Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Pancakes. So Light and Fluffy.

There was a time when The Professor cooked me pancakes on the weekends. This was when we first moved in together. Before I kicked him out of the kitchen.

I jest. Kind of.

The Professor is a huge fan of Bisquick. A bowl, a spoon and a dirty skillet later, we'd be eating pancakes.

Then came the inevitable weekend that we ran out of mix. And he didn't realize it until Saturday morning. The sweet, sweet man was actually going to go to the grocery store so he could make me pancakes. See why I married him?

But then I opened my big mouth and said "But honey, watch THIS! You don't really need a box, I have everything in my baking supplies."

He hasn't cooked a pancake since. Talk about my ability to ruin a good thing.

I've always used Betty Crocker's Recipe. My mom used the one in her cookbook, then I used the one in her cookbook, and when I finally got my own Betty Crocker cookbook, that's the one I started using. I don't know if this recipe - like many others - has changed over the different Betty Crocker incarnations. But this is a great, simple recipe.

And if you want extra-fluffy ones, read the notes.

Betty Crocker's Pancakes (This is the 1996 edition)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder (I've never understood why they didn't say 1 Tbsp)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Margarine or shortening (butter works, too)
BC tells you to use a hand-mixer. I don't have one, and I'm not pulling out the stand mixer for pancakes, so I use a whisk.

Whisk the egg until fluffy. Add remaining ingredients, except margarine, and beat until smooth.

Heat a griddle or skillet over medium heat. Grease with margarine. To test griddle, sprinkle with a few drops of water. If bubbles jump around, heat is just right).

For each pancake, pour slightly less than 1/4 cup batter onto hot griddle. Cook until puffed and dry around the edges. Turn and cook other side until golden brown. (The first time I made pancakes, I was impatient and turned them too early. My mom gave me hint: Don't even think about flipping them until you see the big bubbles on top starting to pop. I still watch for the bubbles).

Makes nine 4-inch pancakes.

A whisk is better than a spoon or a fork for mixing. A whisk gets more air into the batter, which makes the pancakes lighter and fluffier.

This past weekend, I grabbed my self-rising flour accidentally, and didn't notice until after I had added the baking powder and salt (which would be cut out if you use self-rising). That was an awesome oops - these were the fluffiest pancakes I've ever made.

In my book, fluffy=good. Fluffier=better. Fluffiest=HEAVEN. The lighter and airier the pancake, the more butter and syrup they hold. And really, it's all about the butter.

Then The Professor told me he - get ready for this - actually prefers his pancakes not fluffy. He likes them flat. It's a good thing I love the man.

I've typed pancakes enough times now that the word just looks strange.


kittie said...

I'm with you on the fluffy thing!!

Flat pancakes? Your Professor sounds lovely... but strange ;)

Amy said...

BC is my BFF. Anytime I have a question I consult BC first.

gm said...

I've never understood it either, when recipes indicate 3-4 tsps instead of just 1 tbsp...weird.

Nice pancakes though!