I look forward to weekend mornings. Not because I can sleep in, but because it means one thing: breakfast.
I can fire up my stove to cook a couple of eggs, sit in peace like a proper civilized human and enjoy a hot coffee poured from my French press. This is in contrast to my typical routine of slurping coffee over the kitchen sink, yanking my toast from the toaster, and running out the door with lipstick probably on my forehead.
Pancakes are reserved for quiet mornings. Soft, fluffy rounds dripping with butter and syrup, pancakes are an essential part of the American weekend breakfast. Though, as delicious as they are, I can’t help but feel guilty eating them. A typical pancake is a mass of processed flour covered in some concoction of “maple syrup” poured from a shapely plastic bottle.
I’ve been on a mission for some time to make the classic American pancake a little less guilt laden. I’ve tried whole-wheat pancakes with some success, but I’ve never been truly satisfied. They’re always a bit too toothy or grainy and end up tasting like a wheat germ-laced health brick.
I of course am talking about pancakes from scratch. I refuse to make pancakes from a box. Boxed mixes sometimes contain hydrogenated oils which I avoid whenever possible. Once you make pancakes from scratch, you’ll wonder why you’ve been relying on that box for years. There is no secret hiding in there. A few simple ingredients and a lazy Sunday morning are all you need.
Whole Grain Honey Oat Blueberry Pancakes
½ cup whole-wheat flour
½ cup oat flour
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup plain, non-fat Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons honey
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
4 tablespoons milk
1 ½ cups blueberries
1. Whisk together the flours, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl and set aside. Rinse blueberries under cool water and dry.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the butter, eggs, yogurt, honey, vanilla and milk until smooth. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until combined. Gently fold in blueberries.
3. Heat a large-sized skillet over medium heat. Add about a teaspoon of butter to the pan. Spoon about a ¼ of batter per pancake into the pan, leaving space in between. Cook pancakes for 3 to 4 minutes or when bubbles appear on the surface. Flip, pat down with spatula, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes. These have some heft and may take a little longer to cook. That’s okay. Just continue to flip them over so they don’t burn. Cook remaining pancakes. Serve with honey and a dollop of yogurt.
This story is part of National Geographic’s special eight-month Future of Food series.