Saturday, August 4, 2012

Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes

Sometimes, the seemingly simplest of foods can be the hardest ones to have a perfect recipe for.  You know the ones I’m talking about – oatmeal raisin cookies, Sunday morning waffles, chocolate brownies.  Part of the reason for this is that these commonly prepared foods have so many variations, and practically everyone you talk to will tell you that they have THE perfect recipe for it.  But often times, what it comes down to starting with a basic recipe followed by good old trial and error in your own kitchen, until you have that perfect recipe that can be handed down through the generations as The world’s best what-have-you.  One such food that I have tried countless recipes for -- some with good success, and some that were utter disasters -- is pancakes.  Over the years, I have figured out that while I like different variations such as buckwheat or cornmeal pancakes, the regular ones made with flour are the ones that I keep coming back to on lazy Sunday mornings.  I also know that any pancake that I am going to enjoy has to have buttermilk in it and be only very slightly sweetened.  Also, none of those flat,thin pancakes for me – I like them thick and fluffy.  And of course, they need to be easy to make and not require extensive steps like beating egg whites to a foam.  With all these criteria in mind, I am now finally armed with the perfect recipe for pancakes – this recipe can easily be scaled up or down; the batter stores well in the refrigerator through the weekend; and most importantly, this recipe lends itself to countless variations and I give you two of them, below.  Here’s my recipe for Buttermilk pancakes – I call them, quite simply, “The World’s Best Buttermilk Pancakes”.

Yield: 1 dozen thick pancakes

Dry ingredients
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2  tablespoons white sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
Wet ingredients
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 cups buttermilk, or substitute with 2C thick yogurt and 1C water, beaten together
  • 1/2 cup skim milk

Sift together dry ingredients
Beat together wet ingredients
Add wet ingredients to dry ones and stir lightly with a fork, until just combined.  The batter should have plenty of lumps.  Do not overmix.

Heat up a griddle to medium-hot.  It’s better to have too cold a griddle than too hot.
Lightly butter griddle, and pour ½ C batter onto griddle
Shake griddle lightly to spread batter, just a little
Allow pancake to cook until bubbles appear in batter.  If adding any other toppings, do so at this stage.
Flip and allow to cook till golden brown on both sides
If your pancakes are not cooked completely on the inside, let your griddle cool and try again. 

Serve hot with pure maple syrup on the side (as I prefer) or poured on top.


Banana Chocolate Chip Pancakes -- to make about 5 pancakes

           1 ripe banana, sliced into thin slices
           1/3 cup dark chocolate chips

Follow buttermilk pancake recipe and place banana slices and chocolate chips on pancake, while the top of the pancake is cooking

Try to bury the chocolate chips in the uncooked batter, and using a spoon, spread a little of the unset batter to partially cover the bananas

Flip and cook till golden brown on both sides


Nectarine walnut pancakes -- to make about 5 pancakes

           2 ripe nectarines or plums, sliced into thin slices
           1/3 cup chopped walnuts

Follow buttermilk pancake recipe and place nectarine slices and walnuts on pancake, while the top of the pancake is cooking

Press down walnuts and nectarines slightly so that they are partially buried in the uncooked batter

Flip and cook till golden brown on both sides


2 comments:

  1. I tried this recipe past weekend and everyone loved it! I added blueberries, strawberries, plums, bananas and chocolates. The banana-chocolate-blueberry was everyone's favorite! Thanks for sharing this, makes for a great Sunday brunch! --Soumya

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    1. Yumm...that sounds like a great combo.

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