I took some time away from posting recipes here this week so that I could post Some Thoughts on Food and Aging, where I share how I come to choose and save one recipe rather than another as a personal favorite. Like most people, I create a recipe file based on the way I choose to cook and eat, and if you are going to share that with me here, I figure you probably should know what’s behind it all. I am in no way a “health food” advocate, as such. I think that if we are at the very least eating natural foods, prepared lovingly in our home kitchens, within nose-reach of our loved ones, we are well ahead of the game.
The breakfast feast that follows is one that offers the best of all worlds. Pancakes, always a wonderful morning treat, are here transformed into a truly healthy robust morning blast-off with the incorporation of hearty old-fashioned oatmeal, lightened to ethereal perfection by buttermilk, one of my all-time favorite flavor/texture ingredients. Now that you are a party to my above-mentioned weirdly healthy life-time food love affair, you will understand why I chose it. The oatmeal carries less than half the carbohydrates of the same amount of flour, and is loaded with fiber. That’s enough to get my vote, even without the surprisingly scrumptious results.
Then there’s the syrup. Blueberries are loaded with antioxidants. While maple syrup is loaded with carbs, it is also a great activator of antioxidants. A simple blending of the two, using minimum maple syrup gives me the best of both worlds: high antioxidants and low carbs on one lovely, delicious plate. This combination is just nothing short of drop-dead perfect.
Makes about 16
2 cups old-fashioned oats or quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup all purpose flour
3 T sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/2 cups buttermilk
2 large eggs
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Additional melted butter, (preferably clarified) for brushing skillet
Maple-Blueberry Syrup (recipe follows)
Combine first 6 ingredients in large bowl. Whisk buttermilk, eggs, 1/4 cup melted butter and vanilla in medium bowl. Add to dry ingredients; whisk until blended but some small lumps still remain. Let batter stand to thicken, about 2 hours. (Can be prepared up to 1 day ahead. Cover batter and refrigerate.)
Preheat oven to 250° F. Heat heavy large skillet over medium heat. Brush skillet with melted butter. Working in batches, ladle batter by 1/4 cupfuls into skillet. Cook pancakes until bottoms are golden brown and bubbles form on top, about 2 minutes. Turn pancakes over; cook until bottoms are golden brown, about 2 minutes. Transfer to baking sheet. Keep warm in oven. Repeat with remaining batter, brushing skillet with more butter as necessary. Serve with Maple-Blueberry Syrup, or your syrup of choice.
1 (15 ounce) bag frozen (preferably wild) blueberries, or the equivalent of fresh
¼ cup real maple syrup
¼ cup water
Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan, bring to a boil and simmer on low heat for 10 to 15 minutes, to thicken the syrup.