I’ve been reading some mystery novels lately– from P.D. James’ The Private Patient to The Curious Incident of the Dog in Night-Time which is a mystery novel written from the perspective of an autistic teenager. The latter is really a good read. Its a YA (young adult) novel and therefore is pretty short and easy to read. (which is good when your eyes are droopy at night after a long day chasing a toddler around!) It purports to solve the mystery of a dog murder but actually solves more than that.
We had a mystery amongst our family too. It was not a murder mystery but instead involved pancakes that tasted like soap. We were visiting my grandmother Grand’s house in Burlington, NC over the weekend. Matt woke up with Jack, who decided that the crack of dawn was when the day needed to start on Saturday morning. He made Jack some pancakes and my grandmother and I ate them a little later. I immediately noticed the strong taste of dish soap, Joy to be specific. While Joy smells divine, I can attest that it tastes terrible. I immediately said—“These taste like soap! Does anyone else think they taste soapy?” Well, my grandmother is the very polite kind that wouldn’t say anything even if you were accidentally burning her house down– so she demurred. And Matt was silently thinking”Well, I guess Grand is getting older and she must not wash her dishes very well.” I meanwhile changed plates, forks, anything I could think of to get that awful taste away from the pancakes. Well– they kept tasting like soap. Matt just said “Put more syrup on it.” I did but they still tasted like soap. Every bit tasted and smelled– soapy. We finished our soapy tasting breakfast and went on with our day.
End of story. Or so we thought. Later that day, my aunt was doing the supper dishes and Matt started laughing very hard. He sputtered “I know why the pancakes tasted like soap.” I’m wondering at this point if any of you have any guesses?
I’ll start by backing up a little. At home we put our olive oil into a tall glass jar with a long metal spout. At Grand’s Matt saw a tall glass jar with a long metal spout that had a yellowish liquid in it. In the sleepy haze of 6 a.m. he decided to make the pancakes with this liquid. Grand DOES NOT keep her oil in said glass jar. She keeps her Joy dish soap next to the sink in a tall decorative glass jar with a long metal spout. Hence the origin of the soapy pancakes. In case you were wondering this is not a recipe. I don’t recommend cutting down on the fat in pancakes by replacing the oil with dish soap. It really doesn’t work well.