Gimmick foods

I don’t know why, but gimmick foods seem awfully appealing to just about anybody, including me, that is until now. They usually offer a promise of some sort, be it low fat, high protein, “will help you lose weight”, the best of the best, etc. etc. That’s how they get you to buy them, by promising that *fill in the blank* is superior to the alternative (which by the way often times means you working a little bit harder in the kitchen) and that somehow it has special properties and so on. In most cases, if not always, they are packaged products. Now, you know where this post is going, I’m going to state (IMHO) that those gimmick foods are no good and that you can do better yourself. That doesn’t mean that all packaged foods are bad for you, even though it’s true that the best package there is is the nature’s package in the form of a peel 🙂

FlapJacked
The pancake mix that doesn’t deliver on the promise of taste and content 🙁

So, there is this FlapJacked Protein Pancake Mix that’s been making rounds in the social media for some time now and I’ve seen it in some of the supplement stores around town, so I picked it up one time to read the ingredients and I quickly put it away because I realized the promise of a pancake that’s high in protein was marred by the first ingredient being Whole Oat flour (nothing wrong with oat flour but it ain’t a protein mix if the first ingredient is a Carb). If you are going to call your pancake mix a PROTEIN pancake mix then the serving had better have more protein than other macronutrients. It isn’t so in this case, so right from the start I felt a bit slighted by the claim to say the least. So I put it away and forgot about it, only to pick it up again at a different store. I gave in, I had to try it to see for myself if it was worth all the hype I’ve been seeing lately.

Flapjacked flop

So, the first impression aside I dove in with a renewed positive attitude, after all I was pretty hungry (just came back from a leg workout) so I did not need any negativity. The mix is extremely easy to “assemble”, you just add water and whisk. But don’t go too fast or do it on an empty stomach, like I did, because you are bound to screw up your proportions. Let me explain. I always look at the nutritional value table on the back of the product, because I will use this information to calculate the recipe’s macronutrient content. And in this table they are telling you that 1/2 cup of mix has a value of 200 calories. So, with that in mind I added a cup of water to 1/2 cup of the mix. I will spare you the anticipation and tell you that the instructions called for 1 cup of mix to 1 cup of water. Why did I not follow it? I was hungry and rushing and figured that if 1 serving in the nutritional value table was 1/2 cup, then instructions would follow that logic. But no, they double the volume, which also means that the nutritional value also doubles, but you might not notice if you didn’t closely read the nutritional info. Unfortunately or fortunately, depends what’s more important to you, I did the opposite. So, I started my batch only to notice the pancakes were coming out awfully thin, nothing like the picture on the package. This prompted me to reread the instructions and then it hit me: “What! Why would they double the volume for the instructions!!??” This clearly felt a bit sneaky. Because now eating a whole batch of these babies will mean that you’ll eat well over 500 calories in one sitting (don’t forget the toppings you’ll be putting on these!). So before the whole batter was used I added some more mix to it, to see if the thickness would improve any. It didn’t by much. Even Randy, who doesn’t seem much of a pancake consumer noticed how thin they were and asked “Are there any thicker ones left?” As for flavour, the package says banana and hazelnut flavour. I could not discern either a banana or a hazelnut in these pancakes. Needless to say I will not be revisiting this product in other flavours. I will probably use up what’s left in the package one of these days when I need a carb-up day 😀  

So today was a glute day at the gym, which pretty much means I kicked my own behind and that always deserves a treat and yes I opted for some home made pancakes. They were divine, fluffy and lightly sweet. 

centre
4 fluffy beauties and only 164 calories for the pancakes!
Look at the thickness of these pancakes, will ya? May I just say that it was definitely noticed and commented on!

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Tigernut flour – my secret ingredient

My secret ingredient in this batch was 15g of tigernut flour. I found it at Winners, where else! I absolutely love their food isle, because (like in all other isles) I always find a treasure in there. I’ve been eyeing that package for a long long time. And this was pure luck that I was still able to get it, after weeks and weeks of considering it to buy it. I did not initially buy it, because it was $10 for this tiny 300g package and that seemed a bit steep. But like everything at Winners it was discounted once and then second time to $3 so I had no other option but to try it! BTW you can also buy it in bulk at the Bulk Barn. I’m not sure how much it is there, even though I’m pretty sure it’s more than $3 per 300g. The package boasts about health benefits and delicious taste. Tigernuts are not actually nuts – they are tubers that grow in the ground. They are rich in fiber (41%), phosphorous, potassium, Vitamin E and C and are a valuable source of protein, carbohydrates and iron. 

 
I hesitated for a bit before I decided on a name for these pancakes, I could very easily call them protein pancakes, but it would be so unoriginal so I opted for Light and Fluffy Coconut and Tigernut pancakes 😀

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