Monday, July 11, 2011

Granola Pancakes, Cinnamon Butter and Bruleed Bananas

Pancakes are a marvelous breakfast food but personally, I like them more for dinner. Tonight I made a big stack of nutty granola to eat throughout the week and added some to my pancakes along with banana slices so not only would they be incredibly moist, but also have some nice texture.
I've discovered in my travels that pancakes can very easily walk the line between good and bad. The trick is to not over work the batter and to have a perfect consistency. Stirring the batter too much will overwork the gluten in the flour, resulting in a rubbery texture. Don't be afraid to leave lumps in the batter, they will cook out. If the batter is too thin, they will cook very flat, too thick and the pancake won't spread. If you run into these consistency problems, just add a touch of milk to thin it out, or a tablespoon of flour to thicken it up. It might sound complicated but as long as you don't over think it, they will come out perfect and moist every time.

A full stack of fluffy pancakes studded with bananas and a homemade granola tossed with almonds, pecans and maple syrup served with warm caramelized bananas and whipped cinnamon butter.

Granola Pancakes
makes 6 pancakes
3/4 cup hemp or almond milk
2 tbl white vinegar
1 cup cake flour*
2 tbl whole wheat flour
2 tbl organic cane sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp ener-g egg replacer
2 tbl water
2 tbl canola oil
1 banana, thinly sliced
1 cup granola
sliced strawberries for garnish
maple syrup to drizzle
canola spray

Combine the milk and vinegar and let sit for 5 minutes to curdle.
In a big bowl combine the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Use a small blender or whisk the egg replacer and water together until thick and creamy.
Combine the egg replacer mix with the curdled milk and add the oil.
Gently whisk the wet into the dry, there will be clumps but they will cook out. Fold in the banana slices and granola. Make sure not to over mix the batter!
Heat a griddle or saute pan and grease. Ladle 1/4-1/2 cup batter and cook until the edges start to bubble and both sides are golden brown.
Garnish with fresh strawberries, caramelized bananas and maple syrup.
* if you don't have cake flour make your own! 1 cup cake flour = 3/4 cup plus 2 tbl AP flour and 2 tbl cornstarch.

Bruleed Bananas
2 bananas, sliced in 1/4" rounds
2 tbl organic light brown sugar
1/8 tsp sea salt

Line a baking sheet with foil and grease with canola spray. If you don't have a mini torch, preheat the oven to broil.
Line the bananas in an even layer and sprinkle brown sugar on all of them. Torch until melted and golden brown. Alternatively you can place them under the broiler until they have caramelized but keep watch so they don't burn!

6 tbl maple syrup
6 tbl organic light brown sugar
3 tbl canola oil
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch sea salt
3 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cup oat bran

Preheat the oven to 300.
Combine the maple syrup, brown sugar, oil, cinnamon and salt in a small pot. Bring to a boil so the sugar dissolves and boil for 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
Combine the remaining ingredients in a large bowl and toss with the sugar mix. Toss thoroughly and spread out on a baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes, tossing every 15 so the granola toasts evenly.

Cinnamon Butter
3 tbl earth balance vegan butter, softened
1 tbl organic light brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch of sea salt

Whip all of the ingredients together and serve!

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