Hurdles; They slow us down and are barriers to get where we want to go, but ultimately, they encourage us to stretch and learn. Gluten free baking was a big hurdle for me. Daunting, difficult, and rather unrewarding…at first.
And now, as I have figuratively stretched my GF baking muscles and built them up little by little, I am in my element again, having cleared those hurdles. I have figured things out, “rules” if you will, that help me to be creative once again and make up my own recipes but ultimately help me to conjure up deliciousness that can’t be detected as “gluten free” and are thoroughly appreciated by anyone gluten intolerant or not.
These blueberry and lemon pancakes are the perfect example. I had a spring in my step yesterday morning as the sun poured through my kitchen windows and a beautiful homegrown Meyer lemon was almost glowing in its bowl. Fresh blueberries from my mother’s garden were also bursting at the seams.
Pancakes, ones created on the fly, would be the means to transport these lovelies into a beautiful breakfast, one that could be devoured by my sleepy teenage daughter (and me!) and would possibly even start her day off with a smile as she began to consider her hurdles, a plethora of tests and assignments awaiting her at school.
As I chewed these soft, tender, tart and sweetly delectable pancakes, I felt that I cleared yet one more hurdle in my GF baking journey. As we both scale our hurdles one by one, I hope that I have set an example for her along life’s way and have taught her that challenges, although presumably uncomfortable, are meant to be dealt with, head on and that flying into the unknown can often be rewarding and at the very least exciting.
If only all of life’s hurdles could be solved with pancakes. If only…
Lemon Blueberry Pancakes (AP Flour and GF Flour Versions)
A Sweet & Crumby Original Recipe inspired by Annalise Roberts’ Book, Gluten-Free Baking Classics
Makes 12 medium sized pancakes
2 cups home made gluten free flour blend 1 from my GF tab (also from GF Baking Classics)
4 tablespoons buttermilk powder or milk powder
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2-2/3 cup of mashed very ripe bananas (1-2 banans depending on size)
2/3 cup buttermilk, low-fat milk or milk substitute
2 eggs, slightly beaten
2 tablespoons Canola oil
zest of one lemon (no white pith!)
1/4 teaspoon lemon extract if you have it (if not no worries, it won’t make or break this)
3/4 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
+ 1 T. GF flour blend to stir with berries
+1-2 T. butter and Canola oil for the pan
AP Flour Version
2 c.all purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 c. mashed banana
1 1/2 c. buttermilk
4 tablespoons Canola oil
zest of one lemon
1/4 teaspoon lemon extract
3/4 cup of fresh or frozen blueberries
+ 1 T. flour to stir with berries
+ 1-2 T. butter and Canola Oil for the pan
To make the pancakes: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour through salt.
In a separate bowl, whisk together mashed banana through Canola oil. Stir in lemon zest and lemon extract.
Begin to heat up your pan or griddle on medium heat. Your griddle needs to be nice and hot to cook a fluffy pancake. Add 1-2 T. of butter and 1-2 T. of Canola oil to the griddle depending on the size of your pan. Grease it amply as the butter melts and soak up excess liquid with a paper towel (don’t burn yourself or catch paper towel on fire…not my problem). My griddle spans two burners and requires the 2 T. of each.
For the GF version: Add the liquid mixture to the dry mixture and beat like nobody’s business with a whisk. GF batters usually benefit from being thoroughly combined. Since no gluten is forming, you don’t have to worry about a tough batter from over mixing.
For the AP flour version: Add the liquid mixture to the dry ingredients and whisk until just combined and flour isincorporated. You don’t want to overmix pancakes, or they will get tough. In a small bowl or the empty bowl from the liquid ingredients stir the blueberries with a tablespoon of flour. This will help the blueberries from sinking in your batter. Stir the blueberries into the pancake patter.
Your griddle is hot enough when you can put a drip of pancake batter on the pan and it will barely sizzle. If it sizzles and burns, your pan is too hot. Ladle your pancake batter onto the griddle in about 3 inch rounds. I use my 3/4 measuring cup to ladle the batter on. It seems to be a good amount of batter. Cook until pancakes begin to bubble. Take a peek with your spatula and if it’s golden, then flip it. Cook another minute on the flipped side. Remove and repeat until all of the batter is cooked up.