If there is one food I love more than any other, it’s pancakes. Homemade pancakes. Pancakes from the diner. Pancakes from a mix. Pancakes from McDonald’s. Pancakes from the freezer. It doesn’t matter, I love them all. There’s something about warm, fluffy, ‘cakes smeared with butter and dripping with warm maple syrup that just calms my soul.
There’s no such thing as a bad pancake.
There is, however, such a thing as pancakes that are better than other pancakes, and these are just those pancakes.
Say ‘pancakes’ again.
The basic recipe has been in my family for years. My grandmother and grandfather used to be caretakers for a private fishing club – doing the cleaning, cooking, and general maintenance; and when they moved on from the club, my gram brought it with her. My mom had the recipe, but didn’t make them all that often. She always preferred the denser, cakier box mix ‘cake to these, their lighter, fluffier, and incredibly moist brethren. If I wanted these ‘cakes I either had to wait for Christmas morning or for my Gram to make Breakfast for Dinner (best dinner!) and invite us over.
So, yeah. Just an FYI: This ain’t no Bisquick nonsense. If you like your pancakes dense and thick and brick-like, you might want to add a little more flour than the recipe calls for, or just skip this version all together. If you prefer pancakes that float on your tongue like angel wings, well then darling, you’re in the right place.
Because I can’t have a good ‘cake without some Ron Swanson-approved breakfast meat, I started with some loose pork sausage purchased at the local farmers’ market. I seasoned it up with some Montreal steak seasoning, onion and garlic powder, and of course some whole fennel seed, but you can season according to your own tastes. If you can find loose sausage at your local grocery store and are feeling adventurous, go for it. You can add anything in that you like — so much better than packaged sausage, in my humble opinion.
Heh. I said ‘package’. And ‘sausage’.
I usually prefer a plain ‘cake, but I had some extra blueberries on hand this day and decided to add them to the cakes right on the griddle. I’ve also gone the Jack Johnson route in the past and added some mashed up banana to the batter. I have plans for a pumpkin version later this fall as well, so keep an eye out for that.
I know I can’t wait.
Blueberry Buttermilk Pancakes and Pork Breakfast Sausage
1 cup all-pupose flour
2 cups buttermilk
2 eggs, separated
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt
For the pancakes: Mix flour, buttermilk, egg yolks, baking soda, vanilla, and salt together in a large bowl until well combined. (The recipe calls for dissolving the baking soda in a small amount of boiling water, and you can absolutely do it, but it’s totally unnecessary and has no impact on the final product whatsoever.) Whip egg whites in a separate bowl until stiff peaks form, and fold into flour/buttermilk mixture until just combined.
Heat a pan (or griddle) over medium heat and grease with butter or non-stick spray (Gram uses shortening). Pour the batter onto griddle by 1/4 cup measuring cup (mine were…a bit larger). Add a small handful of blueberries. When the edges of the pancake appear dry and bubbles appear in the batter (about 3-4 minutes), flip the pancake. Cook for another 3-4 minutes and remove from pan. Serve with butter (if desired) and syrup. Makes approximately 8-12 pancakes depending on size. Recipe can easily be halved or doubled (or tripled!).
1 lb loose pork sausage (not Italian sausage)
1 tsp Montreal Steak Seasoning
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2-1 tsp whole fennel seed
1/4 tsp red chili flake, if desired
For the sausage: Add seasonings to loose sausage and combine completely. Form into round 1/4 lb patties, making a dent in the center of the patty with your thumb to ensure even cooking and so the patty doesn’t “puff up” in the pan. Cook over medium to medium-high heat for approximately 6-7 minutes on either side and serve along side pancakes. While you’re at it, go ahead and dip that sausage in that syrup. No judgments here, babies. Do what feels right.