This was one of those mornings when nothing but pancakes would do. We don’t eat pancakes all that often any more; we’ve regimented our exercise and eating habits and breakfast typically consists of eggs, sprouted wheat toast and some coffee or juice, if time permits. But on the weekends, especially this holiday weekend when there’s energy in the air anticipating family, pies and turkeys, we needed a little extra comfort.
But yikes! There was no pancake mix buried anywhere in my cupboards, so I had to do a little quick thinking (terribly difficult on a Sunday morning!) and make the mix from scratch. Pancake mix is actually fairly easy – just flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Alton Brown has a great recipe that gets major kudos.
I was going to make Alton’s easy recipe, but I had no fresh baking soda and thought better about grabbing a couple teaspoons from the old box in the fridge. Instead I stumbled upon a recipe for PB & J pancakes by Sunny Anderson. She may seem to be a fairly hum-drum Food Network Chef, but this recipe was too easy and potentially very rewarding – my husband loves peanut butter, maybe more than he loves me, seriously. And I figured a short stack of these pancakes might make him eternally grateful and convince him to be my sous chef during Thanksgiving preparation day (or, rather, days).
I had no blackberries so couldn’t make Sunny’s Blackberry Syrup, so I simply warmed up 1/2 cup of blackberry jam (freshly made by our favorite faux niece, Celie, from some gorgeous blackberries she picked in her Seattle neighborhood) and 1/4 cup of real maple syrup. It worked nicely! (That said, I’m including Sunny’s recipe for the real thing below.)
Peanut Butter Pancakes with Blackberry Syrup
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk, plus extra if needed to thin
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons oil
- Canola oil cooking spray (Sunny uses butter)
- Blackberry Syrup, recipe follows
Preheat a griddle. In a large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients. Slowly mix in egg, milk, peanut butter and oil until combined. Add a little extra milk if batter feels too thick. Let mixture sit five minutes. Spray griddle with canola oil cooking spray. Pour about 1/4 cup of batter per pancake on griddle to form 5-inch pancakes. The batter spreads as it cooks. Fill griddle without crowding pancakes – I managed to squeeze in three per batch. Flip when air pockets start to pop on the top and a quick peak on the underside reveals a golden pancake. Repeat with remaining batter. Serve pancakes with Blackberry Syrup.
- 2 pints blackberries
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 lemon, zested
In a saucepan over medium heat, combine all ingredients and bring to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Lower heat to a simmer and cook until liquid is reduced to a syrupy consistency, about 10 minutes. Use a wooden spoon to break up blackberries as they cook. Strain syrup to remove seeds and serve warm.
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