I hate pancakes. It is a common known detail about me, mostly because I talk about it frequently to anyone who will listen. I think they are a pointless food. Pointless, because they always leave me hungry an hour later and I don’t even think they taste all that good. I much prefer a savory breakfast – eggs, cereal, even a smoothie with protein powder gets my vote before pancakes.
So, it may surprise you that this is my new favorite dish…
Fluffy, fruity, oven-baked pancakes. The secret to this (still pointless, but at least delicious) breakfast food is to whip egg whites and fold them in to the batter, making the pancakes unbelievably light, like a souffle-cake. You have folded egg whites before, no? Well, I am not known for my baking abilities and had to research some folding techniques before getting it right. At first, I would just gently stir, but that did not result in the fluffiest of batters. This fancy-chef method is actually pretty easy and efficient.
You create a batter of milk, flour, eggs, and some spices. Then, you whip two egg whites until they form stiff peaks, like this:
Then, you take about 1/3 of the egg whites and gently stir into the batter. This is a gentle stir, not time for the folding yet – we are just introducing the egg whites to the batter at this point. Now, slide the rest of the egg whites into the center of the bowl of batter.
And start the folding! There are three steps to the fold:
1. Cut – place your plastic spatula directly into the center of the egg white/batter, all the way through to the bottom of the bowl.
2. Fold – run your spatula along the bottom of the bowl, slowly, and bring the batter up and back to the center.
With a gentle and slow flip of the wrist. 3. Turn – now turn the bowl a quarter turn. Repeat, repeat, repeat until all the whites are incorporated. Keep repeating… Until it looks like this: Next, you heat up a small 6 or 8 inch non-stick pan and add a half a tablespoon of butter. Gently pour the batter into the pan and check after 30 seconds or so for the edges to set. Then, add whatever cut up fruit you want!
Pop it in a 400 degree oven for 7-10 minutes. Check the pancake and with a toothpick comes out clean, the pancake is done. Repeat with additional servings.
Lastly, top with honey, syrup, or whip cream…
Have I changed my tune on pancakes for good? At least these pancakes don’t have a lot of sugar (only honey) and have extra eggs. After eating I think I made it two hours until I was hungry, which, come to think of it, is actually pretty standard for me!
Fluffy Summer Pancakes – makes 2 servings
1/2 cup warmed milk
1/2 cup flour
2 tbsp of honey
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp of baking powder
2 egg whites
toppings: whipped cream, maple syrup, and/or honey
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix together warmed milk, flour, honey, vanilla, salt, cinnamon, baking powder, and two eggs until well-blended and no longer lumpy. Whisk egg whites until they form peaks. Gently fold egg whites into the rest of the batter – starting by adding 1/3 of the whites and mix, then gently fold the rest. Heat a small 6 or 8 inch non-stick pan on the stove with a half tablespoon of butter. Pour in half the batter, saving the rest for the second serving (unless you have two pans that will work, then make both at the same time). After the pancake begins to set, add the fruit. Put pancake in oven for 7-10 minutes. Repeat with the remaining batter.