F 1 D 0 -- 02 01 06 at 12 01


Thunder Bay is many things. One important
thing is that it has many from Finland.

Half a block to the east is Kangas.

That is primarily a Sauna house. Yes,
a place where singles and couple can go,
and for about 10.00 rent a room for ninety
minutes. The temperature is 80F, but is
adjustable so it is hotter if you prefer.
The sauna opens to a big luxury shower,
where you can recover from the sauna.
After that, you can proceed to the shared
hot tub, where you can cook or cool as
you like. The whole idea is to pamper
yourself here for about an hour.

Well, part of this place is a Coffee Shop.

It is all done up in blonde wood coloured
tables, and has a spacious counter too.
The specialty here is thin pancakes. An
order of three or four is 3.00 or 4.00,
and they're as fine as any good crepe I've

Remember Hoito's?

That is the place two blocks west of here.
They're specialty is pancakes as well.

I didn't think I'd be interested in 
them, really. They're just pancakes,

Well, they got under my skin.
I was interested in them.

I usually order them with Strawberry
Sauce.  They bring a bowl of used-to-
be frozen berries. I suppose it is 
sauce because it isn't jam, but would
better be called preserves.

I do not ladle these over my pancakes.
I savour each one from a teaspoon.

I cut the pancake in half, or thirds,
and roll it up. They're not sweet, if
you don't put sweet stuff onto it. They
provide butter, but I find them plenty
buttery as they are, from the griddle.
I roll it, and it has this appetizer
finger food quality.

Well, we've had a problem here.

We had four bananas turning black, and
I felt a need to deal with them.

No problem, sez me. I figure I'll make
a pancake stuff, using banana as the
liquid and the egg part of the batter.

Well, I did this. I even added an egg,
thinking it could use the extra binding

We made four crepes this way.

Crepe 1.

It would not turn, and on closer
inspection, it would not even set.

Crepe 2.

It looked good on the outside, but
the inside remained the same. Raw

Crepe 3.

I tried making this, cooking it extra
hoping to dry it out before attempting
to turn it.  This worked, but it had so
much fat on the pan, I was unhappy.

Crepe 4.

Less fat in pan. Wow. Did you know 
banana sticks to a nonstick frypan?
I figured maybe it needs to get the
middle cooked a bit, so I scrambled
it.  I've never seen something so
steadfast about not cooking under heat.
To be fair, it turned from yellow
to brown, and had many browned bits
in it.  But it was still very soft.

Ann rescued me.

She got a couple more ounces of flour,
another egg, and plenty of extra liquid
in the form of milk and water.

When we stirred this into the mix, 
our luck improved.  

We found a pastry brush in the drawer,
and used this to oil the pan.

The next four crepes were fine. We
used them to learn how to flip them.

Flip 1.

It broke. A lot. Except that we didn't
flip. We just used two spatulas, and one
assistant holding the frypan still.

Flip 2.

This one was a cheating flip. We used
spatulas for the turn that counted, but
then practiced on the poor unsuspecting
pancake, learning how to flip without a
spatula, but after it was all done.

Flip 3.

I predicted in advance that I had bad
aim, and that I'd end up catching the
edge of the wet pancake on the edge of
the pan. What can I say? That's how it

Flip 4.

I stepped back from the stove, and wasn't
afraid to use sufficient force to get it
a foot into the air. You know, before 
yesterday, I figured that this high flip
was all for show. I really did!  But now
I can tell you that the purpose is to
get it high enough to get in position and
be relaxed for a perfect catch. No rushing!
The high throw helps. It just happens to
look like showing off. Game playing with

I've been mapping this place out. Just in my
head, but that's enough work.  So I figured
out that Red River Road, which is a couple of
blocks from here, runs not just to the edge
of town, but all the way to Winnipeg.  

We took Junot Avenue, and found it went across
the entire city, really.  It is also on the
edge, but passes Confederation College and
the Art Gallery, passes the Country Club, and
becomes Golf Links Road, continues and becomes
Edwards, and runs all the way into West Fort, 
and ends at the train tracks, at the foot of
Mount McKay.  

Without the mapping, I do things by rabbit
run.  I've learned that Water Street and 
Memorial Avenue connect the towns, and I'd
find my way there before doing any movement.
Why?  Just so I don't get lost, I suppose.

Seeing the new way across town helped put
this place into the right perspective for
me.  I feel like I know my way around.

One goal was to find things I like having

I scored when I found a couple
of sources for cut oats.  It was hard 
since people don't call them steel cut
oats, but Scottish Oatmeal.  Actually,
on close inspection, it may not be steel
cut at all, but it is close.  It is like
cracked wheat. Cracked Oats.

I didn't count this as a score. I was
looking for big hunks of TVP. Textured
Vegetable Protein.  It doesn't sound like
fun, but it is.  You let the stuff drink
warm soup in, and poof!, you have non-meat
chunks ready for use in about 10 minutes.
This can be fried up and used just like

Of course, this is primarily of benefit to
those who don't do meat.

The health and bulk stores had TVP, but
not the big pieces. Just little ones.
Bits suitable for using with beans and
onions and red sauce. Chili sized bits.

That's all I know.