I love breakfast.  It’s my favorite meal of the day.  Maybe it’s because there’s so many options as to what you can make into a meal and still call it breakfast.  I mean, what other time can you have bacon, coffee and pastries and call it a meal?
Now my usual weekday breakfast typically consists of a handful of berries, maybe some oatmeal and a couple cups of black coffee.  If I have extra time I might fry up a couple of eggs and bacon and throw them in a tortilla on the way out the door.  But weekend breakfasts, well that’s a whole different story.

There’s few things I love better than waking up on a Saturday morning, firing up a nice big pot of strong coffee and making a huge breakfast feast for me and the fiancée (I’m pretty sure she doesn’t mind it too much either).  It can be french toast, a fritata or a quiche,  or maybe even some hearty breakfast sandwiches. I’ve even been known to throw together a bread pudding when the occasion hits me.

Lately, we’ve both been trying to eat a little healthier.  Nothing crazy, but a little less sugar here, a few less carbs over there, even when it comes to weekend breakfasts.  And while we love all those tasty breakfasts options mentioned above, they aren’t exactly the healthiest options out there.

The good thing about this is, it pushes me outside of my comfort zone when it comes to cooking.  It’s not hard to make something taste good when you make it with tons of fat and sugars, but it’s more of a challenge when you have to make it healthier.

So this past weekend I figured I would try out a new recipe for pancakes.  Instead of my usual lemon ricotta pancakes (which are pretty f’ing good if you ask me), I thought I’d try my hand at making whole wheat pancakes.

The problem with making anything whole wheat is the texture.   It’s much harder to achieve a nice fluffy, pillowy consistency you look for in pancakes using whole wheat flour.   And to add to the challenge, I decided to make them without sugar.

So to get the consistency I was looking for I used a mixture of butter milk (for its acidity) and some club soda.  Club soda can make a batter lighter with a crisp outside.  That’s why it’s often used in making tempura batter.

For sweetness, I used a little bit of raw honey, some agave nectar and fresh blueberries.  The agave and honey have a nice flavor and a far lower impact on your blood sugar than regular sugar, while the blueberries lend some additional tart and sweetness.
And I have to saw they turned out pretty good.   They were almost the same consistency as if I made them from regular flour, but they were a little more hearty and rich, which I enjoyed.  I topped them with just a touch of irish butter and some real maple syrup and they tasted pretty damn good.   And, they gave me the fuel I needed for the 14 miler I ran afterward.

So here’s the recipe I used, heavily modified from one I found on Allrecipes.com:

Ingredients

  • 1 and 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons agave nectar
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup club soda
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups blueberries (fresh or frozen)

Directions

  1. In a food processor or in a large bowl, combine the whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  2. Mix together the wet ingredients into a separate bowl
  3. Make a well in the center of the flour-butter mixture, and add the buttermilk, butter, club soda, blueberries, agave nectar, honey and eggs. Stir until the liquids are just incorporated.  Butter should be a little lumpy
  4. Heat a frying pan over medium heat and grease the surface with 1 tablespoon of butter or oil. Ladle the batter onto the surface to form 4 inch pancakes. Once bubbles form on the top of the pancakes, flip them over, and cook them on the other side for about 2 minutes.



Advertisements