Buttermilk is one of those things you get in every Irish supermarket but I usually find it difficult to track down here – that’s to say, my local supermarket doesn’t have it. Odd, as approximately a tenth of their floor space is given over to Home Baking, bless whoever their buyer is. When I do find it, there are two recipes I want to make, and this is one of them: buttermilk pancakes.
I use Scott Jenson‘s recipe, though scaled back as below for two people – you’ll still be stuffed – and to use a single standard container of buttermilk.
40g melted butter
1.5 Teaspoons Vanilla
100g white flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
I think it’s probably the vanilla that lifts these, but leaving the batter for five minutes to allow the bicarbonate to react also makes a difference. You mix the wets, mix the drys, mix them together without overbeating, then cook a quarter cup at a time on a medium heat. Get your pan ready and prepare to sacrifice the first pancake – my mother always says it’s ‘one for the pan’.
When crater-like bubbles start to appear, it’s time to add your toppings and flip, particularly for fruit like blueberries, sliced bananas or chopped strawberries. We experimented with chocolate chunks (squares of 80% Green & Blacks, because that was all that was lurking in the cupboard, butchered with a mezza luna) but it was a little too sickly even for me. Adding a small amount of flour-dusted milk chocolate chips shortly after you first pour the batter and it’s lightly set would probably work, allowing the chips to sink into the middle of the pancake and not just make a sticky mess when you turn it.
Plain ones work brilliantly with thin crispy rashers of smoked bacon, and maple syrup. A bottle of Prosecco, and nothing to do for the rest of the day is also recommended. Best weekend breakfast ever.