Thursday, June 7, 2012

Pancakes of Lurve

A recipe:

3 cups flour. (I usually do a mix of whole wheat and white)
3 Tbsp sugar (I usually put in 1-2, because Maple Syrup!)
2 tsp double acting baking powder (orig recipe said 1.5, but that was hard to measure. It's not an exact science)
1 tsp salt
(an amount, not to exceed 3 Tbsp, of wheat germ if you are being super duper healthy or your guests aren't and need it)
(spices to try: cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom)

3 cups milk (or apple juice if you've run out of milk because Coffee!... use much less sugar if you use apple juice)
3 Tbsp butter (melted)
1-2 eggs (1 if you're low, one yolk 2 whites if you like it extra fluffy, 2 whole eggs if you're tired, 3 if you like really eggy pancakes or you're trying to kill someone with an egg allergy)
1 tsp vanilla

Mix dry ingredients while butter melts. This is a good job for a helper.

Once the butter is melted, mix it with the milk/juice/cider/liquid-that-is-not-eggs and warm it all to body temperature. (Stick your finger in it. If it feels pleasantly warm, good. If it hurts... let it cool.)

Add warm liquid to dry ingredients, then add beaten eggs and stir it gently and not very much. Lumps are ok, these aren't crepes. If the batter is too runny, add a Tbsp or 2 of white flour to thicken. If it gets too thick, then add some more milk/juice. No such thing as too much batter, adjust as you go if the first couple pancakes just don't turn out right.

Batter likes to have a rest before you start cooking it-- gives a chance for the double acting baking powder to do its thing. However, if you leave it overnight in the fridge (which Joy of Cooking says you can do for pancakes first thing in the morning) the batter will turn grey.

It's still edible, but... grey... So sometimes the kids get a bowl of cereal before I start making pancakes just so they don't whine while I'm cooking. Zombie pancakes. *shiver*

Skillet should be hot but not burning and should be sprayed with Pam or butter or something. There is enough butter in the batter that after the first pancake you don't need to re-grease, but an initial deposit of fat will improve your overall cooking experience.

Pancakes are ready to flip sometime after the first bubble pops and a crater is left behind, and before your smoke alarm goes off.

My mom used to say that the first pancake should be thrown away. I don't know if that's because she didn't grease the pan or it was a holdover from god-sacrifice times, but if your first pancake is a mess, don't panic. If your third pancake is a mess, try adjusting heat (warmer than medium but only just) liquid (milk!) dry (flour!) or expectations (human!)...

This recipe feeds 3 hungry people. If you need to feed more than that, add flour, bacon, sausages, croissants, yogurt, and other tasty things until everyone is full.

NOTE: If you want to add fruit, DO NOT add it to the batter. (And not just because some of your guests are picky eaters/ungrateful wretches, though they are and will make gagging noises at the thought of fruit in their pancakes) You never get them evenly distributed and they just burn and make holes in the pancake.

Pour (or scoop) out your batter onto your hot surface, and wait a few seconds for the bottom to cook. Then take a handful of fruit (or chocolate chips) and sprinkle them onto the top of the pancake. Proceed as normally. When you flip, yes they will make a mess and a hole-- but only on one side of the pancake.

...Or you could just serve fruit on the side...

Anyway, hope this was helpful. As I tweeted earlier, cigarettes and coffee work short term, but for a happy revolution you need pancakes.

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