“A winner is a dreamer who never gives up.” — Nelson Mandela

Election Day has come and gone, and as we waited for the results, I found myself craving pancakes. Giant, fluffy, tender, blueberry-stuffed pancakes, with puddles of butter melting into decadent drizzles of maple syrup. Warm, welcoming, pancakes are the only food that can calm my anxiety, soothe my senses, and remind me that the sweetness of life still exists.

Sometimes preparing a delicious life means listening to your heart, and feeding yourself the specific foods that bring you joy. There is a time and a place for all occasional indulgences, especially those that comfort and sustain. Whether it be a steaming bowl of oatmeal, laced with brown sugar and drizzled with heavy cream, chocolate chip cookies warm from the oven, a generous scoop of ice cream, be sure to select something that will superbly satisfy.

There is a difference between mindlessly overindulging in large quantities of fat and sugar laden choices, and consciously enjoying a favorite treat. Try to savor your chosen luxury slowly, really tasting the jubilation of what’s on your plate.

As our nation strives to move forward, each of us will find ways to adjust and adapt to a new world.

Our dreams will never die, so long as we feed them, tend to them, and honor them. Cooking and eating healthy foods will arm us with the nutrients necessary to keep working, striving and surviving.

Nurture yourself with kindness, one pancake at a time, as you prepare your delicious life.

Winning Blueberry Pancakes

Makes 12 average size or 3-4 giant pancakes

2 eggs large

1 and 1/2cups buttermilk

2 teaspoons vanilla or almond extract

3 tablespoons melted butter

1 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

2 tablespoons sugar

1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium-low to medium heat. Grease the pan with oil or butter.

When it’s hot enough, a drop of water will skitter across the surface and immediately evaporate.

In one bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk and vanilla or almond extract until light and foamy. Whisk in the melted butter. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir gently, just until combined. Do NOT overmix. Pour batter by 1/4 cupfuls for average size pancakes or 3/4-1 cupfuls for big pancakes into pan. Sprinkle a handful of berries on top. Cook the pancakes until bubbles start to form on top and the sides start to firm up, about 3-4 minutes. Flip and cook for another few minutes, or until golden brown. Serve right away with pure maple syrup, butter, cinnamon sugar, sliced bananas, toasted almonds, walnuts or any other embellishment you desire.

Robin Glowa, HHC, AADP, “The Conscious Cook,” writes about preparing a delicious life and presents healthy food workshops throughout New England. She is a professional cook, organic gardener and a graduate of The Institute for Integrative Nutrition and Columbia University Teachers College.