Despite the fact that my parents never used the “starving children in China” line on me growing up, I really hate wasting food. More specifically, I seem to hate wasting ingredients. Like when I need a handful of chocolate chips for a recipe, but then I have the rest of the bag just sitting there staring at me. And maybe chocolate chips is a poor example, because we all know how easy it is to obliterate a bag one handful at a time every time you pass by the pantry. But I think you get my drift.
I had to buy some raisins to make Mole Poblano a couple months ago, but only needed a tablespoon or so of them. Which of course left almost a half cup of raisins sitting in the bag. And unlike chocolate chips, I’m most definitely not going to use them up by the snacking handful. I really dislike eating raisins straight up. I know I used to like them at one point. I remember getting the little red boxes of raisins with the bonnet woman on the cover in my school lunches frequently. And I promise you Mom, I did eat them! But sometime since elementary school I have completely lost my taste for them. So, what to do…
Enter these ridiculous pancakes. I will happily eat oatmeal raisin cookies, so I figured the pancake version of those cookies wouldn’t be too objectionable. Um, no. They were most certainly not objectionable – not in the least. Much restraint is needed to not inhale the entire batch all by yourself. We raved and raved. And all because I refused to throw out some raisins…
This post is quite appropriate today, in a sort of thematic way, I think. Matt and I are venturing to DC for a wedding this weekend and I realized that we had sitting around some gorgeous rhubarb, some sweet cherries, most of a bag of shredded coconut, and five overripe bananas, all of which would likely decay before we return Sunday evening. I couldn’t let that happen. So I went on what can only be described as an insanity-fueled baking bender today, all to avoid throwing out a few ingredients.
Actually, it was really fun. I might need to do this again sometime. And, I had to walk to the store to get some extra basic ingredients; also, I was on my feet the whole day – so that counts as exercise… right?? Over the next couple months, be on the lookout, because I may be blogging today’s loot! Rhubarb scones, coconut poke cake, cherry muffins, bourbon banana bread, chocolate and salty peanut butter chunk ice cream, and banana and dark chocolate chunk mini muffins. Mmmm….. In the meantime, do NOT deprive yourself of these pancakes!
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup old-fashioned oats
2 tbs packed brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp kosher salt
¾ tsp ground cinnamon
Big pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
2 large eggs
2 cups buttermilk
1 tbs pure maple syrup
¼ cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for the griddle
1/3 cup dark raisins*
*If you should happen to measure out 1/3 cup of raisins, and find a small handful left in the bag, feel free to throw those in too.
In a large bowl, whisk together flour, oats, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk, maple syrup, and melted butter. Add the buttermilk mixture, all at once, to the flour mixture. Fold together with a spatula until all of the flour is incorporated. Do not overmix. Fold in the raisins. Let stand for 5 minutes.
Heat your griddle over medium heat and add a touch of butter to melt. Spoon batter onto hot griddle, about ¼ cup per pancake. Heat until the bottom is browned and the top is bubbly. Flip and cook through, about 2 minutes per side. Adjust your heat level as needed; I find that most of my pancakes get cooked perfectly somewhere between medium and medium-low heat level. When each pancake is done, remove to a plate. Continue until all batter is used up. Serve immediately with extra maple syrup and watch everyone devour them.