One of the things my wife and I have in common is we both like to cook. She has taken classes at a local cooking school and loves to cook dinner. I on the other hand am a breakfast guy. There isn’t anything better than a great Sunday breakfast in your “lounge pants”. Sunday and Monday are my normal days off, so we tend to both be home on Sunday mornings.
Part of living a little better every day for us means eating more natural and organic foods. Fruits, vegetables and meats are pretty easy to find, even way out where we are. What I haven’t found is a good recipe for whole wheat pancakes. There are dozens out there and all that I found include regular sifted bakers flour. If you eat whole grain breads this pretty much amounts to switching to Wonder Bread at breakfast.
I always have wondered what the old recipes tasted like in the 1700’s when all they has was stone ground grains to cook with. No fancy crushers, washers and blowers to remove the bran and the germ from the wheat. I grew up eating whole grain breads and back then all the waffles, pancakes and even muffins tasted overly light and sweet. The bran muffin at Mimi’s Cafe is pretty good. I decided to find an old recipe for pancakes and use all whole grains to make them.
After years of trial and error, I finally got a recipe that I think is worth sharing. Like the Oat and Nut pancakes at IHOP, this may take a little getting used to if you aren’t used to eating whole grains. I call them Settlers Pancakes since there are no processed or bleached grains and I figure it must be closer to the breads the first settlers had with watermill stone ground grains. The only modern ingredient is the baking powder. Honestly I don’t even know what it is or why it is in there. Every recipe I ever tried had it so I left it.
Another key element of this recipe is the syrup. There are two ways to prepare this and this is the version my wife prefers. The only real difference is the amount and placement of the blueberries.
My favorite way to eat these is to add 8 to 10 large blueberries per pancake. Just after pouring the mix on the griddle I drop them on the pancake to cook them in. For my nephew if the berries are small I can make a design. Larger berries just pop and make a blob of purple.
Another friend prefers when I add just a little bit of ground pecans. This formula is to crunchy for my tastes but he likes it.
To create the syrup, I have found that buying fresh blueberries in the clear plastic tubs with vent holes works the best. Frozen blueberries in the white bags have too many green berries and it kills the flavor.
After I rinse the blueberries twice I leave them in the refrigerator to dry out a little. Usually one or two days is fine. Then in the freezer they go until I need them. I have no idea how long thy last this way, but 5 and 6 months seems to be ok in our frost free unit.
So here is the recipe for 5 pancakes about ¼” thick and 5” across as you see in the picture. Since my wife is smaller this works out, she eats two I get three. Sometimes she’ll toss an over medium egg on top instead of syrup.
It may not b exactly what they ate, but I’ll never know.
¾ Cup Whole Grain Stone Ground Wheat Flour
½ Tsp Clabber Girl Baking Powder
1 Tsp Nutmeg
2 Tsp Cinnamon
Optional 1 tsp orange zest
1/3 Cup 1% Milk
1 Tbls Olive Oil
2 Medium Egg whites
Orange or Tangerine juice to achieve proper consistency.
2 TBsp Butter
3/4 Cup Blueberries
3/4 Cup Natural Maple Syrup.
This can all be done in 20 minutes or less on a gas cook top if you know your kitchen and where your utensils, bowls and prep stuff are
Time this morning, 15 minutes from stepping into the kitchen to eating. I will admit that I have this down pretty good so I don’t really measure any more I just know how much to use. This mornings time also included cooking two eggs for our dogs (yes they are very spoiled).
Here is my quick method:
Add dry ingredients and Honey to a medium mixing bowl.
Place butter in small non stick fry pay on low heat
Place frozen blueberries in large glass of water, remove any visible stems. Cover glass and shake with water in it. This prevents the blueberries from freezing together in a large blob.
Set Griddle or large fry pan to medium heat
Add Milk and Egg whites to Dry pancake ingredients and stir to mix thoroughly.
Drain water from blueberries and add Blueberries to small fry pan
Spray griddle with non-stick spray, I prefer Pam Olive Oil.
Add Orange or tangerine juice so that the pancake mix is more liquid than dough. What I use is a gravy ladle, and if I pick up a ladleful and pour it back into the mix it should not stand on top for more than about a second, it should flow in smoothly. If it flows in and doesn’t make a little bump at the top, then it may be to thin. Add flour sparingly if this is the case. The first pancake may have to be an experiment until you get your own feel here.
Let stand about a minute and stir blueberries. If syrup is starting to bubble heat is ok, if not add a little heat.
Using the ladle pour the mix onto the griddle. Pour until they reach about 4 or 4 and a half inches across.
My cook top griddle is a two burner so it fits five pancakes perfectly. When I use our Al Clad square one burner griddle I can only cook three in a triangle fashion. Four and they stick together.
Watch the pancakes and Gently stir the blueberries to keep them from getting burned or a hot spot. The blueberries should be popping open and turning the syrup a delicious purple color.
When the pancakes have bubbles that stay open on the top it is time to flip them. They should be a light to medium brown if the heat is set right. To high and they’ll be dark brown, too low and they’ll be very light brown.
Turn the blueberries to the lowest heat setting. Pour yourself a glass of your favorite juice, and the pancakes should be done. I poured half carrot half tangerine, so if you are pouring a single juice, pour slowly to let the pancakes finish.
When they are done, stack two or three pancakes pour on the syrup and enjoy.