October 25

Pumpkin Pancakes

Who doesn’t love pancakes? I can’t think of a single person I’ve met who doesn’t like them. There are people who prefer not to use syrup, or not to load up on the butter, or are content to have them smothered and filled with everything under the sun. They’re filling, they can be wholesome and partly good for you (the whole carb thing throws it off; not to mention the fat and sugar if you’re loading up on the goodies), and they’re remarkably easy to make.

pumpkin beef stew, from my old blogspot blog

I’ll admit that I am not a pancake pro. I mean, I whip up a mean batch, but I cannot achieve pure beauty. That evenness in such a perfect color – the type you see at any place that serves pancakes. I have still not gotten to that level. But that’s okay, because not everything has to look beautiful to taste good. I learned that when I was first starting out with this whole cooking thing. When I first started experimenting with even just the basics of cooking (which I did sorely lack), I had a food blog dedicated to eating cheaply and more or less healthy. At that point, I hadn’t ballooned up to the size of three cows duct taped together, so I didn’t care if we had three cheesy, beefy meals back to back to back during the week. Because I wasn’t working, either, I needed to focus on food items that were inexpensive. Sometimes that meant Kirkland brand tortilla strips covered in boiled chicken, and some form of cheap cheese. A fairly cheap meal, in more ways that one. But getting back to that whole presentation does not reflect taste (as is demonstrated in the accompanying photo)… Just because something looks like a bowl of dog vomit, doesn’t mean it tastes like it. And so when I put together pancakes, while it has never looked like dog vomit, they’re not those golden brown fluffy disks of perfection. But they sure as hell taste wonderful.

So in the spirit of fall (but really – I keep pumpkin in my cupboard year round), I decided bacon and pancakes sounded awesome for dinner. I had been sitting on a pancake recipe I found somewhere, wanting to try out white whole wheat flour (yes, I’m new to it), but I managed to throw it out and lose the URL for it. The recipe itself was for just plain whole wheat pancakes. Having attempted to make pumpkin dog biscuits earlier in the day (and having failed, I might add), I wanted to make a comeback with pumpkin and got to work.

A dash of this, a pinch of that. Those aren’t appropriate measurements for me. More like, “shake the spice jar until you can’t see what’s below it anymore”. Thanks to that method, everything is so flavorful, and without being overwhelming. People who don’t know how to use spice, or just don’t, blow my mind. Especially when you go to a restaurant *cough**cough*the place across the street from us*cough* and they don’t season things properly. Yes, I can add salt or pepper at the table, but it’s not the same if I have to sprinkle it on top of my soup versus the soup stewing with it. When I find other people’s recipes, I often question the spices. 1/4 teaspoon of pepper for a gallon of liquid? NO THANKS. More like a Tablespoon. With that in mind, when making this recipe, know that the spices used are up there in flavor country.

 

Pumpkin Pancakes

Pumpkin Pancakes

Ingredients

2 cups white whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 Tablespoons baking powder
3 Tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
2 eggs
1 Tablespoon vanilla
1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 Tablespoon ground nutmeg
1 Tablespoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cloves

Optional Icing
excellent for drizzling over the top, in lieu of syrup

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ginger
heavy cream

Directions

1. In a medium bowl, mix flour, salt, baking powder, sugar, and spices together. In a separate small bowl, combine pumpkin, vanilla, and eggs. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix until combined.

2. In a skillet over medium heat, warm oil or butter. Dribble a small amount of batter in the skillet to check if it’s ready – an immediate sizzle means it’s ready. Don’t let your oil smoke! Pour in 1/2 – 3/4 cup of batter at a time, dependent on the desired size of the pancake. Let brown on one side, about 4-5 minutes (the batter on the top side of the pancake will still be sticky, but won’t run when you jostle it), and flip. The pancakes may require a little squishing with a spatula if you’re going for thick pancakes.

3. For the optional icing, mix together the spices and powdered sugar in a small bowl. Add enough heavy cream to bind. It can be as thin or as thick as you like. We used it as a thin drizzle over the finished product.

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