on standby but I never understood why until one bright Saturday morning. Growing up in Lagos is an interesting experience. Waking up to the sound of various hawkers screaming out to residents to alert them of their presence. You would hear the pap woman shouting “ologi de ooo (ogi seller is here)” or the agege bread seller singing “buy butter bread.”
So, we eagerly waited that Saturday morning for the sound of the bread or pap, or agonyi beans woman but we were sore disappointed when we didn’t hear any voice. I went into the kitchen and found my mum sifting flour in the normal large bowl; she has conspicuously placed baking powder, salt and sugar on the kitchen table. As usual, she created some deep space in the middle of the flour in the bowl and poured in one and half cups of milk, broke two eggs in and melted four teaspoons of butter and began mixing it with the wooden spoon. I dodged out of the kitchen to quickly check what was happening on the TV, and when I got returned to the kitchen 10 minutes after, mom had succeeded in creating a smooth paste in the bowl. I was already beginning to salivate!
Without being instructed, I turn on the gas burner and proceeded to place a dry frying pan with little oil in it. I asked mom to hand over the paste which she glady did. This time, I was determined to show her how much of an expert I had become in making pancakes. I poured a little quantity of the mixture at a time, and watched them gracefully golden and brown, flipping them over intermittently to ensure they didn’t get burnt whilst being well cooked. From the corner of my eyes, I could see mom smiling and nodding in satisfaction.
Buoyed by her seeming appreciation of my skills, and her satisfaction with my culinary work, I didn’t even realize when the bowl was empty.
Before I could finish placing the jam and syrup, or placing the tea cups and hot water on the table, my siblings had begun demolishing my pancakes with relish.
What could I say; it was sufficient for me that I proved to mom what a great pancake maker I was.