Perfect Pancakes and Coffee Filters

By September 5, 2012Fuel
It has become my mission to find the perfect pancake recipe.  But first, what is a “perfect pancake”?  This maybe be different for you, but for me the perfect pancake is:
a) light and fluffy
b) golden brown
c) hearty and healthy (w/ complex carbohydrates, protein, and some good fat)
d) delicious! 
e) served with marvelous toppings

These gluten free banana pancakes, while healthy and delicious, are not light and fluffy, and thus cannot fit into the “perfect pancake” pattern.

Recently, while reading one of my favorite magazines, Runners’ World, I came across a pancake recipe which contained multiple grain bases, including white flour, whole wheat flour, cornmeal, and oats.  But, I am horrible at sticking with recipes, and decided to mix this recipe with a tried and true “yogurt pancake” recipe, which features yogurt as its main ingredient.  One fabulous result of this union is the boosted nutritional quality: a blend of great grains (complex carbs), quality greek yogurt protein, and quality omega 3 fats (the optional walnuts!).
 “Perfect Pancake” (protocol)
In one bowl, whisk dry ingredients:
1 c. all-purpose flour,
1/3 c. each whole wheat flour, cornmeal, and rolled oats
1 T. sugar
1 t. each salt and cinnamon
1/2 t. each baking soda and baking powder
In separate bowl, combine wet ingredients:
2 eggs
1/2 cup greek, nonfat yogurt
1 very ripe banana (*optional)
1 can (1.75 c) light coconut milk (or any milk/nut milk)
1 t. vanilla
handful (1/4 to 1/2 c) walnuts (*optional)

Add wet to dry, and mix with rubber spatula to just incorporate.  Let sit for 10 minutes, or overnight.  Batter should just pour easily, but will be slightly thick, especially if banana is used.  If needed, add milk/water by the Tablespoonful to reach thinner consistency (do not over-liquify!!).
To cook:
Warm pan.  Spray w/ Pam/spread layer of butter.  Turn to low setting.
Pour 1/4 c. sized pancakes.
When bubbles form on surface, flip (should be golden-brown colored).  Cook 1-2 minutes on other side.  If difficult to cook, turn heat lower or make smaller pancakes!
Warm in oven until ready to eat.  Serve with butter, jam, fresh fruit, syrup, ice cream, powdered sugar, nut butter…

…Store leftovers (what leftovers?) in airtight container (once cooled to room temp). 

If you are eating pancakes, chances are that you are drinking coffee with them!  Out of coffee filters for your pour-over cone filter?  Do you have a napkin???  Napkins actually work very well in a cone filter.  I haven’t tried the automatic coffee maker yet…but let me know how that goes.  The napkin, a less selective membrane than the average coffee filter, is more permeable, allowing more of the good stuff into my mug (hmmm…cell biology).

But… is coffee good for me??

A fellow nutrition student and world shaker, Lauren, recently wrote about caffeine on her food/science blog.  Check it out here.

Recent research actually shows that coffee can lower your rate of perceived exertion.  Thus, an athlete might improve performance by tricking his/her body that it is not working as hard as it actually is!

Everything in moderation

More about caffeine and other nutritional supplements soon (I am taking a nutrition seminar on supplements as part of my graduate nutrition work–yay!).

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