Power Cakes with Bananas and Blueberries

Fresh Fruit and Protein Pancakes

Kids love pancakes. Grown-ups do, too. I’ve been loving making pancakes with Park City Kodiak Power Cakes Flapjack and Waffle Mix to sneak some protein into an otherwise decadent breakfast. This Buttermilk flavor is my favorite, and you can mix it with water, with water and eggs, or milk and eggs. Each version has a different amount of protein per serving. For this batch, I used water and eggs.

On this occasion, I made these flapjacks three different ways: one with no fruit (for the three year old), one with bananas (for the nine year old), and one with bananas and blueberries.

Plain Jane Pancakes

The youngest flapjack fan requested no fruit in her pancakes. I mixed up the batter with water and eggs, making the protein content rise to 17g per serving. The kiddos love a pyramid stack, so I made the cakes larger for the base and smaller as it rose. Pancake stack number one was a big success with a little girl.

Stack Two: Bananamania

The nine year old wanted bananas in her pancakes, but no blueberries. I added some more of the batter to the measuring cup and added some sliced bananas. Using the measuring cup helps to pour the batter into the pan with more control. These golden cakes did not last long.

Bloobanana Flapjacks

For my breakfast, I mixed in blueberries and bananas and then showered the stack with the remaining fruit. I can’t wait to do this again.

Chocolate Chip Baguette by Companion Bakeshop

Passionate about Bread

I’ve been upping my fitness game and one of the beautiful consequences of exercising more is earning the ability to eat more of what you want. I’ve been burning 1,500-2,000 calories a day finding myself more often in a caloric deficit than not. As a result, I have been indulging in one of my favorite foods: sourdough bread.

I also recently started an Instagram account devoted to food content (you can follow me HERE: https://www.instagram.com/jakereats/,) so I took the opportunity to fuel up and get some photos. I stopped by the Companion Bakeshop in Aptos and purchased their last Chocolate Chip Baguette.

Fitness and Food

Health is wealth baby, especially when you get to eat delicious bread like this Chocolate Chip Baguette from Companion Bakeshop. I photographed the bread at the bakeshop taking advantage of the nice soft light coming in through the large windows. Then, I indulged. The tang of the sourdough and the bittersweet chocolate are perfect companions, living up to bakery’s name.

After this, I went and did 21 laps at the Seacliff stairs before walking down the beach to shoot the waves at sunset. I can’t imagine a Chocolate Chip Baguette getting better than this one, so I’m going to have to give it a solid 9.6/ 10 rating. I highly recommend stopping by and picking one up, but you might want to go early as they regularly sell out of all their bread.

The Value of Landscape Photography Part One

Exploration and Creation

The process of searching for something that you want to photograph, of looking for landscapes you want to depict, can be a mysterious process. What makes you want to make a photograph? Searching for meaning in a landscape could seem a foreign or futile process if you are uninitiated and unexperienced, but the process of looking for subjects in the environment to photograph is exciting and inherently valuable.

One of the interesting things about landscape photography is that it is very accessible. Access is not the greater challenge. Cameras exist in great abundance, and there are lots of parks with forests, mountains, streams, beaches, and other interesting things to discover. What makes it difficult is the not knowing.

To want to make a landscape photograph, you have to become accustomed to the process of exploring. Exploration already implies a lack of knowledge. It means you are looking for something hitherto unconscious. It requires going out into the world with the goal of bringing back something different.

Studying the Landscape

Through searching for subject to photograph, an artist gradually grows to know a place intimately. Hiking becomes a form of reading when you enter into this mode of searching. Any landscape is constantly changing with the seasons, and even a small park is infinitely full of potential subject matter. This means that it is virtually impossible to fully know any landscape. By paying careful attention to it, however, you can become very familiar with a space.

Only through putting in the time can an artist know a space. It is a relationship that requires work and patience. Similar to studying English Literature, or the history of Chinese Painting, this is a process that could never be complete. There is always more to learn.

Caught in the Rain

Wet in Wilder

On the last day of the storms, the power was out so I couldn’t use my computer to write. Instead, I set out earlier than usual and started walking towards Wilder. The forecast suggested that the morning would be relatively dry, but it was not. As I set up to shoot the sunrise, some huge dark clouds started moving in and before I could get a half dozen shots it started raining.

I was determined to get a good photograph, however. If I was going to get wet and cold I wanted to make it worth it. This shot below turned out to be one of my favorite compositions from the past few weeks. For me, it was well worth the discomfort of being in a downpour miles away from shelter.

Cow Pies and Rain Clouds

The beach that you see from this vantage point is called Cow Pies because it is inaccessible from the park side and across the cove is a farm that has a lot of natural manure. It is a private farm and is also a no go. Even if you were able to get down to the beach, it is a sanctuary that is well guarded by Rangers. As a result, it is a beautiful spot with some amazing waves that is always empty. This makes it a very beautiful and special place.

No Cameras

I love photographers, but I do not like seeing cameras when I’m trying to make a photograph. If I do, I know that I am in the wrong spot. I feel that I should be somewhere different enough and off the normal path. This morning, there was zero chance that another photographer was out there, and that’s how I like it.