Welcome back, Readers! The picture above, which fits our literary/food theme so well (and apples for Fall…what could be better!), comes to us from literarytravels.net. The caption under their photo states, “From Proust’s Madeleines to William Faulkner’s Mint Juleps, great literature has always influenced readers’ experiences of food.” Even though I focus this blog series on new novels, and the authors who wrote them, the sentiment rings true.
For today’s installment of my food-tastic blog series, I introduce you to author CC Dowling…and Liv, the main character of her novel, CONDUIT. To get us started, here is a scene from the novel which mentions the recipe included here.
Set up: Liv is on her way out the door for the first day of school when she spots breakfast.
As I head to the back door to get my bike, something in the kitchen catches my eye. Pancakes! I drop my backpack with a thud and belly-up to the breakfast counter.
Elia knows I can’t resist her almond meal and flax seed pancakes with pure Grade B maple syrup. I dump way too much syrup on the plate before unfolding the note that’s in serious danger of becoming sticky.
Today is a big day for you, the first of many to come. I read in an online article that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I know, I know…the debate rages on. Just in case it’s true, I hope you will consider this pancake offering as brain food—not that you need any help.
I’m so proud of you.
Knock em dead.
Tears fill my eyes, threatening to spill over and streak my mascara. Using the note as a fan, I dry my tears, resisting the urge to rub and smear my mascara. When I’m sure the moment is passed, I toss the note into my backpack and lick every last crumb from my plate before putting it in the sink.
Now, in her own words, here is Liv Hartley, from CONDUIT, by CC Dowling.
Hello everybody! My name’s Vivienne Hartley, but you can call me Liv for short. I’m a freshman studying naturopathic medicine at the California College of Natural Health in sunny Fallbrook, just north of San Diego. A few fun facts about me: I ride my bike everywhere, when I’m not jumping through dimensional portals; I’ve died once already and it isn’t fun, I don’t recommend it; and I have a love of food. Seriously, I can’t get enough, especially when my mom cooks. Her all organic, health conscious food with ‘tude makes even my grumpy afterlife caseworker mumble a polite request for seconds.
So, in the spirit of sharing (Ha! Yes, even the dead like puns), here is the recipe for Elia’s famous-to-me gluten free, paleo friendly, banana and cinnamon pancakes she made for me the first day of school. Because she loves me. And because she rocks.
Banana Cinnamon Pancakes
- 1 ½ cups pancake mix (obviously, Elia makes hers from scratch. But I’m a student. I don’t have time for that.)
- 1 1/3 cup Almond Milk (I used sugar free because I don’t need the extra sugar.)
- 1 ½ very ripe banana (Either fresh or frozen is fine.)
- 1 to 2 tsp cinnamon depending on taste
- 1 Tbsp Raw, organic Cacao powder (Or more to preference.)
- For added flavor you can add a pinch of sea salt and/or vanilla or almond extract
- Actually, you can add anything you want. I mean, be creative people
- Mix ingredients with a blender. Why? Because it’s easier. If the mixture isn’t runny enough, you can add either more almond milk or water until desired consistency is reached.
- Heat cast iron skillet on medium heat and add a dollop of coconut oil.
- Cook pancakes in batches depending on size of pan. Also, if the pan gets too hot, you can remove it from the flame for about sixty seconds and then resume cooking.
- When you’re done, garnish with blueberries and grade B maple syrup. Also, if you have a study hangover from the night before, and you want to treat yourself right, you can add chocolate chips into the batter. Your mouth will thank you. Trust me.
Ta da! Congratulations! You now have amazing, delicious brain food to last you the day. Well, at least until lunch. I hope you enjoy, and I hope you add to your reading list CONDUIT, Book 1 of the Infinity Series, written by CC Dowling. It’s a story about me trying to figure out the afterlife, and how to have a life. You might have to wait until 2017 to get that novel into your hot little hands, but you don’t have to wait to enjoy my favorite pancakes.
OH! Also, if you have a brilliant, amazing, utterly yummy idea on how to improve said pancakes, please leave a comment, and I will try them all. Uh, probably. Maybe. Depending on what you suggest.
Two things happen to Liv Hartley the day she turns eighteen: Freshman orientation and a tattoo. College she’s got covered. After all, she was a senior when she died the first time. The tattoo, that’s something new.
Liv quickly discovers there are consequences to bearing the coveted infinity symbol marking her as a Conduit—a reincarnated messenger of the Otherworld. When reaping souls, dodging a possessive demon, and straightening out her love life are the least of her worries, she’ll soon realize that getting a second chance doesn’t mean getting a better one.
With more questions piling up than either answers or bodies, there’s only one thing Liv knows for sure. Life doesn’t get any easier after death.
About the author:
When she was a child, CC Dowling knew two things. That she would never have kids, and she would be a writer, which makes her right half the time. CC currently lives in America’s finest city with her grade schooler (who plays in the back yard with the faeries), her toddling daughter (who loves everyone and can’t stop smiling), her husband (the financial shaman), her aussie (with mesmerizing blue eyes), and her very real pet dragon (who guards the perimeter of her house at night). When she’s not working or writing (which is still technically working), CC can be found lost in a good book and a dark piece of chocolate, or desperately trying to figure out which pair of sandals are the most appropriate for the harsh Southern California winters.
Her debut novel, CONDUIT, is the first in a New Adult Paranormal series.