Monday, May 16, 2011

Cornmeal Pancakes with Blueberry Raspberry Syrup

One thing I love about being vegan is that it has given me a new way of thinking about food. And I really love thinking about food. Throughout my life, I have always been a bit of a slave to my cravings, and they are often bemusing. For example, the whole time I was reading The Good Earth, I craved Dim Sum Sticky Rice. Studying tangents in Geometry had me salivating over Tangerine Beef from my favorite Chinese restaurant. And several moments in my life have made me hungry for cornmeal pancakes: reading Laura Ingalls Wilder’s classic book series, Jack London’s Call of the Wild, and the quintessentially Californian year dedicated to studying the Gold Rush. Something about being out in the mountains, eating your food off tin plates, and heating coffee over your campfire demands tender, hearty cornmeal pancakes. And even though I don’t like to do any of the aforementioned activities, I still enjoy an outdoorsy breakfast in the comfort of my home.

Cornmeal Pancakes
adapted from The Joy of Cooking

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons stone ground cornmeal
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup unsweetened non dairy milk
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
3 tablespoons water

Combine the cornmeal, flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. In a blender, mix the flaxseed and water, and blend until thick and frothy. Add the flaxseed mixture to the milk, oil, and maple syrup. Whisk thoroughly, then add to the dry ingredients. Heat a skillet over medium heat. The skillet is ready when a splash of water sizzles and evaporates quickly. Pour 1/4 cupfus of batter onto the skillet. When the pancakes start to bubble in the middle, and look cooked around the edges, flip them, about 5 minutes. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes on the other side. Serve immediately!

Blueberry Raspberry Syrup

1/2 cup frozen blueberries
1/2 cup frozen raspberries
1/4 cup  water plus 1 tablespoon
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tablespoon cornstarch

In a small saucepan, combine the blueberries, raspberries, 1/4 cup water and maple syrup. Heat over medium heat until the mixture boils. Simmer until the fruit breaks down, and the mixture thickens slightly, about 5 minutes. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water. Add to the fruit and simmer briefly until the mixture becomes thick. Serve immediately.

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