Clergy Clatter

So – you may remember that pre-Lent I urged you to eat pancakes on Shrove Tuesday to “keep the tradition alive.” Thinking that I had better follow my own advice, I bought a box of pancake mix, syrup, and the other trimmings for a good Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper at home. But I have to admit that as Shrove Tuesday approached, the slightest sliver of doubt slithered around in my mind. As I mentioned somewhere else, I had not made pancakes since Cub Scouts. I don’t particularly like them, and I’m a klutz in the kitchen. But I also knew that if I copped out on this, I could never face you without a pang of guilt. Guilt is worse than pancakes.

So – off to the kitchen I went. Out came my largest non-stick frying pan that I had never used. Out came all the fixings, including a measuring cup, that hasn’t been used in years, a variety of spatulas, ladle, mixing bowl, etc. I carefully read the directions on the box of mix. Sounded really simple except that it instructed that they be cooked at 350 degrees. How do you do that when the stove dials say “low” and “high”, with a bunch of dots in between. Oh, I’ll just go half way. And temperature can’t be that critical.

So – I mixed my batter (looked right), ladled it into the pan – 3 nice big pancakes, and stood back and watched as the bubbles formed, just like it said they should. I peeked under the edge of a pancake and it was nice and brown. Time to flip the pancakes. WRONG! They had stuck to my non-stick frying pan. Now, I don’t mean a little stuck. These things were vulcanized to the pan. Off to the sink we went with trash can in hand.

So – before pouring my second batch, I rummaged through my cabinet and found an old spray can of grease, and covered the pan in it. The second batch wasn’t as bad. Only half of each pancake stuck. When I tried to turn them, they took on a life of their own and became big thick crepes, nice and brown on the outside, but raw and gooey on the inside. At least I was able to break them loose and set them aside.

So – I had enough batter for one more try. More spray grease. But by now the batter had really thickened up, and was sort of hard to get off the ladle. The end result was a couple of horrible, heavy, thick things that reminded me of scones. I don’t like scones, either. I ate about three bites – just so I could tell you that I truly did “hold up the tradition”. The remaining scraps of pancake – a significant amount – I chopped up and told the dog that they were special treats just for him. He woofed them down. All was not lost.

If I come at you with this “tradition bit” again, send me away, and have a Blessed Lent.

Richard +

March 1, 2021

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A compilation of The Rev. Richard O. Bridgford’s most memorable articles from his nearly 25 years at Church of the Epiphany. Enjoy history, humor, nature, travel, and wacky experiences with Fr. Bridgford, his two-legged and four-legged friends! Recall:

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  • the volcano that threatened his vacation
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One Comment

  1. I just finished reading the book and enjoyed it so much I am on your website looking for an archive of monthly clatters so I can bring myself up to date.
    BTW: I recommend iHop.

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