My blog contains a large number of posts. A few are included in various other publications, or as attached stories and chronicles in my emails; many more are found on loose leaves, while some are written carelessly in margins and blank spaces of my notebooks. Of the last sort most are nonsense, now often unintelligible even when legible, or half-remembered fragments. Enjoy responsibly.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Brian’s Perfect Pancakes

1½ cups of a good, unbleached AP four (like King Authors)
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons of sugar
1¾ teaspoons of double-acting baking powder
1 large egg, room temperature
3 tablespoons of melted butter, cooled
¼ cup of buttermilk, room temperature
1 cup 2% milk, room temperature

Sift flour into a large glass bowl. Add salt, sugar and double-acting baking powder, whisk to combine and resift.

In a second bowl combine egg, butter, buttermilk and milk.

Pour the liquid mixture into the dry mixture. Quickly and gently combine using the largest spatula that you have. Smell your new mixture. Leave it uncovered at room temperature until the doughy pancake smell has doubled from its original smell, usually about five minutes.

Bring a skillet or large heavy pan, I prefer cast-iron, to a medium-high heat and melt enough butter for a generous coating. Turn oven to lowest temperature and place a cookie sheet with rack on the middle rack of the oven. Using a 1/3 measuring cup, scoop and pour the batter onto the hot pan. Flip, rotate and shuffle until the first batch has developed a light, even crust on all sides and then transfer to the rack in the oven. Because your pan is hot, the insides may not be fully cooked, this is okay as they will be finished in the oven for an evenly cooked pancake.

After finishing cooking each round of pancakes, add more butter and let it come to temperature before adding more batter. Spread the pancakes out evenly on the rack, making sure not to stack them if possible. Once you have cooked all of your pancakes, remove rack from the oven and leave let the pancakes rest for two minutes before transferring to plates. Add your favorite toppings, syrups or sugars and eat immediately.

• The sifting is important. Do not skip this step.
• Make sure that all liquid ingredients are at room temperature. This will make sure that are properly combined and the end mixture will develop evenly.
• If possible, slightly warm your plates in the oven. This will stop them from cooling the pancakes off the second that they are plated.
• Pour your syrup into a vessel with a large open top and heat in the microwave, occasionally stirring to make sure that it is evenly warmed.
• I prefer Grade B Maple Syrup. Grade B is a late season, medium amber syrup that has not been refined as much as the common Grade A syrup. It has a mapleier flavor without being as overwhelming as the dark amber varieties.
• For whole grain pancakes, substitute 1 cup of finely milled whole wheat flour and still use ½ cup of AP white. Increase to 1 cup of buttermilk and 1 cup of milk. Let sit for at least 7 minutes before cooking.
• Recipe can safely be doubled

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