Whole Grain Pancakes
Whole Grain Pancakes
I confess, I go a little overboard on Sunday mornings when it comes to making breakfast.
I don’t know why.
I get excited about trying something new, or going to greater lengths to make something that sounds really, really good and if it takes a little more time than normal, that’s OK. There’s a certain luxury about Sunday mornings.
This morning all I could think about was pancakes.
Let me begin by confessing that I make my own pancake flour. It’s not that hard. You do need the right equipment, which can be initially costly, but once you have it, you have it, and you can play to your heart’s content, and we’re talking way more than just grinding flour. Good equipment is worth a lot to a kitchen nerd!
So a very long time ago, I bought a Vita-Mix. You can do just about anything with a Vita-Mix, including grind flour. The ingredients of my flour varies according to what I have on hand. Today’s flour was made up of whole spelt, sunflower seeds, and whole millet.
But don’t worry, you don’t have to make your own flour. There are plenty of “already ground” options in health food stores. Rows and rows, actually. Keep opened packages in the frig.
I also went to the trouble of making my own breakfast sausage this morning!! See what I mean? I go a little overboard.
Starting with roast chicken and a minor hint of garlic that I had on hand, I added allspice and onion. One usually makes sausage with raw meat, but since I didn’t have that, I gave this other way (using cooked meat) a whirl.
The texture was a little odd, but the taste was great, and we both enjoyed having protein with the pancakes. I’ll be trying more ways of making my own sausages!
Anyway, in case you’re not in to grinding flour or experimenting with sausage recipes, I’ve included a reasonable Whole Grain Pancake recipe here. As we speak, you’re probably headed out the door to have someone make Sunday brunch for you and how smart of you, truly. I just have this ailment called “I like to cook.”
Without further ado —
Whole Grain Pancakes
2 c. whole wheat pastry flour (available at Health food stores, either packaged or in the bulk bins). You can substitute other flours or combinations. Some suggestions — half whole spelt flour and half brown rice flour, or barley/spelt, or millet/soy/spelt, or amaranth/spelt, or oat/spelt, or quinoa/spelt, or buckwheat/spelt. Spelt is a kind of grain that can sometimes be tolerated by those who aren’t able to eat wheat. In any case, it provides variety in your diet. Some say it’s good to mix up your grains, meaning not eat the same thing all the time.
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 eggs, beaten well
About 1-1/2 c. milk (can substitute almond, rice, soy, hemp, etc.) Note: You may need a little more or less liquid than 1-1/2 cups (you can use water, too) for making the perfect thick batter. The amount of liquid you need depends on whatever type of flour you are using, so put in a cup, and then keep adding to the dry ingredients until it’s just right.
DIRECTIONS: Mix wet ingredients together. Mix dry ingredients in a separate bowl. Pour together and mix JUST until dry ingredients are incorporated. Do not over mix. Small lumps in the batter are just fine.
Use a small measuring cup with a long handle to dip out the desired amount of batter for each pancake. Cook on a pre-heated griddle or thick-bottomed frying pan or non-stick skillet until one side bubbles through. Turn over and cook the other side. If the pan is the right temp, this cooking process will go pretty quickly. For regular skillets, you may need to add a little butter for browning/not sticking.
Keep completed pancakes on a platter in a warm oven (lowest setting) until you have enough to serve.
Also have your stack of serving plates in the oven so they are warm and ready.
To serve, take a a warm plate from the oven arrange a small stack on the plate. Top pancakes with pat of butter, fruit, nuts, or whatever your heart desires.
Use Grade B maple syrup. Forget the fake stuff — Mrs. Whoever’s pancake topping that passes for syrup. :–) Trust me, it’s not worth your while. Once you taste Grade B maple syrup, chances are you’ll never go back. Ask anyone from Vermont, the maple syrup state.
If you don’t find Grade B maple syrup in your local Trader Joe’s, or your health food store, you can get it online. Here’s one example of where to buy it. Prices and shipping vary a great deal, so look around.
Have an over-easy egg or scrambled eggs on the side for extra protein. Plain yogurt is also a good side.
You can freeze the extra pancakes by layering with plastic wrap (so they don’t stick together). Then put the whole stack or two in a freezer zip lock. You can enjoy one or two at a time during the week when you are hankering for a quick and delicious breakfast and don’t have time to make fresh pancakes. Thaw (overnight on the counter works fine) to room temperature. Reheat briefly in a toaster or in a non-stick pan (turn several times) just until warmed through. Easy peasy!