Contributor, Melissa Goncalves is our newest food writer. She knows what she and her peers like to eat. She wants to equip you with some culinary knowledge and skills that can win over your lady’s affections. If you can execute any of these well – Heck, if you can at least serve a completed, edible version of these recipes, then your partner value rises exponentially beyond being the guy that can set-up her home wi-fi or critique the latest Homeland episode (She was watching it with you already! She doesn’t care! Go fix her something to eat if you want to impress her).
Here is the thing. Yes, it has been done before. Yes, its one million variations grace the menus of thousands of diners. Yes, most places hardly get them right. And yet, the allure of the pancake has not lost its luster. I think it has a lot to do with its ubiquitous role in our lives. Right? It’s the breakfast food that harkens back to the special mornings of our youth-when the cereal was shelved for the weekend and mom took out all the stops. It’s the food we crave at 4am when returning from an all out party fest in NYC. Let’s face it: when done right pancakes are perfect. Light and airy, they are golden, tawny disks that absorb the perfection that is maple syrup. Juxtapose this breakfast confection, if you will, with crispy, salty, bacon, and what a pair to woo your beau with and start new memories that you will one day look back upon with nostalgia.
The seltzer is essential as it is the ingredient that creates the fluff in these pancakes. A note on maple syrup. FIRST-it is imperative that you use REAL maple syrup. None of the artificial stuff, please. It is an abomination in the culinary world. Second, I would suggest using grade B, amber maple as offers more depth of flavor. Ok, third, bake some bacon in a 400 degree oven for 15-20 minutes. Line a baking dish with some foil, and crisp up some salty goodness. It’s the ideal accompaniment to blueberry- studded pancakes. Honest.
2 cups flour
1 1⁄4 tsp. sugar
1⁄2 tsp. fine salt
1 cup yogurt
2 tsp. baking soda
1⁄2 cup seltzer water or club soda
2 eggs, lightly beaten
6 tbsp. unsalted butter, plus more to taste
3 cups fresh blueberries
1. Place a sieve over a large bowl and sift together the flour, sugar, and salt. In a large bowl, stir together the yogurt and baking soda; let sit for 10 minutes. Add the yogurt mixture, seltzer, and eggs to the flour mixture and whisk until just combined. Let batter rest for 10 minutes.
2. Heat 1 tbsp. butter in a 12″ nonstick skillet over medium heat. Working in 6 batches, spoon 2 portions of batter (about 1⁄4 cup each) into skillet, gently spreading out each portion of batter with the bottom of a spoon or a measuring cup to make disks about 4 1⁄2″ in diameter. Cook pancakes until bubbles begin to form around edges, about 2 minutes. Top each pancake with 1⁄4 cup blueberries, press down on them gently with a spoon, flip each pancake with a spatula, and cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes more. (Alternatively, for “silver dollar” pancakes, spoon 1 heaping tbsp. of batter into the skillet for each pancake and top with 1 tbsp. blueberries.) Transfer pancakes to a paper towel–lined baking sheet and cover with a towel to keep warm. Wipe out skillet and repeat process with remaining butter, batter, and blueberries to make 12 pancakes in all. Dust with confectioners’ sugar and serve with butter and maple syrup.
Makes 12 pancakes.