Ah, pancakes, the perfect breakfast item… sweet, fluffy, and delicious when smothered in berry sauce or maple syrup (or both!). Serve with hash browns or some rustic cut potatoes, a couple eggs, and bacon, and I know my day will be a good one!
In anime, pancakes appear sporadically, often when I least expect it. Just like in the other parts of the world, sweet pancakes don’t seem to be an everyday staple breakfast item in Japan, with most anime depicting breakfast as either a traditional rice, soup, and fish meal, or something more modern, such as a thick piece of toast smothered in jam or a fried egg with toast and a salad. Or, as in Uchuu Kyoudai, episode 16, a perfect breakfast for prospective astronauts during a test! I love how in that episode, pancakes with a hardboiled egg, beans, and potatoes is considered “small” to Serika!
Pancakes make an appearance in Eureka 7: AO, with Chloe eating a giant stack of them smothered in pretty much every topping available, as well as in Shirokuma Cafe, Last Exile: Ginyoku no Fam, and A-Channel, just to name a few series!
About the recipe:
Pancakes make a wonderful brunch for a lazy weekend morning, or even as a decadent weeknight dinner (don’t worry, I won’t tell your mother)…. This is another recipe that is easy and fun to make, and you probably have all the ingredients on hand!
Pair with eggs any way, bacon, hash browns or rustic herb potatoes, toast, fruit salad, yogurt… and the list goes on…
About the ingredients:
The pancake recipe today is one which uses a rising agent in the form of baking powder. Baking powder is used to create tiny pockets of air inside your pancakes, which help to make this dish fluffy and soft.
This recipe can be made with milk or buttermilk. Buttermilk will lend a richer and slightly tangy taste to the pancakes because of it’s higher fat content and sour taste. When making pancakes, it is important to have the milk slightly warmed so that the melted butter does not solidify once it makes contact with the milk. When heating the milk, make sure to make it too hot, because you do not want to end up cooking the eggs before the pancakes enter the frying pan or griddle. A good test is to stick a finger into the milk: if the milk is neither hot nor cold, that means it’s just perfect, at about 35 degrees celsius, or close to body temperature.
The amount of milk you use will determine how thick these pancakes are. I recommend starting with the smaller amount of milk suggested and then adding more if the batter seems too thick. For this reason, a range of milk amounts is listed in the ingredients.
Also take care not to overbeat: a few lumps in the batter will do no harm. If you want even lighter, ﬂuﬃer pancakes, you can separate the egg and add the yolk in to the milk and butter like usual, and then beat the egg white until medium stiff peaks form, and gently fold it in last.
Makes about 16 pancakes.
- 1/2 – 3/4 cup milk or buttermilk
- 2 tbsp butter, melted
- 1 egg
- 1 cup white ﬂour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
Variations to mix into your batter:
(Add a combination of about 1 cup of any items below…)
- Your favorite fruit(s), cut small
- Chocolate chips
- Nuts, cut into small pieces
- Grated cheese (for a savoury pancake!)
(Some suggestions… be creative!)
- Maple syrup (the real stuff!)
- Berry sauce or jam
- Chocolate sauce
- Canned peaches (or other fruit)
- Honey or icing sugar
- Whipped cream or sour cream
1. Beat the milk, butter and egg lightly in a mixing bowl, being careful not to accidentally cook the egg when it makes contact with the melted butter and warm milk.
2. Mix the ﬂour, baking powder, sugar and salt and add them all at once to the ﬁrst mixture, stirring just enough to dampen the ﬂour. The mixture should be loose enough that it mostly slides easily off of a spoon, but still thick enough that the mixture does not run when a finger is drawn across the back of a spoon coated in the batter.
At this point, your basic batter is complete. If you wish to add anything into your pancakes, such as fruit or chocolate chips, now is the time to do so. Simply mix it into the batter.
3. Lightly butter or grease a griddle or a frying pan and set over moderate heat until a few drops of cold water sprinkled on the pan form rapidly moving globules. If you wish small pancakes, drop about 2 tablespoons of the batter onto the pan. For larger pancakes, pour about ¼ cup from a measuring cup.
4. Cook until the cakes are full of bubbles on the top and the undersides are lightly browned. Turn with a spatula and brown the other sides. Continue cooking until it is golden brown on both sides, and the pancake springs back to form when pressed gently in the center.
5. Place ﬁnished griddle cakes on a warm plate in a 200°F oven until you have enough to begin serving.
6. Smother with toppings. Eat. Enjoy. Eat more!
Source: Fannie Farmer Cookbook