Photo: Jon Melendez

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You're Not Letting It Rest
We've heard it all when it comes to mixing the batter—Use a whisk! Use a spoon! Use a blender!—but Wilson swears by the whisk. The tool helps her break up any lumps of dry ingredients, and she really gets in there, whisking for a full two minutes and checking to make sure she hits the bottom and sides of the bowl (lumpy pancake batter equals lumpy pancakes). But then, and this is crucial, she stops. She sets the table. She gets out the maple syrup and butter. She heats up the griddle. Once a good 10 minutes have passed, Wilson pours the batter into the pan. The reason for this pause, she says, is to let the ingredients fully combine and thicken to the right consistency that's pourable but won't spread all over the pan—and makes pancakes that are perfectly pillow-like.

Get the recipe: Happy Birthday Pancakes