We have long been told that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so it comes as no surprise that breakfast recipes are continually evolving.
Whether you choose to indulge in eggs Benedict rich and dripping with buttery hollandaise, or opt for a healthy and refreshing bowl of mixed fruit and yogurt, there is no denying that breakfast food tastes great no matter the time of day.
This past week, after an unusually hard week of work, I was lucky enough to come home to dinner made and waiting for me on the table.
SARAH GREEN/Sun-Gazette Correspondent
Shown are ricotta poppyseed pancakes with blueberry syrup, an original gluten-free recipe by Sarah Green.
Fumbling through my purse trying to find my key, I struggled to open the door as quickly as possible because I knew that the perfect smell of bacon that had effortlessly made its way through my building was coming from my apartment.
I started wondering if we were having BLT's or maybe a cobb salad. When the door finally opened, there were no sandwiches or salads to be found, but to my surprise a breakfast buffet. A pile of chocolate chip pancakes, crisp bacon, fresh fruit, and my boyfriend, with a look on his face that spoke volumes saying "I had a craving, so I made pancakes."
It was completely perfect, and re-affirmed my notion that there is never a wrong time for breakfast, especially chocolate chip pancakes.
For those of you that have made pancakes at home, specifically gluten free pancakes, I am sure you know how dense they can be. There is a fine line between dense hockey puck like pancakes and a batter that never comes together. Sitting on the couch that night after a simple and extremely filling dinner, I began researching the perfect pancake and testing different methods.
Purists claim whipping the egg whites and folding them in is the only way, while others rely on a box batter as their base then jazz them up on their own.
The more I read, the more I began seeing recipes using ricotta, so I decided to create my own pancake recipe using the soft Italian cheese and give them a try.
The result was a perfectly light and refreshing pancake that kept me coming back for more. I used a flour blend called "Cup4Cup" which I always have had luck with, but you can substitute traditional gluten-free all-purpose flour, but if it already has baking powder in it, you should cut the baking powder in this recipe in half.
Ricotta Poppyseed Pancakes
3/4 cup AP gluten-free flour.
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons poppyseeds
2 eggs, beaten lightly
1 cup ricotta cheese,
1/2 teaspoon gluten-free vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
Macerated Blueberry Syrup
3/4 cup blueberries
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon maple syrup
Start by making your syrup. In a small bowl filled with your washed blueberries, sprinkle over the two teaspoons of sugar, lemon zest and maple syrup. Stir until all of the blueberries are coated, then set aside. Adding sugar to the berries will help draw out their natural juices and soften them, making the perfect topping for these pancakes.
While your blueberries are macerating, whisk all of your dry ingredients together in a large bowl, and then set aside. In a smaller bowl, whisk together your eggs with the ricotta and vanilla until the mixture turns a pale yellow. Add the egg mixture into the dry ingredients and fold together until just combined. Drizzle in the milk and set the batter aside. Begin pre-heating a lightly buttered griddle. Over medium heat, add cup of batter at a time and spread it out slightly with the back of the measuring spoon. Allow each side to cook for about 3 to 4 minutes, flipping when the edges of the pancake pull in.
Serve the pancakes with a pat of butter and a heaping spoonful of the blueberries and syrup and enjoy!
Green was first diagnosed with gluten intolerance as a teenager. Soon after, she developed a blog to share her struggles and successes of adapting to a gluten-free life. Over the years, her passion for wellness has turned into a profession.
A 2012 graduate of The Culinary Institute of America in New York, she is continually networking with other gluten-free experts and expanding her knowledge.
Her goal is to make gluten free an option for everyone, not just those in need.
Green may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Her column is published on the second Wednesday of each month.