Yankee Magazine Discovers the Best Pancake in New England in Ashfield, MA!

Notes from Nan: Thank you Marian Gray, for making us famous!
By Nan Parati, HF Contributing Writer

Elmer's with Kelli Ann and Family1

Nan with guests Kelli Ann & Ben who traveled from Canada just to sample Marian's cakes! (Photo credit: Sienna Wildfield)

I forgot to tell you guys who don’t read Yankee Magazine that their editors chose Elmer’s for having the “Best Pancakes in New England.”  Now you would think that was great news—and it is, except now I got to worry every day that the pancakes are perfect, every single one.  I know that Jim and Son can certainly do that, but I still have to worry about it now because there will always be those out there trying to prove Yankee Magazine wrong.  You know how people are always trying to prove that Yankee Magazine doesn’t know what it’s talking about, but you know what?  Because I own a breakfast restaurant, I eat pancakes at every restaurant that I possibly can just to compare them to ours.  And you know what more?  I have not found a single pancake between here and Louisiana that can even sit in the same room as ours, and even less even be considered in the running.  You know why I can say that without embarrassment?  Because we got the recipe from Marian Gray of Gray’s Sugarhouse and so the praise all goes to her for the recipe and to Jim and Son for making them, and none at all to me because to this day, I don’t know nothin’ ‘bout makin’ no pancakes.  I just know how to eat them, which I gladly do.  So, thanks to the editors at Yankee Magazine for their choosing us as Best Pancakes in New England.
Now I want National Geographic to choose us as best pancakes in the whole world.
Food!
Our menus this week:
Thursday:
BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Coleslaw and Macaroni and Cheese
Or
Grilled Portabella Mushroom Sandwiches
Friday:
Prime Rib with Baked Potato and a seasonal vegetable
And Jim doesn’t have the vegetarian option in his head yet.
Look—all y’all who did not come in and eat Jim’s mashed potatoes with salt cod in them missed the best food you would have ever eaten in your life.  I’m just telling you.
Bread!
Anna Fessenden (who I have known since 1983 from our old days together in New Orleans) makes bread for us—exclusively for us.  I would like to call it ElmerBread, but she calls it AnnaBread.  Either way, it is Freakin’Good Bread and if you haven’t tried it yet, you are missing the best bread you ever ate in your whole life in any country.  (I can’t wait until Yankee Magazine tries it!)
AnnaBread is available at Elmer’s Store Thursday through Sunday every week:
Thursdays: Baguettes and Daily Bread only
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays: Baguettes, Daily Bread, Country White, Whole Wheat, Rosemary & Olive and randomly, Rye
First delivery is at 8 AM  (This bread is so fresh that she brings it in as she makes it, two or three batches a day!  It’s hot when it comes in!)
Bread can be reserved by calling Elmer’s at 628-4003
Mondays and Wednesdays we carry fresh El Jardin Bread.
The Farm Report
Editor’s Note:  Donna has a clipboard on the bulk shelf where people can write their grocery requests.  I noticed the other day how several people had written, “Thanks, Donna for getting . . . !” whatever it was they had asked for.  That made me happy.  Thanks, Donna, for caring so much!
LOCAL MEATS, GROCERIES, DAIRY AND PRODUCE:
MEATS
BEEF: GROUND, SHANKS, STEW, STEAKS, LIVER, ROASTS from Steady Lane Farm, Ashfield
PORK: HAM STEAK, PORK CHOPS, SWEET ITATIAN SAUSAGE, HOT ITALIAN SAUSAGE,from Manda Farm, Plainfield
GROCERIES
ELMER’S BREAD (AnnaBread) Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday: Baguettes, Daily Bread, Country White, Whole Wheat, and Rye with Rosemary and Olive
EL JARDIN BREAD Monday and Wednesday from Holyoke.
HONEY: WILDFLOWER, BEE POLLEN from Bear Meadow Apiary, Ashfield
MAPLE SYRUP: New Crop Half gallons, quarts, pints, ½ pints, 100ml from Gray’s Sugar House, Ashfield
MISO:  ADUZI BEAN, CHIC PEA, SWEET WHITE, GARLIC RED PEPPER, HEARTY BROWN RICE from South River Miso Company, Conway
PICKLES: DILL PICKLES, ASIAN CABBAGE, SAUERKRAUT from Real Pickles, Greenfield
SALAD DRESSINGS: HONEY BALSAMIC, BUTTERMILK RANCH, GINGER MISO, CILANTRO LIME, CHIPOTLE RANCH, POMEGRANATE CHIPOTLE from Appalachian Naturals, Goshen
SALSA from Appalachian Naturals, Goshen
DAIRY
CHEESE: PLAIN CHEVRE, CHIVE & GRALIC CHEVRE, DILL CHEVRE, ROASTED RED PEPPER CHEVRE from Sangha Farm, Ashfield
ICE CREAM: VANILLA, CHOCOLATE WITH RASPBERRY, MOOSE TRACKS from Bart’s Ice Cream, Greenfield
TRUFFLES: GOAT CHEESE DIPPED IN DARK CHOCOLATE from Sangha Farm, Ashfield
YOGURT: WHOLE MILK PLAIN, LOW FAT PLAIN, MAPLE, VANILLA, APRICOT ALMOND from Sidehill Farm, Ashfield
PRODUCE
HERBS: DRIED. Basil, Cayenne Peppers, Celery Leaf, Cilantro Leaf, Parsley, Sage, Thyme, Lemon Thyme from Sangha Farm, Ashfield
PARSNIPS from Manda Farm, Plainfield
POTATOES: FINGERLINGS from Manda Farm, Plainfield
RHUBARB from Springwater Farm, Ashfield
BLACK RIVER PRODUCE DELIVERED 5/14/09
Organic (WXF) Apples Braeburn
Organic (Mexico) Avocados
Organic & Fair Trade (Ecuador) Bananas
Organic (FL) Beets
Organic (CA) Broccoli
Organic (CA) Carrots
Organic (Mexico) Cucumbers
Organic (CA) Lettuce: Romaine Hearts
Organic (Mexico) Mangoes
Organic (CA) Mesclun
Organic (CA) Pears
Organic (CA) Spinach
Organic (CA) Yams
Conventional (CA) Lemons
Conventional (CA) Tomatoes: Clusters
BLACK RIVER PRODUCE IN STOCK
Organic (Hawaii) Ginger Root
Organic (CA) Garlic
Organic (Ca) Herbs: Parsley
Organic (CA) Onions: Red
Organic (CA) Onions: Yellow
Organic (CA) Potatoes: Yellow
Organic (CA) Potatoes
Organic (CA) Rutabaga
Organic (CA) Shallots
Please email me at elwell.donna@gmail.com if you have any special requests.
Donna
Now it’s coming up on summer, so get yourselves together for our first ever
Cowboy Festival!
Sunday, June 14th in the afternoon
At Elmer’s
With
The Sweetback Sisters
Click here: The Sweetback Sisters on MySpace Music – Free Streaming MP3s, Pictures & Music Downloads
And
Girl Howdy!
Click here: GiRL HOWDY on MySpace Music – Free Streaming MP3s, Pictures & Music Downloads
I don’t know all the details yet, but we got The Sweetback Sisters, Girl Howdy and Chef Jim will be cooking up all kinds of Southwestern food.  And you should dress up like Cowboys and Girls!
Stay tuned for ticket prices, times and other stuff—just don’t go out of town that day!  (It’s a Sunday, so if you go out of town, come back in time for it!)

Oh yes!

I forgot to tell you guys who don’t read Yankee Magazine that their editors chose Elmer’s for having the “Best Pancakes in New England.”  Now you would think that was great news—and it is, except now I got to worry every day that the pancakes are perfect, every single one.  I know that Jim and Son can certainly do that, but I still have to worry about it now because there will always be those out there trying to prove Yankee Magazine wrong.  You know how people are always trying to prove that Yankee Magazine doesn’t know what it’s talking about, but you know what?  Because I own a breakfast restaurant, I eat pancakes at every restaurant that I possibly can just to compare them to ours.  And you know what more?  I have not found a single pancake between here and Louisiana that can even sit in the same room as ours, and even less even be considered in the running.  You know why I can say that without embarrassment?  Because we got the recipe from Marian Gray of Gray’s Sugarhouse and so the praise all goes to her for the recipe and to Jim and Son for making them, and none at all to me because to this day, I don’t know nothin’ ‘bout makin’ no pancakes.  I just know how to eat them, which I gladly do.  So, thanks to the editors at Yankee Magazine for their choosing us as Best Pancakes in New England.

Now I want National Geographic to choose us as best pancakes in the whole world.

Food!

Our menus this week:

Thursday:

  • BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Coleslaw and Macaroni and Cheese
  • Or - Grilled Portabella Mushroom Sandwiches

Friday:

  • Prime Rib with Baked Potato and a seasonal vegetable
  • And Jim doesn’t have the vegetarian option in his head yet.

Look—all y’all who did not come in and eat Jim’s mashed potatoes with salt cod in them missed the best food you would have ever eaten in your life.  I’m just telling you.

Bread!

Anna Fessenden (who I have known since 1983 from our old days together in New Orleans) makes bread for us—exclusively for us.  I would like to call it ElmerBread, but she calls it AnnaBread.  Either way, it is Freakin’Good Bread and if you haven’t tried it yet, you are missing the best bread you ever ate in your whole life in any country.  (I can’t wait until Yankee Magazine tries it!)

Now it’s coming up on summer, so get yourselves together for our first ever:

Cowboy Festival!

  • Sunday, June 14th, 2009 in the afternoon
  • At Elmer’s in Ashfield, MA
  • with The Sweetback Sisters
  • and Girl Howdy!

I don’t know all the details yet, but we got The Sweetback Sisters, Girl Howdy and Chef Jim will be cooking up all kinds of Southwestern food.  And you should dress up like Cowboys and Girls!

Stay tuned for ticket prices, times and other stuff—just don’t go out of town that day!  (It’s a Sunday, so if you go out of town, come back in time for it!)


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Nan Parati - Elmer's StoreNan Parati

Nan is the proprietor of Elmer’s Store in Ashfield, MA. A New England transplant from the Deep South, Nan shares her southern wit, wisdom and charm every week in her column, “Notes from Nan.” Share dinner with her every Friday at Elmer’s. Menu’s are posted with her column. nanparati@aol.com

3 Comments

  1. Jean Storb said,

    February 17, 2010 at 4:56 pm

    My daughter is moving to the Ashfield area and we have been looking forward to a visit to Elmer’s store very soon!

  2. Sean Ballantine said,

    May 27, 2009 at 12:02 pm

    Just a note in case Nan reads these comments – I saw you moved to New England a while back, and have wondered how to get in touch. Could not find you on Facebook, but it certainly could not be easier to see what you have been up to.
    Give us a shout sometime! It sounds like, as always, you are loving life and managing to have a great time wherever you are.
    -Sean Ballantine-

  3. kelli ann said,

    May 20, 2009 at 8:17 am

    lovin’ it. (and not just because ben & i are around that table–) still dreaming of coming back for dinner at Elmer’s with the whole family, one day soon! Hello Sienna, Persephone, Nan — and we missed a real live brandade de morue? Dayum.


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