My grandson has given me a directive for his overnight visits: “You don’t ever have to ask what I want for breakfast, G. Lee. Just assume it will always be pancakes”). I love pancakes too but lacking his speedy metabolism, I don’t make them often. One weekend morning when he wasn’t visiting, I woke up with the strongest craving but alas and alack, no pancake mix in the pantry. That’s when I remembered a homemade recipe I had written and buried somewhere on my laptop ages ago. These pancakes are light, fluffy, and taste so much better than any pancakes I’ve ever made from a mix or ordered in a diner. Trust me, it’s worth the few extra minutes to make them from scratch. This recipe makes just enough for two — or a very hungry you.
2 tablespoons salted butter
3/4 cup flour
1 -1/2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup milk
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
medium (10-inch) skillet
medium (3-quart) mixing bowl
measuring cups and spoons
platter, with cover
1. Melt butter in skillet over low heat. Meanwhile, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in bowl. Shut off heat and transfer melted butter from skillet into a spare cup and set aside.
2. Add milk, egg, and vanilla to flour mixture. Stir just until blended. [Batter will be lumpy.] Allow batter to rest–about 5 minutes.
3. Heat oil in buttered skillet over medium heat. When oil is shimmering, pour in half a ladle of batter.
4. When edges are golden brown and bubbles form on surface of pancake, slide spatula fully underneath and flip pancake in one quick motion. Cook 2–3 minutes until bottom is golden brown.
5. Transfer pancake to platter, then cover to keep warm.
6. Pour another half-ladle of batter into skillet and repeat cooking process until no batter remains.
7. Serve with a pat of butter and syrup, jam, or fruit.
NOTES & TIPS
• Allowing the batter to rest after mixing gives the baking powder time to work its magic and creates a fluffier pancake.
• After allowing the batter to rest, stir. If batter is too thick, add a few drops of milk and stir again.
• In the right light, hot oil looks faintly iridescent; it “shimmers”. The surface also develops faint ripples. Don’t see it? Drop a tiny bit of batter into the skillet. If oil immediately froths up, it is hot enough to cook with.
• If you’re not sure the pancake bottom is brown enough, slip the spatula underneath and take a quick peek.