Saturday, August 7, 2010

A Blueberry Morning

Morning! With our ongoing do-it-yourself "yard renovation" and our upcoming vacation looming overhead, there is much to be done today. What better way to start the morning than a batch of Blueberry Banana pancakes?

For those of you who dream of light-as-a-feather, fluffy pancakes, you'd better head to IHOP and forget breakfast at our house (unless, of course, you're coming on a carrot cake pancake morning, in which case you will get the light, airy texture you crave).

At any rate, pancakes at our house are more of the heavy and dense variety, peppered with chunks of fruit and nuts...sounds appetizing doesn't it? Oh, but it is!

Our basic pancake recipe, from which we build upon, comes from Nava Atlas' The Vegetarian Family Cookbook. As an originally vegan recipe, these pancakes are egg-less, which contributes to their dense nature. In addition, with all of the "extras" that I like to add in, these pancakes could easily top the quarter-pounder mark (hold the cheese, please).

The recipe I'll post below is our basic recipe, but feel free to go wild with your own creations and add-ins--try any kind of fresh or dried fruit, combinations of nuts and seeds, and the toppings are endless. Another variation I recommend:
  • For the fruit, use apples and add cinnamon, nutmeg, and pecans. Use all-natural peanut or almond butter as a topping.
A quick side note: Due to all of the fruit and the yogurt, the water content of these pancakes requires that they cook longer than you're used to with a traditional pancake. You be the judge. Also, If you use less fruit, you will have a lighter, more cake-like pancake (which might be your preference)

Blueberry-Banana Yogurt Pancakes
(Adapted from Nava Atlas' recipe)

  • 2 cups unbleached flour (you can sub in up to 3/4 cup whole wheat flour if desired)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
  • 1 1/2 cups non-fat vanilla yogurt
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • sprinkling of cinnamon and nutmeg
  • 1 small, very ripe banana, mashed
  • 1/2 to 1 cup of blueberries (or whatever amount you please!)
  • Optional: chopped, toasted nuts
  • Butter for greasing the griddle
  • Sauce Ingredients: 2 cups blueberries, 3 TBSP water, 3 TBSP brown sugar, 1 1/2 tsp. corn starch, and grated lemon peel

1) Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. Gently stir in yogurt, milk, vanilla, and seasonings until just combined. Gently fold in mashed banana, blueberries, and nuts (if using).

2) Heat a nonstick griddle (or skillet) on medium heat (350 degrees) and lightly coat with the butter. Using a 1/3 cup measuring cup, spoon the pancake batter onto the griddle. Cook until golden brown on the bottom (approximately 5 minutes) and flip. Cook until golden brown on the other side and cooked through in the middle.

3) For the sauce, combine blueberries and water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add sugar, cornstarch, and lemon peel. Stir constantly as blueberries heat and sauce thickens. Add additional ingredients to taste (some people like their sauce sweeter, and may want to add more sugar or real maple syrup. You can also add more or less blueberries, water, etc.). You can mush some of the blueberries if you prefer a more textured sauce!

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