A nod to Pancakes
February 4, 2013
Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. Things have finally slowed down after the big holiday rush, and it was good to have a day with not much at all to do. There was housecleaning, of course, which I did and got done in good time (though I'll be darned if I'll ever get all the dust), and I made some bars and soup and spent a good part of the day just doing what I felt inclined to do, which ended in me making a double batch of buttermilk pancakes for the 3rd time since the New Year began.
I'd like to take a moment to give a nod to Pancakes. I love pancakes. I love how warm they are, and soft, and how you can put just about anything on them. Apples sautéed in butter and cinnamon, berries, whipped cream, cottage cheese, peaches, or just plain butter and syrup -- blueberry, boysenberry, maple or strawberry. You can wrap them around sausage, layer them with bacon, or surround them with side pork.
There have been Pancakes during significant times of my life -- childhood camping trips when Dad made blueberry pancakes on the griddle over a campfire; the strawberry-topped pancakes I shared with my Grandmother at the café; buckwheat pancakes on visits home after I moved away; the pancakes Mr. Sundberg and I shared at the grocery store diner when we were first married -- they were big as platters and layered with sliced apples and only .99 each. There were the large, fluffy pancakes I made for the kids after they spent long days out sledding, and the pancakes I make for them now -- rubbery buttermilk pancakes thin enough to pile up a dozen, with blueberry or real maple syrup.
Pancakes are good for breakfast, and better as breakfast-for-dinner, after a long, gray winter day of cold and wind, when everyone has chapped skin and rumbling bellies and a hankering for maple and sausage. A bonus is that you can make pancakes in shapes, and I do: hearts, flowers, letters, and smiley faces. Tuesday of this week is National Pancake Day. I plan to celebrate all week. I may not MAKE pancakes every day, but I am going to do some looking around for a few new recipes, try a syrup I haven't tried, and contemplate a topping I've not before used. And yes, I will make some, maybe one evening toward the end of the week. After an afternoon of shoveling snow, perhaps. Sure. Good to have something to look forward to.
Here's the recipe I love best. Buttermilk pancakes. Good with blueberries, and easy to double. Seems the batter is a little better after a day or two in the fridge. Good luck having any left over. These are good with some cheesy hash browns and sausage, and just as good on their own.
2 t sugar
2 cups buttermilk
2 T melted butter
2 t baking powder
½ t salt
2 cups flour
Separate eggs into two medium-sized bowls, whites in one, yolks in the other. Beat whites until stiff; set aside. Beat yolks. Add buttermilk and melted butter. Combine flour, sugar, salt and baking powder; add to buttermilk mixture. Blend well. Fold in whites.
And for those of you seeking further comfort, here's a Beer Cheese Soup recipe that will round off just about any winter meal.
Beer Cheese Soup
4 chicken bouillon cubes
3 cups water
1 can beer
1 sweet Vidalia (or any sweet onion), diced
2 ½ cups potatoes, raw and cubed
1 lb Velveeta cheese, cubed
2 cans cream of chicken soup
In a large saucepan, combine bouillon, water, beer, onion (I like to brown mine a bit first), and potatoes. Simmer 20 minutes, and then add cheese and soup. Simmer 30 minutes. Serve with popcorn on top.