Saturday, January 14, 2017

Texas cafe promotes "Peace Through Pancakes"

"Make plenty. They go like hotcakes."
My wife went to visit her people in Texas over Christmas. She came back with gifts, including a box of Kerbey Lane Cafe gingerbread pancake mix. It was minus  one cup of mix, because when nephew Canon, 6, saw her packing the box to bring back home to me he said, "Oh, gingerbread pancakes, that's what I want for breakfast." Of course, he got pancakes the next morning, made by Aunt Dee, who spoils him, and I don't blame her. She knew Uncle R.D. back up in the Missouri Ozarks would not mind sharing.

Those pancakes really hit the spot this morning, the second day of Icemageddon in Southern Missouri. The thermometer with a sensor on my front porch reads 33.9 degrees, so maybe quite a bit of the ice on the power lines will melt and make room for the second wave of freezing rain that is supposedly coming in late tonight to continue until 10 a.m., when my Sunday School class starts. If the weatherman is accurate, I guess I'll be missing church again Sunday. Maybe I'll make up for it with another batch of gingerbread pancakes.

My first gingerbread pancakes ever in my life were served to me for breakfast at the Kerbey Lane Cafe on Kerbey Lane in Austin when I went down to visit Delaine's home state and meet her family. They were fine pancakes, mighty fine.

The story Delaine told was that Kerbey Lane Cafe, located in a renovated old house, was supposedly started years ago by some hippies who grew most of the food themselves on a communal farm outside Austin. I don't know where she heard that story, or maybe she was just pulling my leg, for she is prone to do that. I believed that for years, and I tried from time to time to replicate the gingerbread pancakes here in the kitchen.

Now, I have the official Kerbey Lane Cafe pancake mix, so I can have gingerbread pancakes from time to time until the mix runs out.

As I made the pancakes this morning, I read the package, and it seems to try to promote some kind of hippie ethic on it. "Peace Through Pancakes" is one of the slogans on one side.

What's interesting is that there is a website address on it, and I checked it out. I also found a couple of other articles about Kerbey Lane Cafe, one on The Austin Chronicle site and one on Culture Map Austin.

Here's an article from 2010: The Austin Chronicle.

Here's an article from 2015: Culture Map Austin.

The Austin Chronicle article shows that the restaurant company owners, not hippies and not communal farm dwellers, did indeed try to use locally grown produce and meat for the items on their menu. Reading the newer Culture Map article, I'm not quite sure that is the case with the new management, headed up by the son of the couple that started it.

So those hippies, if ever they were such, have gone all corporate capitalist on us now. Not that I, a far-right conservative, mind that at all, although I hope they still have that commitment to local growers and local food.

The Kerbey Lane empire has grown to seven restaurants in and around Austin, and the goal is to build in other states. They also hope to go national with their pancake mix. It would be nice to be able to go to Aldi, Kroger, Price Chopper or Walmart to find a box of gingerbread pancake mix on cold mornings like we are experiencing this weekend.


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