Faith, Confidence & Pancakes: A Love Affair
That could be the title of a fantastic memoir, but the story really is just about my complicated love for pancakes. They speckle my past, from the Aunt Jemima childhood days, to the gloriously failed batter of early adulthood. The latter was a dense, grainy disaster that ended in a temper tantrum I am relieved no one witnessed. I had a fear of flipping mixed with impatience, which left me screaming to myself, “WHY CAN FRAT BOYS DO THIS, AND I CAN’T?!?”
But slowly, over time (and a long stint of eating pancakes as a single girl), I grew to believe in myself, in the right consistency of batter, in those early warning bubbles, and in the gusto of an aggressive spatula motion. I had at least begun to feel consistent, if not yet fully confident, in my pancake abilities. Then my editor at TABLE Magazine asked if I wanted to prepare pancakes on LIVE tv (a recap from this story), and my response was ……………….
The moment of truth!
It wasn’t the live television part that made me nervous. (I’ve done that before, and that part is quite fun!) It was the stress of flipping a pancake on live television, but you know what? I dove in, and I said yes, and when I start to look back at my past post on pancake stress and personal growth, maybe Faith, Confidence & Pancakes: A Love Affair is a good memoir title option after all.
So I agreed to make grainy pancakes on live tv, which meant jazzing up the set kitchen, and if you’re showcasing a story on “Big Batch Recipes,” a leaning tower o’ pancakes is in order just like it was for the original story.
And wouldn’t you know it, the burners in that tv station kitchen put off so little heat that my little pancake became a sloooooow cook little pancake, and instead, the host ate the top tier of the pancake tower.
But at this stage in my pancake journey, that is close enough for me. Maybe one day I’ll be flipping pancakes behind my back while spinning. With all the Whole Grain Pancake Mix I now have in my pantry, I surely have plenty of practice ahead of me.
The beauty of this big batch of pancake mix is it eliminates a few steps between lazy morning snoozing and syrup pools, the two key parts of a successful weekend morning. This pantry stockpile is also a great head start for brunch entertaining. Continue after the jump for the recipes, my Pittsburgh Today Live appearance and more ideas for entertaining with pancakes.
Keep on Flipping!
p.s: I changed my hair again!
Whole Grain Pancake Mix
Recipe adapted from Whole-Grain Mornings by Megan Gordon
About this Recipe: Skip the store-bought varieties, and make your own wholesome Whole Grain Pancake Mix. There’s a recipe below for creating the mix and for making a batch of buttermilk pancakes. Top with pure maple syrup, either your local variety or my new favorite Bourbon Barrel Aged Crown Maple Syrup.
Yield: Makes about 4 cups; 4 batches
2 cups organic whole wheat pastry flour (such as Bob’s Red Mill)
3/4 cup organic buckwheat flour
1/2 cup organic spelt flour
3/4 cup organic rolled oats
3 Tablespoons natural cane sugar
2 Tablespoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
In a large bowl, stir together all the ingredients. Scoop into a large resealable plastic bag or glass jar, and store for 6-8 weeks. Refrigerate for longer shelf life (3-4 months). Give the mix a good stir before using it to integrate any ingredients that may have settled.
Whole Grain Buttermilk Pancakes
Yield: Makes 9 or 10 pancakes.
Make Ahead: Get a head start on making pancakes for a crowd, and warm pancakes in a 200°F oven for up to 30 minutes without drying them out.
1 large egg (organic/free-range)
1/2 cup organic milk
1/2 cup organic buttermilk (or kefir)
1 Tablespoon butter (such as Kerrygold), melted and slightly cooled, plus more for greasing the pan & serving
1 cup Whole Grain Pancake Mix (see recipe above)
Honey or Maple Syrup for serving (recommended: Bourbon Barrel Aged Crown Maple Syrup)
In a small bowl, whisk together to egg, milk, buttermilk (or kefir), and butter.
Whisk the pancake mix into the milk mixture until smooth. Let the batter rest for 10 minutes to allow the dry ingredients to soak up some of the liquid. If the batter feels far too thick and difficult to easily whisk or stir, add 1 Tablespoon more milk or water to loosen it up.
Melt a nub of butter in a large skillet or griddle over medium heat (you want the melted butter to completely coat the pan). Scoop ¼ cup of batter into the pan. Repeat, depending on the size of your pan. Cook each pancake until the bottom is golden brown and the top begins to bubble, 2 to 3 minutes. Flip and cook the other side an additional 1 to 2 minutes.
Add more butter to the pan in between pancakes.
Serve warm, topped with butter, honey, or maple syrup, as desired.
Make ahead: You can make the batter and store it, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. Add 1 to 2 Tablespoons milk or water to loosen it after it sits overnight.