Monday, October 4, 2010

Buttermilk Pancakes

This is what we had for dinner tonight - yes pancakes for dinner! It's school holidays here at the moment + a public holiday today + the kids have done a great job the past few days spring cleaning their rooms, so I thought it would be nice to break the usual routine and have a treat. And it was GOOOOD!!! Tonight we had them with raspberries, blueberries, icecream and a drizzle of maple syrup. Normally when we have them for breakfast we have them with berries, sliced banana and maple syrup or occasionally bacon and maple syrup - don't knock it till you've tried it lol!

We always have pancakes for breakfast on special occasions - birthdays, mother's day, Christmas, and any other day we deem to be special :) I've tried lots of different pancake recipes over the years. A few tips and tricks I've learned and worked out when making pancakes are:
  • use a non stick pan if possible and don't grease it at all - it's the best way to get a nice even golden colour. I used to grease the pan with a little butter, but I found it made the outside cook too fast and it would burn while the inside was still gooey
  • cook them over a gentle heat (med-low) so they have time to cook through without the outside burning
  • leave the batter to rest for 5-10mins after mixing before you start cooking - this helps to get nice light and fluffy pancakes as opposed to rubbery ones
  • lastly, whatever recipe you use, substitute ordinary milk with buttermilk.

My favourite pancake recipe for the past few months has been from Julie Goodwin's first cookbook. I don't know what makes them taste so good, but I suspect it has something to do with using buttermilk instead of ordinary milk. It makes them so light and fluffy - YUM! I don't know all the ins and outs of buttermilk. But a few things I do know... despite the name it is actually low fat. It used to be a by-product of making butter. I guess the closet thing it could be compared to is plain yoghurt, it's kind of like a cultured or "soured" kind of milk. I'm not quite sure of the science behind it, but it is fantastic in baking. I think it has something to do with acid reacting with alkali... well let's just say it make things all light & fluffy and supermoist, VERY scientific and technical lol! I use it all the time in baking now in place of milk - in cakes, muffins, pikelets, scones - it does amazing things for scones. Give it a try next time you're baking, you won't be disappointed!

**edited to add** I just found a link to Julie's buttermilk pancake recipe here. This is exactly the same one as I use and it's the best I've tried :) Enjoy!

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