Saturday, October 11, 2008

Pancakes with Fruit Toppings

It's football season, and one of the things that I look forward to all year are the tailgates. One thing that I look forward to the most though is what I like to call "breakfast tailgates." There is just something about getting to the University in the morning, setting up, and eating breakfast with friends outside that is just so comforting. I think it reminds me of when I was younger and used to go camping. This was the first breakfast tailgate of the season for UCF football (Go Knights!) and I thought this was the perfect time to try out some vegan pancakes. This was my first time making pancake batter, so I did borrow a recipe from Vegan with a Vengeance by Isa Moskowitz as a base for my pancakes. Here is is:

Serving size: About 6 pancakes

1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons canola oil (plus oil for pan or griddle)
1/3 cup water
1 cup vanilla soy milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoons pure maple syrup

Wash blueberries and place in a bowl
Wash and cut strawberries and place in a bowl.
Place in refrigerator or over ice until ready to serve.

I find it easiest to mix the dry ingredients separate from the wet ingrediants and then mix them together. So, first mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Then in another bowl, mix together the canola oil, water, soy milk, vanilla, and maple syrup.

Then, pour the wet ingrediants into the dry and mix while you are pouring it until combined. Just continue to mix, but do not overmix. You still want some small lumps. If it is too mixed then the pancakes will turn out tough and rubbery.

Preheat skillet or griddle to medium heat. You can test the skillet by pouring a small amount of water on it, and if it the drops bounce, then it is ready. You don't want it too hot either. It shouldn't be smoking.

When ready, apply a thin layer of canola oil, and take a ladle or spoon and pour the batter out in a circular motion so that it's an even pancake. And, make sure to use the same amount of batter every time so they are around the same size. Cook the pancakes until browned at the bottom and bubbles start to form at the top. This should take about 4 minutes. Then, flip pancake and cook until browned on the other side until the pancake is barely firm to the touch.

When finished, choose your pancake and top with blueberries and strawberries.

Delights and Afterthoughts:

I honestly had no idea what to expect from these pancakes since this was my first time making them. I made the batter the night before and cooked one just to make sure I didn't totally screw up! I was very happy at how they turned out, so I went ahead and chilled the batter overnight and felt confident that everyone would be happy with them that showed up to the breakfast tailgate.

When my friend John was finished cooking them on the griddle, I went ahead and set out the fruit and everyone that showed up early grabbed a plate, some pancakes, and some fruit toppings. They turned out to be hit, so I can't wait to make some other variations.

Some variations that I think would be tasty are:
**Chop the strawberries up pretty small and cook them in the pancakes.
**Fold the fresh blueberries in while cooking to make blueberry pancakes.
**It might also be nice to add some almond extract
**For special occasions, like valentines day, fold in some chocolate chips or substitute chocolate soymilk instead of vanilla soymilk.

There are just so many options!

Let me know if you try these out and how you made them!

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