Everybody loves pancakes. Even people who don’t eat pancakes – carb cutters, fitness models, insanely picky toddlers who generally toss whatever you put in front of them on the floor – would rather be eating pancakes. In the event that your kid is so picky that they don’t like pancakes, never fear: It’s a scientific fact that no kid can turn down a pancake Yoda, which is way easier to make than you might think. Follow these simple steps and you can rest easy knowing your kid is getting at least 3 times the daily recommended amount of starch. As far as their veggies go, it’s actually possible to carve a Yoda out of carrots, but you’re on your own with that one.
- Squeeze Bottle ($6.08)
- Cast Iron Griddle ($23.95)
- Pancake batter – ($2.98 If you’re wondering, Hungry Jack won Good Housekeeping’s taste test)
- Ladle ($12)
- Pancake Turner ($11)
- Bowl ($24.95)
- … or, if you’re really lazy and a huge nerd, get the Star Wars pancake molds (starting around $12 on eBay)
- … or, if you’re really lazy and more of a Star Trek nerd, get the pancake replicator (currently funding on Kickstarter)
- Set Up Shop: While you heat the griddle, mix the batter so the texture is runny enough to squirt out of a bottle but thick enough that it will quickly spread out when it hits the griddle. Pour some batter into your squeeze bottle but leave plenty in the bowl for your ladle – you’ll need both.
- Begin With The Bottle: Whatever you “draw” with the squeeze bottle will grow darker by the second, so use it to create the most prominent lines in whatever you’re creating.
- Ladle The Rest: This batter will be lighter, so use it to fill in the spaces between the darker lines. Your finished masterpiece should be more ladle than squeeze bottle, since too many dark lines and Chewbacca will look like someone lit his face on fire.
- Senior Seminar: For more intricate designs, you can ditch the ladle in favor of more squeeze bottles with different shades of brown batter. Just mix hot chocolate powder in varying amounts into each bottle and arrange them darkest to lightest before you start cooking.
- Mind The Mirror Effect: These are pancakes, so you’re going to have to flip them before you done. If you’re trying to spell your kid’s name – or even just Superman’s “S,” remember to start backwards or you’ll give your kid a brain cramp. No one cares that writing backward will give you a brain cramp.
- Throw That Away: Everybody’s first pancake is a fail, with or without the art, so don’t feel bad. Sponge Bob CirclePants was a necessary casualty. Try again.
What They’ll Learn
- Cooking Is Fun: Watching someone cook pancakes is like watching paint dry, but watching someone create art is like watching really cool paint dry. They’ll want their own shot at pancake artistry as soon as they’re strong enough to squeeze the bottle, and from there it’s just a few decades (and a few hundred grand) to the graduation podium of the Culinary Institute Of America.
- Cooking Is Easy: Cooking can seem like a foreign language to the inexperienced, but before your kid develops a fear of the kitchen they’ll already have great memories of it. Once they realize that “cooking” = “pouring stuff on a hot surface,” everything seems easier.
- All Cooks Are Inferior To You: If you die tomorrow and your wife remarries, your kids will mock Bill and his lame, not-even-round normal pancakes.
The Internet Of Pancake Art
- Learn how to draw Yoda, Boba Fett, a Storm Trooper and Darth Vader.
- Take a tutorial from the Bob Ross of pancake art, Nathan Shields.
- If you’re an IHOP man, fear not. Their secret recipe is not so secret now.
- Read this Telegraph article for a detailed explanation on the art of cooking perfect pancakes.