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Gluten Free Pancake Crash Course

So now that you’ve had this container of gluten-free flour mix sitting in your cupboard for the better part of a month, are you ready to do something with it?

That’s right, after yet another (and even longer) blogging hiatus, we have returned and this time we come bearing gifts…

And by gifts we mean pancakes, of course!

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Because here at Two Saucy Sisters, we believe that thick, fluffy pancakes should be accessible to everyone- including our gluten-free friends! ūüôā

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We decided to go with a basic, plain pancake recipe here to allow you guys to have some fun with it and add whatever you want to them. ¬†Chocolate chips, blueberries, cinnamon and raisins, or maybe for the more adventurous you want to try adapting some of our other pancake recipes- how about banana nut? Strawberry Shortcake? ¬†Pumpkin Gingerbread? ¬†Or why not Chocolate-Banana Upside Down pancakes? ¬†Are you drooling yet? ūüėČ

Of course, we couldn’t just have plain pancakes for breakfast (where’s the fun in that?) so, in the spirit of Fall, we topped ours with a little pear-apple concoction!

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Cinnamon, pears, apples, raisins and a splash of maple syrup goes a looong way, people!

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But before you go running to your kitchen to make these, let’s have a little chat about gluten-free baking. ¬†Well, okay, we suppose making pancakes isn’t exactly baking, per se, but it’s close enough, in our opinions!

The main thing to remember when adapting a recipe to use gluten free flour is that different types of flours have different liquid-holding capacities, so always cut back on the liquid by at least a third, then gradually add liquid in until you’ve reached the consistency you want. ¬†Which leads us to rule #2: when using gluten-free flour, your batter should be thicker than when using standard white or whole-wheat flour. ¬†This is especially true for pancakes if you want them to be thick and fluffy, which is obviously what¬†everyone¬†wants in a good pancake!

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Lastly, you will notice that we added a bit of coconut flour to the batter. ¬†This is not¬†entirely¬†necessary (in fact, our first trial didn’t use it) but it really does help make the pancakes thicker and fluffier. ¬†If you`re worried about a coconutty flavour, fear not because the small amount we’ve added doesn’t change the taste one bit! ¬†Coconut flour is also really easy to find (in Canada you can get it at the Bulk Barn). ¬†But if you decide to leave it out, you may want to cut back on the liquid slightly.

Anyways, now that you’ve been given a crash-course on gluten free pancake making, we hope you enjoy our recipe, and have fun adding all sorts of yummy add-ins to them! ūüôā

Gluten-Free Basic Pancakes

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 2

Ingredients:

2/3 c. High-fibre gluten-free flour blend
2 tbsp coconut flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon

1 egg, beaten
1/2 c. milk of choice (add more if necessary)
1/2 tsp vinegar
1 tbsp maple syrup or honey
1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

Pre-heat a non-stick skillet or pancake griddle over medium-high heat.

In a medium-sized bowl, combine all the dry ingredients.  Combine the wet ingredients in a separate, small bowl.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined.

Drop spoonfuls of batter onto the pan (we found these worked better if we made them a little smaller). ¬†Once you see bubbles start to form and the edges begin to cook, flip and cook for another 2-3 minutes. ¬†Keep warm while cooking the remaining batter. ¬†Top with fruit, maple syrup, nuts, or whatever else you’d like! ¬†(Our recipe for the apple-pear “sauce” is below!)

Apple-Pear “Sauce”

1 apple, diced
1 pear, diced
1 tbsp corn starch or arrowroot flour
1 tsp cinnamon
3 tbsp raisins
1 tbsp maple syrup
1/4 c. water

Directions:

Add all ingredients except water to a small pot and stir to combine.  Add the water and bring to a boil.  Cook on high for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.  Turn the heat to low and simmer, stirring every couple minutes, until the apples and pears are cooked and the sauce has thickened.

~twosaucysisters

Have you ever tried adopting a recipe to be gluten-free?  What was challenging about it?

Summer’s End

Hi everybody- Long time no see!

Between being away up north in Magnetawan¬†all last week with no access to internet (or showers, we might add…) and moving into our new house in London this week (also with no internet access yet- thank you Starbucks for your free wifi!) we have basically fallen off the face of the planet. ¬†The blog planet, that is!

We have also done hardly any cooking over the past few days (unless you count thawing muffins in the microwave as cooking…) so we are seriously lacking in blog topics and recipes to share with you. ¬†But being that it is the start of the new school year and we are currently feeling rather nostalgic about the summer, this is the perfect time to do a summer recipe recap post!

So, without further ado, we give you our favourite recipes from this summer…

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Blackened Salmon

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Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork

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Zucchini Pesto Noodles with Turkey Meatballs

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Strawberry Asparagus Corn Salad with Chicken

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Quinoa Pesto Tabouleh Salad

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Easy Greek Salad

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Basil-Sage-Arugula-Walnut Pesto

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Tzatziki Hummus

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No-Bake Chocolate Lavender Tart

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Chocolate-Peanut Butter Layer Cake

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Chocolate-Peanut Butter Rice Krispie Freezer Bars

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No-Bake Peanut Butter Banana Granola Bars

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana “Ice Cream”

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Peach Crumble Bars

So as you can see, we spent some time doing a little grilling this summer, enjoyed all the delicious fruits and veggies that summer has to offer, and apparently really enjoyed making chocolate-peanut butter-banana everything (which we honestly didn’t realize until writing this post- evidently we’re a little obsessed).

It was a fantastic summer and we’re sad to see it end, but we’re looking forward to a great 4th year here at Western University¬†and another great season with the Mustangs!

Our posting may still be a little sporadic over the next little while as we continue to get settled in, but we’ll try to check back with everyone in a few days!

~twosaucysisters 

Just Peachy!

It’s August in Ontario. Know what that means?

Peach Season!

One of our absolute favourite times of year, especially living in an area that is well known for the peaches that grow here. We even have a festival specifically for them, where they serve the world’s best (yes, we said it) peach sundaes. In fact, the peaches here are¬†so good¬†that we¬†only¬†eat peaches this time of year. To buy some overpriced ¬†picked-way-before-it’s-ripe peach that’s shipped thousands of miles and isn’t even that good of peach would be doing this magnificent fruit such injustice!

No, we will only eat fresh Ontario Peaches. Call us princesses, we don’t care!

We’ve made Peaches and Cream Baked Oatmeal, Fish Fingers with a Peach Dipping Sauce, a Peach Blondie Breakfast Parfait, Peach Pancakes a La Mode, Peach Raspberry Overnight Oats, Peach Salsa, Peach-Tomato Chutney¬†and so much more! But for today’s post, we thought we’d play up the sweeter side of a peach…

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Using an old date square recipe, we came up with a healthy treat that’s not only delicious, but actually stays together!

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Now don’t get us wrong, they are still Peach¬†Crumble¬†bars, meaning the crumb topping can get a little messy. Unlike many date square recipes we come across, however, they are not dry or overly sweet.

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This recipe took more than one trial to get right, and frankly, we’re proud of the results! The first time we made them, they were a little too salty and just a tad on the dry side – neither of which stopped our family from gobbling them up anyways! We knew that with just a couple minor tweaks here and there, they would be perfect!

DSCN6319So go buy yourself some fresh, local peaches and celebrate the season with a peachy treat! ūüôā

Peach Crumble Bars

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Prep time: 20-30min
Bake time: 30-35min
Makes: 12 bars

Ingredients:

6 ripe, medium sized peaches
2 tbsp honey

1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. ground nuts (we used almonds and walnuts)
2 c. oats
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1/3 c. + 1tbsp honey or maple syrup
1/2 c. + 1 tbsp coconut oil

Directions:

Pre-heat oven to 350 F.
Peel and slice the peaches. Toss with honey and set aside.
In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients. Melt the coconut oil and combine with honey or maple syrup. Mix into the dry ingredients until there are no dry patches and you have a somewhat crumbly mixture.
Remove 2 cups of the crumble mixture and set aside.
Spread the remaining oat mixture in the bottom of a greased 9X9inch square baking pan. Using the back of a lifter/spatula, press the mixture firmly into the bottom of the pan. Pour the honeyed peaches over the top and spread evenly across the pan. Take the reserved 2 cups of oat mixture and sprinkle it evenly over the top.
Bake for 30-35min, or until the crumb begins to turn a golden brown.

~twosaucysisters

What’s your favourite way to enjoy fresh peaches?

**ps- we will be away all this week at Cross Country Training camp, so we apologize in advance if we do not respond to any comments/questions right away, we will be sure to read them as soon as we return!  Have a great week everybody!

Curve Balls and Ice Cream

Sometimes life can throw some serious curve balls at you.

One minute, you think you’ve got it all together. ¬†You’re certain of yourself- you’re confident, happy. ¬†You’ve got plenty of friends and family and everything is smooth sailing.

Then one small change can throw you right off. ¬†All of a sudden you’re left questioning whether what you thought all along was real. ¬†Something you thought was one thing seems to be something else entirely. ¬†You start wondering if this entire time you were in the middle of some big joke that no one let you in on.

Yeah, sometimes life gives you not-so-pleasant and unexpected surprises.

And then sometimes it gives you ice cream.

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But here’s what we’re not going to do: We’re not going to tell you that this “ice cream” is as rich and decadent as a bowlful of Haagen Dazs or Ben and Jerry’s. ¬†Sorry everyone, but that kind of sinful deliciousness cannot be achieved without the addition of cream and sugar, which doesn’t really work with the whole healthy food blog thing…

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However, we will tell you what it¬†does¬†have: ¬†Banana, chocolate and peanut butter. ¬†Some of you may think we’ve over-done that flavour combo over here, but we can’t disagree more! ¬†You can never have too much peanut butter-chocolate-banana. ¬†You just can’t.

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So although this may not be as indulgent as regular ice cream, this stuff makes for a pretty delicious, simple and healthy summer snack or dessert. ¬†And that’s the honest truth.

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Because you know what? ¬†Sometimes things happen that you wish hadn’t, and sometimes people disappoint you- but chocolate, peanut butter and banana will not. ¬†So enjoy, friends!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana “Ice Cream”

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Prep: 10 minutes
Chill: 2-3 hours (optional)
Serves: 3-4 people

Ingredients:

4 ripe bananas
1/4 c. peanut butter
2 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tbsp milk
pinch of salt

Directions:

Peel the bananas and place on a tray lined with wax paper. ¬†Place in the freezer and chill for 2-3 hours, or until the bananas are frozen or almost frozen. (We recommend doing this with a whole bunch of bananas and then just keeping the frozen bananas in your freezer all the time to use whenever you’d like)

Slice the bananas and place them in a food processor along with all other ingredients.  Blend on high speed until the mixture becomes smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides as necessary.

You can eat it right away as soft serve, or you can pour the mixture into an air-tight container and freeze for 2-3 hours for a more “hard-scoop” kind of ice cream.

~twosaucysisters

Simple Sunday: Another Summer Salad

This morning we were reminded just how much we love the Summer.  We went for a run and it was just so beautiful outside we felt like we could have run forever.  And we have to say that so far this has been one of the best running summers we have had in a long time.  Yes, the heat wave we had a couple weeks ago was a bit much (although we refuse to complain!), but that has gone away and left us with beautiful days like today.

But Summer isn’t just awesome because of its blue skies and warm temperatures. ¬†The abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables that can be found at local stands on just about every corner cannot be discounted! ¬†We know we’ve mentioned this many times before and we don’t mean to be repetitive, but every time we eat a fresh tomato from our own garden, or snack on juicy cherries from just down the road, we can’t help but be reminded of how¬†delicious the summer is!

Which is why we made this salad- to showcase the season’s best!

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This salad brings together what in our minds are sort of like the three “stages” of summer produce. ¬†First comes the asparagus in the spring (which is basically like early summer in our opinions!), then you start to get into more of the actual summer months and get strawberries, and then of course the summer is capped off with delicious, sweet corn.

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Of course, there are a million other fruits and veggies that make an appearance during those times, too, like fiddle heads and leafy greens in the spring, cherries, blueberries, raspberries and apricots mid-summer, and peaches are starting to hit the stands now too! ūüôā

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Add some chicken and a little tahini drizzle and you’ve got yourself and easy, delicious and fresh-tasting summer meal! ¬†And feel free to change it up a bit, too- local strawberries might be a little tougher to find now, but cherries are out full-force and would work wonderfully in this salad. ¬†The idea is to use whatever summer produce you can find.

We hope you are enjoying your summer as much as we are, and be sure to hit up your local farmer’s market to take advantage of all this awesome food nature has to offer!

Strawberry Asparagus and Corn Salad

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Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20-30 minutes
Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

1 bunch of asparagus, ends trimmed
1 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 c. strawberries, sliced
1 c. corn (fresh or frozen)
1 clove of garlic, minced
salt and pepper

2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper

For the tahini drizzle:

3 tbsp tahini
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 tsp garlic powder
salt and pepper
2-3 tbsp water

Directions:

Sprinkle the chicken with garlic powder, salt and pepper and bake in a 350F oven for 20-30 minutes, or until done.  Alternatively you can barbecue the chicken over medium heat for 20-30 minutes if you prefer.

Meanwhile, toss the asparagus in olive oil, salt and pepper.  Roast in the oven for about 15 minutes until they can be easily pierced with a fork, or grill over medium heat for 10-15 minutes.  Set aside.

In a frying pan over medium heat, add a small amount of olive oil.  Add the garlic and corn and saute until the corn begins to blacken a bit.  Turn off the heat and add the strawberries so they cook down just a little bit and release some of their juices into the corn.

Cut the asparagus into bit-sized pieces and add to the pan.  Season with salt and pepper and stir until everything is combined.  Slice the chicken and divide the salad onto separate plates.  Place the chicken on top and finish with the tahini drizzle.

For the Tahini Drizzle:

Combine all ingredients except the water and stir until fully combined.  Slowly add the water until the mixture is drippy but still slightly thick.  Drizzle over top of salad.

~twosaucysisters

What is your favourite part about Summer?  What is the weather like where you live?  How do you like to take advantage of these beautiful days?

If You Can’t Take the Heat… Turn off the Oven

We’re not sure what the weather’s doing over in your neck of the woods, but here in Ontario we just came out of a 2-week long heat wave. ¬†We’re talking 107F. ¬†And this is not a dry heat, this is a hair-frizzing pore-clogging kind of heat that basically renders sweating useless. ¬†(Not that our bodies got that memo- every time we came in from a run we looked like we had just gone swimming fully clothed- how’s that for a pretty picture for ya?)

Anyways, we think it goes without saying that in that kind of heat turning on the oven is completely out of the question.  Even barbecuing seemed like a bad idea, so we were really at a loss as to what to make for dinner for our family.

We’d also like to take this moment to blame the heat wave for our decided lack of posts lately. ¬†We’ve hardly been doing any cooking so we really haven’t had much to share with you guys. ¬†Because you can only post so many salad recipes.

Anyways, we’ll stop making excuses for ourselves and continue on to the good part!

As we said in Tuesday’s post¬†, we had a delicious recipe that uses our pesto¬†coming your way, so here it is…

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Quinoa Salad!

Ok, so right after saying that we didn’t want to start throwing a whole bunch of salad recipes at you what’s the first thing we do? ¬†Give you a salad recipe. ¬†But this is a¬†quinoa¬†salad, so it’s a little different and doesn’t really count.

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We discovered quinoa for the first time a few years ago and basically become obsessed with it. ¬†We started putting it in almost everything we made so it found its way onto the dinner table several times a week. ¬†It became a running joke in our family that if you didn’t know what was in something, it was most likely quinoa. ¬†It got to the point where every time we made anything everyone would ask if there was quinoa in it.

We suppose it was a tad excessive…

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So while the quinoa-craze of 3 summers ago has passed, we still do like to break it out every once in a while. ¬†And it was the perfect thing in this heat wave because it’s a great source of protein that can be cooked in 10 minutes on the stove-top. ¬†Minimal prep and minimal heat required. ¬†Which means more time in the pool- the only suitable place to be during weather like that!

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We had a wicked storm last night that took some of the heat away, so we will most likely be turning on the barbecue again, but you can be sure that if another heat wave like that hits we will be making this salad again! ¬†In fact, even if it doesn’t get so hot, we will probably make this tasty dish again anyways ūüôā

Quinoa Pesto Tabouleh Salad

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Prep: 20 minutes
Rest Time: at least 30 minutes
Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

1 c. quinoa (any colour)
2 c. water

1 recipe of Sage-Basil-Arugula-Walnut Pesto
1c. bell peppers (any colour), diced
1/2 large seedless cucumber, diced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 c. chickpeas, drained and rinsed

Directions:

Place the quinoa and water in a medium-sized pot and bring to a boil, uncovered.  Once the water has started to boil, place the lid on top and turn the heat to low.  Allow the quinoa to simmer for 10 minutes.  Turn of the heat and allow to sit on the burner for another 6 minutes.  Remove from the burner, take off the lid and fluff with a fork. Set aside to cool.

Combine the veggies and chickpeas in a large bowl.  Add the quinoa and stir to make sure the vegetables are evenly distributed.  Add the pesto and stir well.  Place in the fridge and allow to sit for at least 30 minutes, so the quinoa has a chance to cool and the flavours have the chance to mingle.

Optional: add some chopped walnuts, dried cranberries, or feta cheese to the salad.

~twosaucysisters

What kinds of things do you make when you’re in the middle of a heat wave?

Rockin’ and Rollin’

We’re pretty sure it has been¬†ages¬†since we’ve talked about pancakes over here- did you think we had given up eating them?

Of course, that would crazy talk!  Who in their right mind would ever give up eating pancakes?

Not us, that’s for sure! ¬†Rest assured, there has been no shortage of pancakes over here, but our pancakes have been looking a little different lately…

You see, we’ve discovered a new way to make pancakes, and quite frankly we may never eat them any other way ever again!

Ladies and gentlemen, we give you the pancake parfait roll-up!

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Seriously people, this is a genius idea! ¬†It’s a fruit-and-yogurt parfait all wrapped up in a thick, fluffy pancake- does it get any better than that?

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This recipe is inspired by an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and¬†Dives¬†seen while doing hamstring curls at the gym. ¬†That’s right, we watch foodie shows while lifting weights…

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Unfortunately there was no sound to accompany the show¬†(yes, we watch silent foodie shows while lifting weights…)¬†so we have no idea what restaurant was being featured and cannot properly give credit to whoever came up with this fantastic idea.

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But we can share it with the world!

So what is so great about a pancake roll-up? ¬†It takes about¬†half¬† the time of regular pancakes! ¬†Think about it- one giant pancake vs. making a whole bunch of small ones? ¬†Some of you cool kids might have one of those awesome pancake griddles that have enough space to cook a million pancakes all at once, but for those of us who don’t, this is a huge time-saver!

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And the faster you can cook pancakes, the sooner you can eat them. ¬†And of course, fluffy pancake + creamy yogurt + sweet fruit + crunchy granola = breakfast heaven. ūüôā

So go make use of all the delicious fruit that is hitting its prime right now, and make yourself this to-die-for breakfast- you may never eat pancakes the same way again!

Pancake Parfait Roll-Up

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 2

Ingredients:

2/3 c. whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional)

1 egg, beaten
2/3 c. buttermilk
1 tbsp maple syrup

1 c. yogurt
1 c. fruit of choice
3/4 c. granola

Directions:

Preheat a large frying pan sprayed with cooking spray.

Combine the dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl.  In a separate bowl combine the wet ingredients.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until just combined.  Divide the batter in half and pour onto the frying pan.  Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until bubbles begin to form on the surface and the edges begin to firm.  Flip and cook for another 2 minutes, then remove to a plate.  Repeat with the rest of the batter.

Spread the pancake with yogurt then sprinkle with fruit and granola.  Roll up and top with the rest of the yogurt, fruit and granola.  Drizzle with a little maple syrup if desired.

~twosaucysisters

Do you ever watch the T.V. at the gym? ¬†Have you ever seen a recipe from a T.V. show that you’ve tried recreating? ¬†How did it turn out?