Saturday, April 16, 2011

Apple Spice Pancakes

(by request)

I mostly cook by the TLAR (That Looks About Right) method, so this is nothing like an actual recipe, and might take some experimentation. I know, because every time I go in the kitchen, it's an experiment.

Wake up late, with a whole Saturday morning ahead of you. Put on water for tea (a good strong Assam/Irish breakfast type, of course). While chopping up your apples (see below), preheat a griddle on medium low. Rub some butter on it--the more the better, in my experience. I'm sure there's a limit to how much butter is a good thing, but I haven't reached it yet.

Dry ingredients:
3 or 4 handfuls whole wheat flour
A teaspoon or so double acting baking powder
A little less baking soda
A good, hefty tablespoon or two of powdered buttermilk (or you can use real buttermilk in place of milk, below; or you can throw in a spoonful of plain yogurt or sour cream)
3 or 4 dashes of salt
A couple table spoons of brown sugar
You can add a handful of rolled oats for extra texture if you want.

Mix together all the above in a big bowl. Then add:

A hefty splash--maybe three or four tablespoons?--of vegetable oil or cooled, melted butter. Mix it in, using hands if necessary, until the whole thing is about the consistency of course corn meal or cooked steel-cut oats.

Crack in two eggs (preferably good free-range eggs with bright orange yolks so you at least get some vitamins with your cholesterol) and, oh, maybe half a cup of milk or so. Mix it all together. I like my batter a little on the thick side--if it runs across the bottom of the griddle, it's too thin.

Fry up until bubbles start to appear, then flip. Don't cook too long after flipping--just enough to brown the bottom. (if it comes apart when you try to flip it, your griddle isn't hot enough. If it burns before you flip it, it's too hot or you waited too long. But you probably figured that out by now)

Apple Topping

Dice two apples. I like good tart ones for this. Put them in a bowl. Add a couple tablespoons or so of honey (er on the side of more, and don't worry about mixing it in). Season with some mix of the following. The list is in approximate descending order of how much of each I use.
Finely grated ginger (preferably fresh, but powdered will do)
Allspice and/or cloves
Black pepper (you can use cayenne if you're feeling adventurous, or if your family is really sleepy)

Nuke apple mix in the microwave for 3 minutes. Stir. Nuke an additional 1 or two minutes.

By then, your cakes should be about done. Dump the apple mix over the pancakes (I like it piled high).


Then take your spouse/kids/dog/friends (real or imaginary) to the park and work off all that energy.

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