Pancakes are a great choice for Sunday morning breakfast because we usually have all the ingredients we need hanging around the house, and besides, who doesn’t like pancakes? They’re incredibly simple and easy to make, but to get fluffy, tasty, perfectly cooked pancakes, there are a few tricks to keep in mind. (Adapted from a recipe in The New Best Recipe).
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- ½ tsp. salt
- 1 tbsp. sugar
- 2 cups buttermilk or 2 cups milk + 1 tbsp. lemon juice (adding lemon juice provides the tang reminiscent of buttermilk)
- 1 egg
- 3 tbsp. butter, melted
Mix together the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg and butter into the milk or buttermilk. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry until they are just barely moistened. Avoiding overmixing is the key to light and fluffy pancakes. You want your batter to have plenty of lumps.
Brush a griddle with oil and heat over medium. It’s important to let the batter rest at least 5 minutes and have a hot pan, so give the griddle time to heat. Use paper towels to brush a thin film of oil over the cooking surface.
Use a tablespoon to measure out a silver dollar-sized “test” pancake. The test pancake should be well browned on each side. If it’s too light, you haven’t let the pan heat enough. If it’s too dark, turn down the heat. I always make two or four tests and feed them to the dogs after they’ve cooled down.
When the pan is ready, pour about ¼ cup of batter onto the griddle and let brown on both sides. You’ll know when the pancake is ready to flip when bubbles appear on its surface. If you want to add blueberries, banana slices or chocolate chips to your pancakes, sprinkle them on after pouring the batter on the griddle.
Lower the heat between batches to keep later pancakes from overcooking. Keep cooked pancakes warm on a baking sheet in a 200-degree oven for up to 20 minutes. Leftover batter can be kept covered in the refrigerator for several days.