Monday, March 12, 2012

Chocolate Pancakes

Venezuelan Chocolate Pancakes - made March 9, 2012, recipe adapted from Adventures with Chocolate by Paul A. Young (book #199)

I got this book as a Christmas gift from a case you wondered why I'm adding a recently released cookbook to my baking challenge when I'm not supposed to be buying new cookbooks anymore.  She was smart enough to pick out a new book to increase the chances that I don't have it already.  Ha, that's thoughtful gift giving.  Notice how I'm rounding the corner to the 200 mark?  That's right, I'm almost done with this challenge.  I have a handful of cookbooks left to bake from and the end is in sight.  Until my next challenge, which I'm already thinking about.  But first things first.

The premise of this book is exactly what the title says: "adventures".  You won't find common ordinary ingredients or even typical recipes in this book.  One of the recipes I don't have in abundance, surprisingly, is for chocolate pancakes.  Not many even had chocolate waffles, which I discovered when I went searching.  So I had to try this chocolate pancake recipe.  The adventurous part of this recipe isn't the chocolate but the buckwheat flour.  I've never cooked or baked with buckwheat before so I wasn't sure what to expect.  It sounded healthier and I thought it would be a more nutrient-rich version of baking with whole wheat flour.  That may be the case but sad to say, buckwheat must be an acquired taste.  And after testing it out with this recipe, which called for buckwheat flour or spelt, I have no intention of acquiring that taste.  Erk.  The texture was fluffy but I couldn't get past the taste of the buckwheat.  As in, I literally couldn't eat more than 2 bites.  Yikes.  So I scrapped the rest of the batter.  I hate to waste food but I also don't believe in consuming calories that aren't worth it.

Yet, I was reluctant to abandon the recipe if my only objection was the buckwheat flavor.  What if I made it with whole wheat flour instead?  So that's what I did and the results were much more to my liking.  It's not an extremely chocolaty pancake but it was light and fluffy.  Don't overcook these as they do burn easily.  If you want to go into chocolate overload, melt some bittersweet chocolate and whisk into warm maple syrup with a pinch of sea salt then use as syrup.  That was part of the original recipe in the book but I opted to use plain syrup for these as I had them in the morning and even I couldn't face that much chocolate so early.

1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, melted, slightly warm
1 1/3 cups whole wheat flour
1 large egg
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons milk
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1.    Whisk dry ingredients together.
2.    Combine egg, milk and vanilla.  Pour over dry ingredients and whisk lightly.  Add melted chocolate and whisk smooth.  Let the batter rest for 30 minutes.
3.    Heat griddle and grease with butter.  Pour ¼ cup portions of the batter into the hot griddle and cook over medium heat until bubbles form on the surface.  Turn over carefully and cook for another 1-2  minutes.  Serve warm.

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