culinary review

How To Make Pancakes - A Tour

Last Modified: 03/25/09
First Published: 03/23/09
Views: 1501
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Views: 1501
corn meal pancakes
Yellow Corn Meal Pancakes

We are big fans of how easy and versatile pancakes can be. Breakfast is the traditional time for pancakes topped with butter and syrup but we have tried to expand the pancake menu to include dinner and appetizers as well. All you need is a small work bowl, a decent non-stick pan and a few minutes.

For two people we have come up with this basic recipe. This will make about 1 pancake for each person.

  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Now to this basic recipe we usually add a whole banana sliced up and about 1/2 cup walnuts.

Sometimes we even add 1/4 cup cocoa powder to make chocolate pancakes. Remember though if you add more dry ingredients like cocoa powder you may need to add a little more milk.


We have discovered that since we are using butter to fry the pancakes we generally do not want to add butter on top of them with syrup. So we have been using yogurt and syrup or sour cream and syrup. It actually tastes a lot better than butter.

Sometimes we have blueberries around, usually frozen from the summer before and want to add them to the batter. Most of the time when people add blueberries to the batter they just drop a few in to make it look like they are in there, but we cook them in a pot with the brown sugar and salt and then put it all in the batter. This makes the batter completely blue and every bit is full of blueberries. We use about 1/2 cup to 2/3 cup of blueberries when we do this, and you may choose to hold back some of the milk since the blueberries have a lot of water in them.


A few weeks ago we decided to try a little different approach and made coconut pancakes. We had some dried coconut and some coconut milk around so we left out the oats and replaced the whole milk with the coconut milk and added about 1/2 cup of dried sweetened coconut flakes.

The pancake batter was completely different with the coconut flakes in it. The batter was thick but the result was really good. Basically when we make these pancakes we try to intensify certain flavors. Sometimes it is easier than with others.

Vanilla and salt really brings out the flavor in bananas, and salt really brings out the flavor in blueberries. We thought vanilla would have brought out a lot of flavor in coconut, as well as having coconut milk in the batter, but next time I think a little rum might work better.

After working with the new pancake understanding we thought it might be interesting to try something a little different. We usually have yellow corn meal around, and we love to make corn bread, but it takes a good 20 minutes to make it.

coconut pancakes
coconut pancakes
So using the basic method we decided to make savory yellow corn meal pancakes. We left out the vanilla and the oats and added cheese. The batter is very simple and uses less ingredients than for syrup topped pancakes.
  • 1/4 cup yellow corn meal
  • 1/4 cup white flour
  • 2 ounces diced monterey jack cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Again this amount was for 2 people, 1 pancake each. We topped this with salsa, sour cream and 1/2 an avocado sliced.
If you are looking to introduce an interesting appetizer or a late night snack this is a good way to show off pancakes in a very different way.