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Tyler Makes Pancakes! (Tyler and Tofu) Hardcover – April 24, 2012

4.3 out of 5 stars 56 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Tyler Florence is a chef and television star of several Food Network shows, including How to Boil Water, Food 911, Tyler's Ultimate, and The Great Food Truck Race. Before joining the Food Network, he served as executive chef at the award-winning restaurant Cafeteria in New York City. He now owns two restaurants—Wayfare Tavern in San Francisco and El Paseo in Mill Valley—and a retail kitchen shop: Tyler Florence West Coast Kitchen Essentials in Mill Valley. He lives in Mill Valley, California, with his wife, three kids, two puppies, four chickens, and a beehive.



Craig Frazier is the author and illustrator of several picture books, including the Stanley series, Hank Finds Inspiration, Lots of Dots, and Bee & Bird. He is also an internationally recognized designer whose work includes six postage stamps for the USPS, including the 2006 Love stamp and the 2010 and 2012 commemorative Scouting stamps. Craig is married, has two children, and lives and works in Mill Valley, California.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Series: Tyler and Tofu
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (April 24, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062047523
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062047526
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 0.2 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #942,024 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Editor of Lillian's Diaries VINE VOICE on January 3, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"Tyler Makes Pancakes" by Tyler Florence is rated for children 4 and up. I am not sure that the average four or five year old would find this book interesting even if they were really interested in cooking, as my grandchildren age 2-11 are. The opening 2 pages are picture pages without text which show a little boy (Tyler) and his dog (Tofu) sleeping with a dream cloud above each showing an outer space scene with flying pancakes and a planted flag with a bone on it. The little boy wakes up and decides he is hungry and must have pancakes so he jumps on his bike and takes off for the grocery store to buy the ingredients while his parents sleep. (My first thought was that the boy was not old enough to develop a grocery list, travel to a grocery store by himself and weren't there house rules as to what the boy could or could not do when his parents were sleeping and he is awake????)

Throughout the rest of the book the dog has "dream clouds" above his head that don't seem to add to the story, but rather distract. The question arises of what is a dog doing in the grocery store.

I like the concept of children learning where the food they are eating comes from. But in this story the answers to the boy's questions about where each of the items comes from sidetracks the original story. And the comments to or about the dog, as well as the illustrations when the boy asks about each food leads the reader to think when the grocer says "just imagine that we are out on the farm" that Tofu has actually gone to the farm and is chastised by Tyler for chasing the chicken - which is on a farm not in the grocery store where Tyler and Tofu are buying food.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
What I liked most about Tyler Makes Pancakes! is that is explains where the food you buy at the grocery store comes from. Of course, Tyler Florence presents the idealized version of happy animals on a farm, not the more realistic factory farm scenario.

Young Tyler dreams he is the captain of a pancake spaceship and wakes up hungry for pancakes. He sets off to the grocery store with his dog, Tofu, without leaving a note for his parents (which seems like a potentially bad idea). The neighborhood grocer explains that eggs comes from chickens, buttermilk comes from cows, flour comes from wheat, blueberries grow on bushes, and maple syrup comes from maple trees in Vermont. The grocer adds bacon (without explaining where it comes from) and a cantaloupe from his garden for a balanced breakfast.

Tyler brings all of the ingredients home and whips up a batch of pancake batter. Fortunately, his dad wakes up in time to do the actual cooking. The recipe for blueberry pancakes is included as well as a one page fact sheet on the ingredients (with fun facts such as the number of eggs a hen can lay daily, how much milk it takes to make a pint of buttermilk, and how high wheat can grow).

As far as I can tell, this is Tyler Florence's first children's book. The illustrations (by Craig Frazier) are fun and colorful.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This is a really great children's book that would make a wonderful gift for any kid that shows an interest in food and cooking. In it, a young boy named Tyler decides to make pancakes for his parents. He goes on a trip with his dog, Tofu (adorable name!), and learns where all of the ingredients in his recipe come from. For example he learns about how flour is processed, where blueberries come from, and how buttermilk is made. So aside from the cute story of a kid wanting to cook his parents breakfast, there's an unmistakable nod to whole/sustainable foods and farming. The book ends with Tyler's recipe for blueberry pancakes.

I dock the book one star because the illustrations aren't so inspiring, and it's a dull color palette. But aside from that, this is a very cute book that not only engages children in the kitchen, but also gets them to thinking about where their foods come from, and how they end up on their plates.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Tyler Florence is an excellent celebrity chef who set out to write a book about a boy who wants to make pancakes as a surprise for his family. But since he does not have the ingredients to make pancakes, he needs to take a stroll down to the local grocery store to buy what he needs. When he gets there, he is given a lesson about where all the ingredients come from by a kind grocery store employee named Mr. Jones. While Mr. Jones educates Tyler about the source of his requested ingredients, Tyler envisions all of the scenes about where eggs come from and how you get milk, with the help of his trusty dog Tofu. This part of the book is a bit confusing to younger children. The pictures do not convey that this is a dreamlike thought in Tyler's head, so my daughter did not know if they were actually visiting the farm or still in the grocery store. It did not make sense to see Tyler in a grocery store in one frame with his "imagination" scene on the opposite page with no hint that this was not part of the present time story.

While the information is interesting, it was not presented in an interesting manner, and this is not exactly what I expected when I ordered this book. Pancakes eventually get made, but by the time you read through the first 3/4 of the book, you forget that the end result was supposed to be making pancakes. My daughter is 6, and she lost interest pretty quickly about half way through the book. Maybe it is because we shop locally at farmer's markets so she knows food is not made in a grocery store, but I also think it is because when she saw the title, she expected to hear a story about making pancakes, not a search for the ingredients. The pictures themselves are nothing special, and quite basic. Tyler, for example, is a stick figure.
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