I think I want to marry these pancakes. Or at least, I wouldn't complain if they were waiting for me each and every morning, in all of their pillowy glory. I would be willing to make that commitment. Especially because they're extremely versatile. I've made them several ways, just as Mollie Katzen suggests in her Sunlight Café. First, try them just plain with only the addition of a bit of vanilla. This way, they're happy to soak up pools of real Vermont maple syrup, which you should seek out over the pretend, carmel-colored stuff.
Sunday, January 18, 2009
Otherwise, you might add sautéed veggies like a bit of red (or green, or orange!) bell pepper, fresh (or frozen) corn kernels, minced scallion and even jalapeño, depending on how you like to start your day. If it's summer where you live, you should consider adding fruit: blueberries, blackberries, raspberries... The possibilities are endless, which in my book, makes for a very happy and healthy long-term relationship.
Cornmeal Buttermilk Pancakes
1/2 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon sugar
1 cup buttermilk
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
In a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. Beat the eggs into the buttermilk and then beat in the vanilla.
Pour the buttermilk mixture, along with the melted butter, into the dry ingredients. Fold the mixture to combine with a rubber spatula so that all the dry ingredients are moistened. Do not overmix.
Heat a skillet over medium for a few minutes, then spray with nonstick cooking spray. Using a 1/4 cup measure with a handle, ladle the batter onto the skillet.
Cook the pancakes for around 3 minutes on the first side, 2 minutes on the second. They should be uniformly golden brown. You'll know when to flip when you start to see bubbles on the surface of the uncooked side. Serve with your preferred toppings.
* Be sure to use the fine ground cornmeal, not the coarser sort used for polenta
* For a savory version: omit the sugar, vanilla and melted butter. Sauté 1/4 cup bell pepper, 2 cups of corn kernals, 1/4 cup minced scallion and up to 1/4 cup minced jalapeño. Sauté in olive oil for 10 minutes, then add to the batter along with the buttermilk mixture.
* If you use frozen corn, defrost them before sautéing.
* Don't think for a moment that you have to reserve your maple syrup only for the plain pancakes. You'd be surprised how tasty it is slathered on hot and savory cakes as well!