Sunday, August 26, 2012

My Favorite Pancakes Ever

My four year old son Max had his first friend sleep-over a few weeks ago. Turns out his five-year-old friend Asher had been begging his mother to let him sleep over a friend's house, and I happily volunteered to host. But you know how this story usually ends, right?

With a midnight phone call to the parents asking them to come get their kid.

I was guilty of that many nights when I was a kid, so I'm especially understanding when it happens at my house.

But not Asher! He was a total big man about it. Went to bed when I asked, slept through the night, woke up at a reasonable hour. The perfect sleepover guest.

So when I woke up after a good night's sleep on Sunday morning, I was totally up for making homemade pancakes.

I had no whole grain boxed pancake mix in the house, so I quickly scoured the Internet for ideas. It turns out that homemade pancakes are so quick and easy to make from items that you probably already have right now in your pantry, fridge and freezer. These had a wonderful texture, the kids completely loved them, and I felt great about what was in them.

Wheat Bran and Flaxseed Pancakes

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2 1/4 cups white whole wheat flour or whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup wheat bran (aka unprocessed wheat bran)
1/2 cup flax meal (ground flax seed)
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
3 cups unsweetened alternative milk (like almond milk)
3 Tbsp maple or date syrup

Place flour, wheat bran, flax meal and baking soda into a large bowl and whisk to combine. In a medium sized bowl, pour alternative milk and maple syrup.

Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and stir with whisk until thoroughly combined.

Place a large nonstick skillet or griddle over a medium flame. Surface is ready for cooking when you drop a bit of water onto the surface and the water sputters. Lightly spray surface with cooking oil spray.
Pour 1/4 cup of pancake batter onto griddle. Repeat until griddle surface is full. Pancakes are ready to turn when there are many bubbles on the surface of the pancake. Flip pancakes and continue to cook for 2-3 more minutes or until pancakes are cooked through. Transfer to a large plate and repeat process until all of the batter is done.

Optional: add fresh blueberries or ripe banana slices after batter is poured on to hot griddle.
Serve with Chia Berry Cherry Sauce, maple syrup and/or fruit

Chia Berry Cherry Sauce

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1 bag of Trader Joe's frozen Berry Cherry Blend or 3 cups of fresh or frozen mixed berries and cherries
2 Tbsp maple syrup
2 Tbsp chia seeds

Place all ingredients into a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir. When mixture is boiling, turn heat to a simmer and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring frequently and smashing cherries and berries as you stir.
Serve over pancakes, with oatmeal or any way that you use jam.

These are so wonderful, I think I'm going to make some more right now. The leftovers will be a fantastic and very quick breakfast for the kids this first week of school, which starts tomorrow! Wish us luck. It's going to be an extremely hectic week with school starting and our big family reunion/party at our house next weekend.

Deep breath, Wendy, deep breath.

Now that you are on a whole foods plant based diet, do you regularly prepare pancakes? What are your tips and tricks? 

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