I’ve never been a big breakfast eater. I just function differently (read: so not a morning person) and don’t get my act together until I’ve been awake for a few hours. I know breakfast is “the most important meal of the day” or so I hear. I get it. I just can’t do it. Eating first thing in the morning makes me a little nauseous.
And yet, I love breakfast foods – waffles, pancakes, corn beef hash, runny yolks with rye toast, crunchy hash browns. Breakfast meats are the best meats – bacon, sausage links and patties, ham steak. I can never decide and love love LOVE it when I find myself in one of those quirky old school diners that offers some sort of egg/potato combo with ALL THREE meats. Yeah! Perfect for the indecisive me. And is there anything better than the little pools of butter and syrup that collect in each divet of a hot crispy waffle? I ask you, is there?
Ever go to IHOP as a kid? I loved that place specifically for the 57 fruity syrups on the table (OK, probably only 6 but it seemed like a lot when I was little.) The Rooty Tooty Fresh ‘N Fruity was made for me – pancakes with strawberries and big blobs of whipped cream which I would then top with a healthy dose of every flavored syrup on the table – blackberry, bosenberry, blackberry, apricot, strawberry. Maple … why? It’s no wonder I was a hyperactive child. With a lot of cavities.
The other day, I had a craving for some tasty buttermilk pancakes but didn’t have the gumption to go out. Going out for brunch in this city – especially after 11am – can be such an ordeal. Long waits, obnoxiously trendy crowds, noise. Complicated pancake concoctions that should be on a dessert menu. Lemon Meringue Creme Brulee Pancakes with a side of Raspberry Coulis and Lemon Verbena Syrup? Really? It’s exhausting and exactly the opposite of how I wanted to start my day. So I decided to whip up my own little Rooty Tooty just the way I like it.
My tastes have changed since I was 7, but not by much. I still like a good fruity pancake, emphasis on the word “good.” Luckily, I had buttermilk in the fridge so I knew I was onto something. Buttermilk is a magical ingredient. Just ask my friend Caroline. Rich and tangy, it takes pancakes and waffles to a whole other level. In fact, I’m not entirely convinced that you can make a really good pancake without the stuff.
Soooo…. the “fruity” in my “rooty” were some beautiful fresh peaches and raspberries that needed to be used. Ummmmmm uuummmm yum. I whipped up some delightfully fluffy buttermilk pancake batter with a little ground ginger to accent the fruit. I considered tossing in some candied ginger but stopped on the side of caution. No sense creating exactly the type of overwrought concoction I bitch about on a regular basis (though it probably would have been delicious. Whatever.)
The pancakes griddled up golden brown and fluffy. These really were a sight to behold. I’ve outgrown the fake fruity syrups to a certain extent but topped with plenty of butter, real maple syrup and those peaches and raspberries, oh it was heavenly. And all from the comfort of my couch, in my PJ’s without the annoyances of the hipster doofuses. In less than 30 minutes! Bonus!
STRESS BAKING THERAPY FACTOR: MEDIUM (putting this together was quick and easy but the score got a boost due to the tremendous satisfaction of kicking back, watching crap TV and enjoying the morning with my pancakes.)
BUTTERMILK GINGER PANCAKES WITH FRESH PEACHES & RASPBERRIES
Makes about 10-12 pancakes
2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 ½ cups buttermilk
½ cup whole milk
2 large eggs
4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (2 ounces or ½ stick)
1 peach, thinly sliced
healthy handful of raspberries
lots of butter and real maple syrup for serving
- In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients – flour, sugar, salt, ginger, baking powder and soda.
- In a separate bowl, combine the buttermilk, milk, eggs and melted butter. Whisk to combine and break up the eggs.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry and whisk until just combined.
- Heat a large nonstick frying pan or griddle over medium high.
- Grease the pan with a little butter and ladle in about 2/3 cup of the batter.
- Cook 2-3 minutes until bubbles just form on the top surface.
- Carefully flip the pancake over and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.
- Continue with remaining batter; keep finished pancakes warm in a 200°F oven.
- To serve, place a fat pat of butter between each pancake. Top with sliced peaches and a few raspberries and drizzle with lots of maple syrup. Enjoy!