Oats, whole wheat flour, milk, eggs, banana, strawberry….. What do you think when you hear these? Well for me, all except one is a breakfast pantry staple. That one is all rounder for the day. Yes, you are right. I am talking about the flour.
The very first time I tried pancakes, it was around the same time last year. Recently married, struggling with thoughts on what to cook, new in U.S., limited ingredients and utensils in my kitchen, you know how it is… Or may be not! Before that I have eaten and cooked (my mother cooked and I watched or helped) the Indian version of this dish which doesn’t involve eggs with some other variations. So back to talking about the first time, it was a typical an all purpose flour pancake. Gradually I added whole wheat flour to it and it made me less guilty for me. I made it our weekend brunch item. I soon made that with 100% whole wheat flour and added good stuff to it. The key is to make sure the consistency is right even after keeping it for 10 minutes. Now this made it to our weekday breakfast as well whenever my husband was bored of our usual and I couldn’t think of anything else.
Today I took another leap today by adding oats. I was out of oats for a while and got good deals on Quaker oats yesterday.. So got a couple of big boxes! I felt bad about switching to regular oat bowl so resorted to this variation!
Now here’s what I have for all those just picking up cooking or are afraid of trying out new stuff. What I have in this is based on my taste palette and please never try to replicate the recipe to a T without thinking about your taste. Also, since the raw ingredients could differ by the brand you want to make sure that the end result doesn’t change. The simplest thing to do is try know what these ingredients are doing and find reasonable substitutes/ quantities/ tricks…whatever doesn’t kill the fun of trying.
Let me not bore you with details (tell me if you want more details 🙂 ).
Ingredients for 5-6 pancakes:
- Oats : 3/4th cup (quick or old fashioned)* check notes.
- Whole wheat flour *notes : 1.5 cups
- Baking soda : 1 tsp
- Baking Powder: 1.5 tsp
- Milk (fat free or 2%): 1.5 cups
- Vinegar: 1.5 tbsp (replace this and milk with equivalent amount of buttermilk
- Egg: 1 jumbo/ large or 2 regular – lightly beaten
- Half a banana/ 1 tbsp Vegetable oil/ 1 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp Brown sugar/ Honey/ Regular Sugar (1 tbsp)
- Salt: 1/2 tsp
- Cardamom powder: 1 tsp* (optional)
- Nutmeg: a pinch* (optional)
- A bowl of water (for sprinkling in between pancakes)
- If you are using Milk, then add vinegar to milk and rest it for 10 minutes. If you are using old fashioned oats, add enough water to cover it, microwave on high for 40 seconds to 1 minute. Check notes for details.
- Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl and wet ingredients in another. Mix the two and blend using a blender.
- Let the mixture rest for 5-10 minutes and heat up your non stick pan on medium heat.
- I usually butter it up for the first one if the pan’s too dry (freshly washed) but not for the subsequent ones. The oiliness from previous mixture serves up well because of Milk and banana in the mixture (or any substitute mentioned). To check if the pan is heated enough, check for sizzling sound when you drop a little water on heated pan.
- Once heated, pour 1/4 cup of the batter and spread it a little into whatever shape you please. I use a deep ladle to do this.Cover the pan for around 20 -30 seconds. You know it’s time to flip when you have bubbles on top. When you will try to flip it, the pancake will leave the pan with very little resistance. If it starts breaking, it needs a few more seconds.
- Once flipped, do the other side until browned slightly – around 30 seconds and take it off.
- Sprinkle water on the pan and wipe it using paper towel.*
- Repeat 5-7 for rest of the batter. You can save the batter for next couple of days in fridge.
- To serve, sprinkle white sugar or fresh fruits on the pancakes with some greek yogurt on the side. Or you can serve it with heated maple syrup & whipped cream – destroys the healthiness part though! Enjoy your wholesome breakfast.
- If you are using old fashioned one, put oats with just enough water to cover it in a bowl while you prep for the rest. You can also microwave it on high for 40 seconds to make it softer. If you like the chunkiness of oats in general, don’t bother microwaving.
- The quality is brand dependent. There are few which mill it thinner thus is a blend between AP flour and whole wheat. The thicker the flour the more water will it absorb. So if you think it is drier than a pancake batter, just add more water/milk/buttermilk etc.
- If you use all liquid ingredients – like honey & oil, then you might want to reduce liquid overall with a little less milk
- You can also use spice blends like Thandai masala (available in indian stores) I use this for many of my sweet or non savory preparations. You can prepare your own if you have a spice grinder.
- Sprinkling water helps the heat spread better and replaces the need to butter the pan. This trick only works on seasoned cast iron or heavy non stick. The same can be done for Dosa, crepes and similar pan cooked items.
- You can easily substitute milk with almond/ soy milk. Omit Vinegar in that case.