February 18, 2015

Banana-Java Pancakes and Peach-Sour Cream Pancakes

I am not a big pancake person. They always seem like a good idea, but by the time they get to the table they are generally thin and uninspiring. These two pancake recipes are my two favorites I've ever had at home and are the opposite. They are both so thick yet light, rich yet I can eat a lot of them. And both full of fruit. The first is peach-sour cream pancakes from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. We made these a lot when we were rich in juicy fresh peaches last summer. They were the second recipe I ever tried from that book (the first being this phenomenal galette) and I was completely hooked. 

I initially thought it was the sour cream in the Smitten ones that made them so good and different from other pancakes (a lot of sour cream I might add, as the Smitten Kitchen has a thing for creams, butter, etc). I definitely think that helps. But the other pancakes I like a lot-- banana-java-- come from the out-of-print The Best of Pancake and Waffle Recipes via my father-in-law and those have no sour cream in them, they do have in common a fair amount of baking powder/soda. Or maybe the mashed banana gives them the same oomph that the sour cream does in the other ones. Either way, I happily alternate between these two pancake recipes. We were craving the peach ones around Christmas time, and we found they were also yummy, while maybe not quite as pleasing to the eye, scattered with blueberries from the freezer instead of being adorned with peach slices.

Happily polishing off the extra sliced peaches

And a few pictures of the tasty banana-java ones:

Peach-Sour Cream Pancakes
from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook, Deb Perelman
(makes 8 4-in. pancakes-- just barely enough for the 3 of us)

1 egg
1 C sour cream
1/4 t vanilla
2 T sugar
1/4 t salt
1/4 t ground cinnamon
pinch of ground nutmeg
3/4 C flour
1 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
butter for pan
1 peach, halved, pitted, and thinly sliced (about 1/8-in.-thick slices)

Preheat oven to 250. Whisk egg, sour cream, vanilla, and sugar together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Fold dry ingredients into wet, mixing until just combined and still a little lumpy. 

Heat skillet or saute pan to medium-low. Melt a pat of butter in the pan and ladle in 1/4 cup batter at a time, leaving 2 inches between pancakes. Arrange 2 peach slices over the batter. Don't worry if they are bigger than the batter puddle, as the pancake will spread as it cooks. When the pancakes are dry around the edges and you can see bubbles forming on top-- about 3 - 4 minutes-- flip it in one quick movement. If any peaches try to slide out from underneath, nudge them back under. 

Cook for another 5 minutes, until pancakes are golden brown on the underside and peach slices are nicely caramelized. Transfer pancakes to a plate or tray in warm oven as they cook. Serve with syrup.

Banana-Java Pancakes 
from The Best of Pancake and Waffle Recipes, Beatrice Ojakangas
(makes 12 4-in. pancakes)

1/2 C water
1 t instant coffee or instant espresso powder
1/2 C mashed ripe banana
1 T oil
1 egg
1 C buttermilk pancake mix (I use instead: 1/4 t salt, 1 T sugar, 1 C flour, 2 t baking powder, and 1/4 t baking soda) 

In a large bowl, combine water, coffee, banana, oil, and egg. Add dry ingredients/pancake mix. Stir just until large lumps disappear. 

Preheat griddle. Grease lightly. Cook pancakes using 1/4 cup batter at a time for each until golden on each side. Keep warm in 250-degree oven while remaining ones cook. Serve with syrup.

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