Paleo Almond Pancakes

I don’t like pancakes.

Gasp, the horror! I know. I’m a little wacky. Occasionally (and by occasionally I mean maybe once five years ago when I was pregnant with my first baby), I’ll have a hankering for pancakes, but they’re really not my first choice. I’ll eat them; they’re fine. I’m just not a big fan. (I’m also not a huge fan of donuts either. Or pie. Or frosting. Please don’t hate me.) I can actually hear Jim Gaffigan yelling at me.

BUT

I love these pancakes. Maybe because I inherited my mother’s love of almonds and their delightful flavor. Who knows.

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But these are amazing.

I have searched and attempted to make many versions of a paleo pancake. Some with coconut flour and eggs, some with just banana and egg, some with protein power. I had yet to find a decent texture and firm enough pancake that tasted good and wouldn’t fall apart when I flipped it. Because that happens to me a lot.

Then I came up with these. Oh, happiness.

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Currently, my husband and I are completing our second round of Whole30 and I was trying to incorporate more healthy, Whole30 eating for my kids as well. Hence the search for the perfect pancake. After several attempts, I landed on this little gem and it was amazing! Technically, pancakes aren’t Whole30 approve, even when making them with entirely compliant ingredients. But since pancakes are a trigger food for me (see above), and I’d already completed one round, I figured I’d be safe.

My life will forever be changed.

These little cakes are delightful. Filled with nutty almond flavor, and a pleasing texture, they were a hit even with my children. (Including the 9 month old)

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The almond flour is a new ingredient for me and I bought it on a whim. Be sure to get almond flour instead of almond meal. You could certainly try almond meal, but I prefer the texture of flour (the skins of the almonds have been removed making it a finer texture).  I also used a little coconut flour to  help with texture, flavor, and to stabilize it a bit.

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To really beef up the almond flavor, I used unsweetened almond milk (vanilla or regular work just fine) and almond extract. The extract is the key. My mom always used almond extract in her  Christmas cookies instead of vanilla, so these pancakes have a treat-like feel for me. (If your mom didn’t make Christmas cookies that way, add the almond extract anyway. It’s yummy.)

Mix everything together. Note: the batter will be thicker than a traditional pancake batter and this is perfectly fine. You may have to spread batter out in little circles with the back of a spoon.

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For my kids I served with real maple syrup. I ate them plain (Whole30, you know). Enjoy!

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Paleo Almond Pancakes

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 cup almond flour
  • 1 tbs coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Wet Ingredients:

  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • tiny splash vanilla

Mix wet and dry ingredients separately. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix well. Batter will be slightly thicker than regular pancake batter.

Heat a nonstick skillet on medium heat. Melt a little ghee or butter onto the skillet. Drop about 1/4 cup of batter in skillet and spread out with back of a spoon in a medium-sized pancake. Cook several minutes per side until each side is golden.

Top with maple syrup or a date-almond butter syrup. (See below.)

Dig in!

 

Date-Almond Butter Syrup

Ok, this isn’t really a recipe. But it’s super yummy. Again, probably not Whole30 approved since its a recreation of a sweet syrupy sauce, but it would work very well with the pancakes.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pitted dates
  • 1/2 boiling water
  • 1/2 cup almond butter

Soak date in water until plump and softened. Throw in a food processor or blender with almond butter and blend until smooth and a syrup-like consistency. Serve with pancakes, or just eat with a spoon. It’s that good.

 

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Goals for 2017

Happy New Year!

I have a confession. I hate making New Year’s resolutions. I think they’re kind of stupid. Most of the time when someone asks what my resolution is, I say, “To floss.” (That’s the truth, I do want to floss more.) But overall, I don’t hold my weight or faith in resolutions.

Now, I don’t care if you do and I don’t judge anyone who does. Seriously, have fun, make a resolution or don’t. It doesn’t matter to me.

I don’t like them because I’m of a mind that if you want to make a change, you shouldn’t have to wait for a new year to do that. Just change. Make up your mind and do it now.

That being said, I’m a huge fan of making goals. I like having something to work towards and measure progress against. Whether it’s financial goals, spiritual goals, or health-related goals, I respond well to a “carrot on a stick.” Some of my goals are long term like pay the house off in ten years, or get published and qualify for Boston in five years.

I don’t want to be a “someday when the kids are gone” person. I want something to work for and strive for now. That’s just me. But I do think we all can benefit from taking a moment and measuring how far we’ve come – whether that’s fitness, finances, or family – and planning for where we’d like to be.

Like I said, I have long term goals that I don’t think I need to lay out for you. I also have many non-running related goals. But since this blog focused on my journey running through pregnancy, postpartum, and motherhood, I’m going to share my running and mothering goals with you.

Running Goals 2017

  1. Break 24 minutes in the 5k  I think this one is doable. That means taking my 5k pace down to about a 7:45 and I think  I can do that within the year. I’m not planning on running any 5ks until the spring/summer, so we’ll see.
  2. Break 2 hours in the half marathon This may be a stretch, but I think I can pull this one off too. I may have to wait until a fall race to reach the goal, but a 9 minute pace is about what I’m running now for mid distances (5-8 miles). I think I can do it. I know I can.
  3. Compete in my first triathlon  This is also a tricky one. I’ve wanted to do a triathlon for a while, but training requires a bit more flexibility and time. And I need a bike. I’m thinking of one in June right now, but as always, it’s subject to change. The needs of 3 small children take priority over training for something like that.
  4. Run a 4:30 marathon in April (date subject to change) I have my eye on a marathon nearby in April, but I’m not sure if I’m giving myself plenty of time to train for it. The past two marathons I’ve done, I’ve injured myself. I really want to avoid injury again, so this may get pushed back to the summer or fall. We’ll see what happens.
  5. Run my first ultra???? I may have totally gone off my rocker. An ultra is on my bucket list, and if my plan for the year goes perfectly (no injury or unexpected surprises), I may attempt a 50k in September. But this is only if everything is perfect and I’m able to build mileage without injury.
  6. Average  40-50 miles a week Typically my mileage falls around 20-30 as the average. I want to up that and sustain that level of fitness. We’ll see.
  7. BE CONSISTENT IN WEIGHT TRAINING Ugh. I KNOW I need to incorporate weight training in my routine. I know this. It helps build strength, prevents injury, and contributes  to overall health. But I’m so bad at it! I’ll have a couple of weeks where I’ll be all in, and then I’ll fall off the wagon again. Grr. I really want to make more of an effort this year. At least twice a week. At least!
  8. Practice more yoga This is similar to the weight training. I know the benefits: flexibility, balance, muscle tone, pain management. All great! So why do I keep slacking? Again, twice a week. That’s totally manageable.

Motherhood Goals 2017

  1. Be Patient This is a constant struggle for me. I am not a patient person; I never have been. But one of my biggest goals is to practice patience. Often and deliberately. Everyone benefits from this.
  2. Stop yelling Hand in hand with practicing more patience is learning to control myself, i.e. stop yelling. It’s way more effective to lower you voice when disciplining your child. I know this. Yet, sometimes my sinful nature gets the best of me and I lose it. Not only is it poor parenting, but it’s completely ineffective.
  3. Watch less TV My hope is my entire household will learn to watch less TV. I’m not against TV, in fact I enjoy it at the end of the day as a way to unwind. But I’ve noticed for me personally, that there’s nothing really all the interesting on. For the children, they maybe watch anywhere from an hour to two a day. I have no problem with children watching TV, but I think we can cut that back.
  4. Spend less time on devices  Everywhere we look our phones are glue to our faces. Seriously! I like my phone and it serves me well, but both my husband and I can benefit from spending less time on it. I mean, really, what does it do for us? Nothing but suck our time away. Nobody has ever spent an hour doinking around on a phone and come away thinking, “I just did something productive.”
  5. Drink more water I’m shooting for about a gallon a day. We all know the benefits of drinking water so I don’t need to explain why.
  6. Eat well consistently We do it fairly well. It’s one thing my husband and I belive in and agree upon heavily. The month of January we’re doing a round of Whole 30 to reset out patterns. (Let’s just say Christmas was indulgent. Someone in this house ate an entire package of Oreos in a matter of days; he’s tall, handsome and redheaded.)
  7. Compliment my children daily  I think my children hear enough about the things they’re doing wrong. I’m going to make an effort to meaningfully compliment them daily.
  8. Spend more time outside I love being outside. Who doesn’t! But it’s hard with a small baby. Last summer, I don’t think I got out that often at all! I’m going to try and get out every day  during the spring and summer, and try to let the boys out few a minutes every day during the winter.
  9. Slow down and enjoy the moments I know these days are going to scream by and my children will be grown and gone. I know this. But, man, is it hard to appreciate the days when you’re trying to just survive. I really want to try and appreciate these moments when my children a small, and relish the time I have with them.

The thing about goals that is completely different than resolutions, is that there’s room to adapt, grow, change, and adjust the goal. And nobody laughs at you if by January 30 you’ve already slouched in your goals a bit. (Unlike the cliched resolution, am I right?)

So maybe take a moment this year, and think about where you’d like to be one year from now. Better shape? Debt free? Have less stress? Have your first baby? Think about the steps you need to take to get there and work toward that. Give yourself some grace if you fail to reach a goal, but keep working toward it. Resolutions are stupid, goals are awesome.

And I do still want to floss more.