A Vegan Pancake By any Other Name

So you tell me; when is a pancake not a pancake? Maybe when it's a waffle? Ba-Da-Bing! But seriously folks, a pancake can be a pancake, but it's not a vegan pancake unless all the items even remotely derived from animals are eliminated and replaced with cruelty-free products. That means no refined sugar, no butter, and who knows what else. So tell me, will I feel less guilty eating a vegan pancake?

I fully respect disciples of a vegan lifestyle to feel the need to eat only animal-free products. But would someone tell me how there can be any conflict of principles, any selling out on the part of the consumer, by eating something so simple as a pancake? How is a vegan pancake a better pancake? In terms of vegan food, I'll concede on most issues. I admire the vegan man or woman for eating a healthier variety of foods and no meat. I myself can't do it. Actually, I can do it; I just don't want to do it. And when it comes to pancakes, I want mine the size of a plate, big and fluffy, with syrup and butter and who knows what else. I want an American pancake. I don't want a vegan pancake. I don't want to agonize while eating a pancake if the milk or sugar or any other ingredient came at the expense of an animal that had feelings too. An animal that had a family. An animal that wanted to provide it's family a better way of life. I just want to eat the damn pancake and be left alone.

I cruised the internet and found no less than 50 recipes for a vegan pancake. That means there are at least 50 different ways of eliminating some basic ingredients that have been used to make pancakes since my grandmother was a little girl. That's 50 different ways of making a vegan pancake. I also found out that most of the new-age ingredients used for making a vegan pancake can be purchased in what is known as a vegan store. So there's a store that caters no only to lovers of a vegan pancake, but to every vegan who protests cruelty to animals.

Darn it if the concept isn't a good one. A vegan store where they offer products that are animal-free. Because you know, vegans don't just draw the line at food. It's EVERYTHING. I now know that somewhere out there in the entrepreneur-verse is a shop that makes shoes and belts and coats out of something besides leather. I'm not sure what the ingredient it. Is it vinyl? I don't think vinyl comes from a cow. All I know is there are a lot of clothing items that are made with... some secret ingredient that has nothing to do with animals. Hallelujah and pass the Bar-B-Q sauce!

I did some digging and found out that many factories use hemp. Hemp - in case you didn't know - is a derivative of marijuana. Which, the last time I checked was illegal. I don't know how you make a shoe or a belt of a shirt out of hemp. But I imagine if you get bored, you can always try to strip down and smoke your clothes. Which brings me to another point of contention: the vegan will not eat any meat, but they will support the use of an illegal product to make clothing? Something doesn't taste right here and I'm not just talking about a vegan pancake either.

Well, I can't say I haven't been enlightened. I sat down with my daughter and followed recipe number 28 (remember there were no less than 50 recipes on the internet for vegan pancakes). And it tasted like...well...not like any pancake I'm used to eating. I think it was because this pancake used wheat instead of flour. And wheat just has a different taste to it. Kind of like cardboard. But we managed to disguise that cardboard flavor by heaping on lots of fruit topping and other things.

I have come to the conclusion that it is better to eat pancakes and sausages and risk a heart attack and the ire of vegans everywhere, then compromise my principals and keel over with an empty stomach.

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