Rich Blue Cornmeal and Applesauce Pancakes + Lost Things

by Laura on October 10, 2011

The summer is fading now.  I know it’s autumn, of course, but it’s been so unseasonably warm in Minnesota these past weeks that, despite the leaves changing color and blowing from the trees, in my mind it’s still summertime.   And I wish it were still summer, before everything had changed and I had lost so many things.  I haven’t posted for a long time, in part I think because I wanted either to go back or to skip forward, until things were better again, easy and sweet and summery.   Loss is hard.  And that’s okay.   We muster the will or courage to go forward.  Or we get out of bed and the day passes until we can, which is its own kind of will and courage.  Somehow it gets better.  Or I hope it does.   No, it does.  Even when the losses still feel like the whole big bowl of the sky, small things begin to appear again, babe in woods moments of acute awareness when the wind as I drive or a blue cornmeal pancake roots me in the present for a moment and takes me away from the losses.  And moments when a friend understands that there is no making this better, no easy solution, no pat answer, understands that I’m okay and more than just the losses, and that silent support means more than anything else.  Then gratitude comes rushing in and eclipses all that seems so hard to bear.  And I know that autumn will come, and winter, and spring, and maybe next year by the time summer comes again things really will be better, the losses will seem smaller or more distant and certainly not the whole big bowl of the sky anymore.  I’ll hold on for that.

Rich Blue Cornmeal and Applesauce Pancakes
Yield: ten five-inch diameter pancakes

1 c. all purpose flour (I prefer King Arthur.)
1 c. stone ground blue cornmeal
1 T. baking powder
¼ c. dark brown sugar
a pinch of salt
2 large eggs
3/4 c. natural, unsweetened applesauce
½ c. half and half
1 c. milk
¼ c. (½ stick) unsalted butter, melted
canola or other neutral oil for the griddle


  • In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, blue cornmeal, baking powder, dark brown sugar, and salt.
  • In a small bowl, beat the eggs with a fork and stir in the applesauce, half and half, milk, and melted butter.
  • Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients with a fork, mixing only until combined. There will be lumps in the batter. Do not overmix.
  • Heat a griddle or large frying pan over medium heat. (312 degrees F is ideal.) When it is hot, drizzle in a little oil. When the oil is hot, pour in ½ c. batter per pancake.
  • Fry the pancakes until bubbles form across the top and the edges look dry.
  • Flip each pancake and fry on the other side.
  • Add a bit more oil to the pan with each batch to fry.
  • Serve hot with butter and maple syrup. (Pure maple syrup is best.)

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lizzi October 10, 2011 at 10:00 pm

You’re back! You’re back! You’re back and I’m so glad!

I am sorry to hear times have been hard… but I’m certain that if anyone can find the silver lining, it’s you.

2 Laura October 10, 2011 at 10:38 pm

You’re going to make me cry, Lizzi.

3 Jesica@PencilKitchen October 11, 2011 at 3:46 am

Amazing… And healthy too!

4 Anna October 11, 2011 at 4:14 am

Pancakes can always uplift our spirits. They are morning staples and morning will always remind us of a new day, a fresh start! Perfect recipe for a grumbling tummy and a spirit that is starting to heal…

5 kris October 11, 2011 at 3:09 pm

I’m so happy to see your blog appear in my email!

6 Laura October 11, 2011 at 5:18 pm

Thank you.

7 Joyce October 13, 2011 at 8:18 am

Laura, I’ve missed you so!
I’m uncertain what’s happened in your life, but I send you all the support I can muster and I have faith that you, of all people, are strong enough to overcome whatever it is.

8 Laura October 13, 2011 at 8:59 am

Thank you. Truly.

9 Jora October 19, 2011 at 11:16 am

Whatever you are going through, know that there are many people out here thinking of you and hoping it gets easier sooner than later.

10 Laura October 19, 2011 at 5:33 pm

I’m so touched. Thank you so much.

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