OK, I’ll just put it out there. I’ve had a hard month, the culmination of which, after three years of couples cooking, has me cooking for just one. There’s no hate, no anger, just a lot of sadness, and hopefully a friendship again in the future somewhere. Thank goodness I have amazing friends and family both here in Indianapolis and over the phone. I also have these sweet girls.
And Matt Nathanson, whose music has an uncanny ability to fit the lovey-dovey beginning of relationships and the heartbreaking end of them, too. And then there’s food. Saturday afternoon I stood over a mixing bowl, beating together butter and brown sugar for cookies, crying, and I literally muttered through those tears, “At least no matter how little sense everything else makes right now, butter and sugar will always make something delicious and magical.” It’s nice to know that I can combine ingredients in a certain way and know that they’ll be tasty. It is not nice to know that every time my cat visits the litter box, she’ll emerge stinking and desperately wanting to cuddle. These things are certainties.
OK, so enough about me and my wah wah wah life. THIS WEEK IS THANKSGIVING WEEK! I love this holiday. It’s the Pie Holiday. It’s the Food Holiday. It’s the Hang Out with Family and Just Eat and Be Happy Holiday. I’m sure you’re all planning menus, grocery shopping, and getting ready to start cooking up a storm. I’m going to try to document all the wonderful things my family and I cook and eat. I am not going to give you the few sweets recipes I have in my queue right now. Instead I give you: breakfast. Because you will need a good breakfast to prepare you for a day of cooking and family time.
Breakfast is my absolute favorite meal of the day. I love brunching with my lady friends. I love, love eggs with runny yolks that ooze in a buttery fashion all over toast and potatoes and greens. And I love fluffy, sweet pancakes and waffles. My dad makes the best waffles, but alas I have no waffle maker. My mom always made the best pancakes growing up, these quick and tasty ones from Betty Crocker I believe. I have sweet memories of standing on a chair by the counter, helping to mix ingredients for waffles or pancakes on weekend mornings.
So these pancakes are not the ones my mom made for us growing up. They’re full of oatmeal goodness that fills you up properly. I’ve been making them since the summer, when I topped them with strawberries, powdered sugar, and syrup, and I have no idea why it’s taken me so long to share them with you. Seriously, these are the best pancakes ever. I’ve been mixing cut up apples into them lately and smothering them in honey. Or mixing in some pumpkin puree.
So, OK, you should make these during your holiday weekend. In your robe. Lazily. With a cup of coffee.
I always half this recipe from the one that Deb posted, and even then, when making them for just one, I have batter left over because they’re damn filling. The batter keeps nicely in the refrigerator.
found at Smitten Kitchen
1/2 cup oat flour (you can make this by pulsing 1/2 cup rolled oats into a food processor or spice grinder until finely ground)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly (plus extra for the pan)
3/4 cups soy milk/milk
1/2 cup cooked oatmeal*
1/2 tablespoon unsulphured (not blackstrap) molasses or 1 tablespoon honey
1 large eggs
Whisk the dry ingredients (oat flour, flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt) together in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, whisk the butter, milk, cooked oatmeal, honey, and eggs together until combined.
With a spatula scraping the bottom of the bowl and folding over the top of the ingredients, gently fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Using a light hand is important for tender pancakes; the batter should be slightly thick with a holey surface.
Heat a skillet (I like to use my cast-iron pan) over medium heat until water sizzles when splashed onto the pan. Lower to medium-low. (I’ve learned that this is important the hard way, i.e. burnt pancakes. Low and slow is better here!) Rub the pan generously with butter or spray it with Pam.
Drop 1/4-cup mounds of batter onto the pan, 2 or 3 at a time. Once bubbles have begun to form on the top side of the pancake, flip the pancake. You have to be a bit patient here. But please do wait. Cook until the bottom is dark golden-brown, about 5 minutes total. Continue with the rest of the batter.
Serve the pancakes hot, straight from the skillet or keep them warm in a low oven.
* Make oatmeal: Bring 1 cup of water, 1/2 cup of rolled oats and a pinch of salt to a boil and simmer on low for 5 minutes. Let cool. You’ll have some extra oatmeal, which you can eat while you’re cooking.