When you hear the word “pancakes” what do you think of?
Long, leisurely weekend breakfasts? I do. The funny thing is that as many times as I serve pancakes on a weekday, I STILL think of them as weekend food. There is just something about a stack of steaming pancakes with butter oozing across the tops and syrup dripping down the sides that makes it seem like the weekend no matter what day it is. Yum.
Buttermilk makes the fluffiest pancakes (and now that you know how to make your own buttermilk you’ll have a ready supply!). I like to add just a touch of sugar and vanilla to acquiesce to an over-zealous sweet tooth that seems to run in the family but you can leave it out if you like. Be sure to stir only until the dry ingredients are incorporated – the batter will be lumpy. Over stirring will develop the gluten and make the pancakes tough. For perfect pancakes you want to wait until the bubbles on the uncooked side just start to bubble and burst and the edges look dull. At that point it is time to flip.
Let your pan get really hot. When you drop a few drops of water on it they should slide across the surface, or “dance”. A cast iron skillet is my favorite for pancakes but use what you have. In my opinion, electric skillets do not get hot enough to make a proper pancake. Just sayin’.
Slide the spatula under the pancake carefully, loosening any part of it that is sticking. A thin, wide metal spatula is perfect for this. Pick the pancake up from underneath with the spatula and quickly flip the spatula over, letting the pancake drop gently on to the pan – raw side down. Cook until it is done. You can tell by pressing gently on the top with your index finger. The pancake with be firm and springy when it’s done – not gushy.
Melt the butter and heat the syrup before pouring on the pancakes.
I didn’t do very well getting great images on these – you will just have to take my word for it. I was in the midst of my vacation and just didn’t feel like taking the time to set up the “studio”. Trust me. This is a recipe you are going to love. I sprinkle the pecans on the uncooked side rather than mixing them in with the batter. I just prefer to do it that way and it allows me to make pecan pancakes for one, blueberry pancakes for another, etc.
© 2012 Marye Audet