I didn’t have to work today, and for that, I say thank you, Man Day.
This public holiday may be accredited to Christ’s Ascension on the calendar, but every German knows that this holy day also corresponds with Man Day. Maybe the link is that Christ is a man… so they celebrate his manliness?
Celebrated by both young and old, today is the day where men get together and enjoy outdoor activities in the company of other men. Whether it’s biking, hiking, or canoeing, the outdoor adventure activities are made even more adventurous with the addition of lots of alcohol.
One year ago today, I was standing in the early morning sunlight on the train station platform waiting to catch a train to take me to the airport to take me home for a friend’s wedding. As I stood on the platform, I looked across the tracks to the other travelers and noticed large groups of men with their bicycles and adjoining baby wagons. Now, do not confuse Man Day with Father’s Day. These two events are very much separate (thankfully to the health and safety of all children.) No, the baby wagons were not used to transport the German men’s offspring, they were used to transport crates of beer.
Only in Germany.
Although I may not be of the male variety, I too reaped the benefits of Man Day- I got the day off !!
Here’s what I did with my mid-week holiday.
I slept in until 8:30 then drifted in and out of sleep until getting up at 9.
I read blogs all morning in the cozy comfort of a big blanket and my sofa.
My most important achievement of the day? I finally made a recipe I’ve been dying to try for weeks, Caitlin’s Pancake Truffles. I followed her recipe very closely but made a few changes due to the ingredient I had to work with. Below is my take on Caitlin’s scrumptious creation.
- 1/3 cup raw oatmeal
- 1/2 cup whole wheat pancake mix (recipe below)
- 1 egg white
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1/4 cup soy-rice milk
- 1 banana (cut into three pieces)
- 1 cup whole pecans, chopped
- Maple syrup to taste
- Preheat oven to 350° and grease a cookie sheet.
- Chop the pecans and set aside on a plate.
- Mix the oatmeal, pancake mix, egg white, vanilla, cinnamon, and milk in a large bowl. Section the batter into three even heaps.
- Coat one piece of banana in each batter heap. It gets really sticky and messy but is worth the effort.
- Roll the banana balls in the pecan pieces. Place on the prepared cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
- Top with maple syrup and enjoy!
Wow! Caitlin, you sure do know what you’re doing. These were so rich and filling that I was only able to eat half. Luckily I have the other half for breakfast tomorrow morning! The only thing I would change in the future is to only use pancake mix and eliminate the oatmeal, but that’s just because I already have oatmeal in my dry pancake mix.
I used the recipe from here to make my whole grain pancake mix.
Whole Grain Pancake Mix
- 4 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1 cup unbleached All-Purpose Flour
- 3 1/2 cups rolled oats
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 3 tablespoons baking powder
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 tablespoon baking soda
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- Grind the oats in a food processor until fine but not powdered.
- In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients. Slowly pour in the oil and incorporate until crumbly. (If you have a mixer with a paddle, use it.)
- Store in an airtight container for 2 weeks at room temperature or indefinitely in the fridge or freezer.
- To make pancakes , visit their website for their further instructions.
The dry ingredients.
I don’t have a mixer with a paddle so used a potato masher- pastry blender style.
Well blended and crumbly.
My day continued with more blog reading, some housework, finishing the frosting I started for Rachel’s birthday cup cakes, and a bunch of munching.
I munched on a chocolate cup cake with vanilla butter cream frosting.
The frosting was a bit too runny, but the flavor was spot on.
I also satisfied my need to munch by trying something I’ve wanted to try since buying my microwave about a month back. Here is my source of inspiration.
Healthy Microwave Potato Chips
- 1 medium potato (I used a yukon gold)
- toppings of choice
I tried 3 different toppings. There was a tie for first between the vegan Parmesan cheese and salt and vinegar.
- Chip 1- salt and chili powder
- Chip 2- vegan Parmesan cheese
- Chip 3- salt and vinegar (dipped the potato in apple cider vinegar before sprinkling with salt and microwaving)
- Thinly slice the potato using a v-slicer or the flat slice on a standing grater. Be sure that all sides are even thickness.
- Cover the tray of your microwave with parchment paper and place the potato slices without overlapping.
- Sprinkle with salt and or other spices as you crave.
- Microwave on high 3-4 minutes or until you begin to see brown spots. Turn the microwave off and let sit for one minute. Microwave for one more minute. Cool. Eat.
Even though I’d been munching all day long, by 5 I was hungry again. To feed my hunger and use up extra veggies in the fridge, I put together two oven veggie packets.
Each packet included 1/2 potato, 1/2 zucchini, 1 mushroom, 1/4 red pepper, 2 asparagus spears, 1 slice of onion, 1 cherry tomato, fresh parsley and basil, a bit of butter, salt and pepper.
I wrapped the veggies in a tightly sealed aluminum foil packet then baked for what was meant to be 15 minutes.
Unfortunately, between vacuuming and getting changed for the gym, my 15 minutes turned into almost 30 and I ended up with mushy veggies.
Horrible texture aside, the flavor wasn’t too bad. The potato and red peppers held up best against my over-cooking-abuse.
You had such potential.
Served alongside couscous cooked with salt, butter and Italian seasoning.
I was excited to go to the gym for Body Balance today, but once I got there, I realized that the class was cancelled due to Man Day. Unfortunately, I overlooked the fact that the gym was closing at 8 and didn’t get the memo until the lights started going off in the locker room as I was blow drying my hair. Oh well, I was still able to do half an hour on the bike and another half hour walking hills on the treadmill while finishing my current children’s adventure story.
Although I had today off, I must return to work tomorrow. It’s strange because all morning I felt like it was Saturday and now I feel like it’s Sunday night. I’ll be screwed up for a few days.
Now it’s time for bed. Sebastian is away this weekend to celebrate Man Day with his friends in Berlin, so it’s just me and the cats tonight. It’s still pretty cold here so I’ve already turned the pee-pad on to heat the bed. For those of you who would like an explanation: Sebastian thinks the heat-pad feels like someone wet the bed so we affectionately call this electric giver of heat the pee-pad.
Enjoy the rest of Man Day!