Love pancakes, hate flipping?
September 3, 2014 7:36 PM   Subscribe

Let's bake pancake squares! Everything you knew about breakfast is a lie.

Pancake squares exploded onto Pinterest in 2012 [nagging login prompt, hit Esc to dismiss] from this 2008 recipe at Big Red Kitchen. From there the original source is uncredited, but may well be this identical recipe at allrecipes.com: undated, but with positive reviews dating back to 2001.

King Arthur's Flourish blog picked up the trend in 2014: "plenty of you have been doing this for years, but for me… a revelation."
posted by We had a deal, Kyle (80 comments total) 43 users marked this as a favorite
 
bonus lifehack: pour your pancake mix into this kind of pan (pintrest doesn't know what it's calle,d maybe research later) and you get pancake loaf.

you can slice up a big thick piece or a thin piece depending on how hungry you are
posted by boo_radley at 7:41 PM on September 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


I make pancake mini-muffins ... Same idea. All done at once, no flipping, easy to set out for people rising at different times, fun for little kids to dip in syrup. I make them for holiday weekends when people sleep in and family is visiting.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 7:42 PM on September 3, 2014


Wait...if you make a pancake, but in an oven instead of a pan, haven't you just made...cake?
posted by Bugbread at 7:45 PM on September 3, 2014 [63 favorites]


Even easier is the rice-cooker pancake. Literally pour the batter in the rice-cooker, press the ON button, and 20 minutes later: GIANT FLUFFY PANCAKE.
posted by mothershock at 7:48 PM on September 3, 2014 [6 favorites]


this kind of pan (pintrest doesn't know what it's calle,d maybe research later)

That is a pan for baking bread. It is called a bread pan.
posted by Sys Rq at 7:50 PM on September 3, 2014 [21 favorites]


Baking bacon is the only way to go. It comes out perfectly done. Waffle irons work well for bacon too, I am told.

Even better about baking bacon is you can do it while the oven is heating up, in case you don't have room for that and your oven pancakes or biscuits or whatever at the same time. So you're getting stuff cooked while you're waiting for the oven to get ready.

You don't need to line the pan with anything for the bacon. Maybe a wire rack if you're worried about grease, but fuck, it's bacon, right?
posted by middleclasstool at 7:51 PM on September 3, 2014 [3 favorites]


You can however line the pan with a sheet of heavy-duty foil, then cleanup for the grease is just wait for it to solidify, carefully gather and wad up the foil, and throw it all away.
posted by middleclasstool at 7:52 PM on September 3, 2014


But what about the brown on the outside? It has to be brown on the outside, doesn't it?
posted by Anitanola at 7:53 PM on September 3, 2014 [8 favorites]


I've made ricemaker bread, wafflebread, and toaster bread. The first two were OK, the third one was awful.
posted by boo_radley at 7:56 PM on September 3, 2014


I will try the pancakes. I've long since been converted to doing bacon in the oven. Parchment is what I use, and it makes cleanup very easy.
posted by in278s at 8:00 PM on September 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Oven bacon has been going on in my family for quite some time....consistent texture, and as noted above easy clean up. I still like it on the stove though. The cracking and spitting make a perfect morning with a good pastry and coffee.
posted by Benway at 8:03 PM on September 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Well listen if you're going to go to all the trouble of using an oven do yourself a favor and make a German pancake/Dutch baby instead.
posted by Doleful Creature at 8:08 PM on September 3, 2014 [22 favorites]


But..? Is this? I mean...?

Ok, FINE. I'll do it. For science. goddamninternet.
posted by amanda at 8:10 PM on September 3, 2014 [2 favorites]


If you're going to be this lazy, just go for toaster waffles.
posted by Zalzidrax at 8:12 PM on September 3, 2014


Baking bacon: yes. It works and it works well. Your house doesn't stink of bacon and you don't get grease everywhere. (And yes at first I thought it was some attempt to healtify bacon or something... nope it's pretty much just like perfect pan bacon, and easier to get all your slices Just Right.)

Baking pancakes? Sorry, that's just called cake. It's not exactly like cooking bread products in the oven is a novelty.
posted by aspo at 8:13 PM on September 3, 2014 [3 favorites]


I'm not a member of Team Pancake (unless homemade sourdough, because Oh My God), but for any amount over a couple of pieces the oven is the only way to cook bacon. I learned about it from a comment here on MeFi actually, and after the first time I cooked bacon that way I felt betrayed by all the years I had been doing it the other way.

There are actually a whole bunch of things that are easier in the oven (e.g. braises, stews, caramelized onions, sausages, etc) but for whatever reason recipes almost always call for stovetop cooking, maybe as a long-expired leftover legacy of cooking with wood, which is slow and hard to manage for baking.

You don't need to line the pan with anything for the bacon

This. However, if you dispose of the grease by giving it to the dog (after letting it cool of course), be prepared for a very long night of emergency goings-out.
posted by Dip Flash at 8:13 PM on September 3, 2014 [2 favorites]


I wasn't really planning...it's just that I try to keep our carbs kind of...

How much batter do you use, in a smaller rice cooker?
posted by Lyn Never at 8:19 PM on September 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Now mix sriracha and maple syrup and brush it on your oven baking bacon. Watch it carefully to avoid the sugar burning too much.
posted by srboisvert at 8:26 PM on September 3, 2014 [5 favorites]


That looked way to fluffy and fragile too me. No thanks.
posted by oddman at 8:30 PM on September 3, 2014


But what about the brown on the outside? It has to be brown on the outside, doesn't it?

YES BY GOD

I want nothing to do with these grotesque abomination sham pancakes

shamcakes
posted by elizardbits at 8:35 PM on September 3, 2014 [51 favorites]


Your house doesn't stink of bacon

I am nearly dumbfounded at the mere idea of anyone seeing this as negative
posted by NoraReed at 8:37 PM on September 3, 2014 [22 favorites]


Ok. I've done this and the rice cooker pancake and they both miss a serious point. The pancake has the flavor and texture we love because it is fried. Fried gets you those darker, crunchy, butter-browned (or bacon greased) edges that these other treatments do not.

And trust me: you will miss them.
posted by sourwookie at 8:39 PM on September 3, 2014 [8 favorites]


The pancake is a lie
posted by ericbop at 8:44 PM on September 3, 2014 [2 favorites]


OK BUT WAIT YOU ARE SO WRONG. I previously was like you, a lover of bacony goodness. And then I moved in to a building that shared its backyard with a burger place. I spent the next 6 years unable to open my windows at any time without immediately flooding my entire home with the smell of bacon. The first time it happened I thought it was just marvelous. OH HOW DELIGHTFUL I thought to myself, so stupidly. And then the second and the third and the fourth, similarly, yum bacon!

By the end of month #1 I wanted to die. By the end of month #6 I swore eternal vengeance on all things pork. By the end of year #1 I was doing a lot of meth so I don't really remember much aside from 30 hour playstation binges but I do recall punching my friend Pete in the kidneys when he came over and was like WOW THAT BACON SMELLS GREAT.

the smell of bacon haunts my dreams like a creeping villain, an eldritch horror, a delicious slenderman of anguish and despair
posted by elizardbits at 8:47 PM on September 3, 2014 [31 favorites]


I bake bacon and my house smells like bacon. My stovetop remains clean, which is the nice part. We use a foil liner because scraping off a cookie sheet is no fun.

I spent years ruining shirts and burning my arms and never getting the bacon quite right and having to clean up spattered grease everywhere. Years. Fie on skillet bacon, if I have an oven handy.

I have no self-control where pancakes are concerned so I just don't make them. I go to restaurants if I want them, so that I don't actually have the chance to eat the entire batch myself.
posted by emjaybee at 8:50 PM on September 3, 2014


Isn't that just a clafouti?
posted by Mei's lost sandal at 8:55 PM on September 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Remind me never to eat any meal at the author's house because by all measures they don't know how to cook.
posted by grumpybear69 at 8:56 PM on September 3, 2014 [2 favorites]


The whole point of pancakes is that I dunk some mix in some water, shove it on the hotplate and about 8-10 minutes later I have fluffy goodness.

Why exactly do I want to overcomplicate this by introducing baking? Especially when cold pancakes from the fridge with butter are just as delicious.
posted by Talez at 8:56 PM on September 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


The smell of bacon makes me want to heave.

I do want to try rice cooker pancakes, however. Just for the novelty. Hmm, I just need to buy a rice cooker. . .
posted by Ik ben afgesneden at 9:29 PM on September 3, 2014


Pan-frying bacon (although super-delicious) is like slow torture to me; the spitting grease stings your hands as you try to precariously grab and flip each piece

Hey, buddy. Buddy. C'mere. I've got a hot culinary tip that's gonna totally blow your mind. You ready? You ready for this? You ready for me to totally rock your goddamn world?

Tongs.
posted by Itaxpica at 9:35 PM on September 3, 2014 [18 favorites]


I grew up in a household with an Aga, so baked bacon was the only way to go. The fact that this author didn't know about this is making me rethink humanity in a way that I haven't contemplated since the sit or stand debate.
posted by arcticseal at 9:45 PM on September 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


Hey, buddy. Buddy. C'mere. I've got a hot culinary tip that's gonna totally blow your mind. You ready? You ready for this? You ready for me to totally rock your goddamn world?

Tongs.
--Itaxpica

I use chopsticks.
posted by eye of newt at 9:57 PM on September 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


I grew up in a household with an Aga, so baked bacon was the only way to go.

I am sure I have cooked bacon on the hot burner on an Aga. Am I imagining this? The one I used had a simmer burner and a scorching burner, plus either one or two ovens it was a different way to cook but kept the kitchen gloriously warm.
posted by Dip Flash at 10:00 PM on September 3, 2014


More important, for stovetop bacon: a mesh spatter guard. Less ouchy; less greasy cleanup.

I keep meaning to do oven bacon but never remember to.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 10:14 PM on September 3, 2014


I agree with elizardbits. These are SHAMCAKES. You might as well be making muffins.

I make pancakes (vegan, or grain-free, or white flour or from a mix) every weekend for the fam and have a rhythm down: prep batter, start bacon (in the oven), heat griddle, wash fruit, start first batch of pancakes, heat syrup, heat plates, put pancakes off to the side on the back of the stove to stay warm, cook eggs, serve.

I can usually get it all done in 30 minutes (less if I use a mix), and we all feel very fancy, sipping our coffee, eating our pancakes.

If I'm feeling EXTRA fancy, I'll sprinkle some brown sugar on the bacon. It turns a little translucent. I think in some places they call this "millionaire's bacon", but around these parts, we call 'em stained glass bacon.

We started doing this after my husband had eye surgery and had to lie face down for a month. It was an instant way to cheer him up. The tradition has continued, and now includes my daughter and mother-in-law.

I don't know that pancake squares would have had the same cheering impact. I am sure as a one-off they'd be fine, but we always go back to brown circular crispy-tenderness.
posted by offalark at 10:38 PM on September 3, 2014 [6 favorites]



If I'm feeling EXTRA fancy, I'll sprinkle some brown sugar on the bacon


i am HANGRY
posted by elizardbits at 10:41 PM on September 3, 2014 [2 favorites]


I want to insist that the whole reason pancakes were invented was because sometimes you do not have an oven and can only cook things on a pan over a fire, and this was how to do that. But I think the origins of pancakes are probably lost in the mists of time. After all, Wikipedia says "Archaeological evidence suggests that pancakes are probably the earliest and most widespread cereal food eaten in prehistoric societies" and Wikipedia can't be wrong! Ahem.

And there's something homey about the tradition of standing at the stove watching the little bubbles around the edge of the pancake that tell you it's time to flip; something noble in achieving the perfect flip; something social in asking who's ready for another pancake. If you want to all sit down and eat pancakes at the same time, they keep warm between two plates in the oven. Nope, my pancakes will continue to be cooked in a pan. No shamcakes at my house!

Oven bacon though, I'm all over giving that a try.
posted by Athanassiel at 10:42 PM on September 3, 2014 [1 favorite]


>Your house doesn't stink of bacon

I am nearly dumbfounded at the mere idea of anyone seeing this as negative
posted by NoraReed at 8:37 PM on September 3
[13 favorites +] [!]


It's true. I'm a vegetarian because I find meat repulsive and yet I love the smell of bacon.

Though elizardbits' bacon drenched nightmare does give me pause...
posted by JenMarie at 11:01 PM on September 3, 2014 [2 favorites]


Whatever you want to say about the pancakes, go ahead. I'm here to complain about the "blueberries". Those are not blueberries. Those are some kind of grape or something. Blueberries are not big. They are not plump. Blueberries are small, crisp little devils that must be hunted in the wild and picked before the animals get them. Blueberries do not grow, fat, plump and lazy, in the richness of farm soil and warm sun in Georgia or North Carolina or California. Blueberries grow in the thin, sandy soil of the pine forests of the North, making their meager living grabbing what sustenance they can before the depths of winter hit yet again and bury them beneath the merciless drifts. Blueberries must suffer, if they are to truly become blueberries.

You eat what you want. Me, I'm eating real blueberries.
posted by caution live frogs at 11:02 PM on September 3, 2014 [5 favorites]


mothershock: "Even easier is the rice-cooker pancake. Literally pour the batter in the rice-cooker, press the ON button, and 20 minutes later: GIANT FLUFFY PANCAKE."

That sounds marvelous but it is a lie. Or at least, with my rice cooker, you get a rice-cooker full of mostly raw batter and eventually you give up and pull the inner pot out and put it in the oven. Which in the long run turned out very tasty but like aspo said, at some point you have to admit you're just making a cake.
posted by RobotHero at 11:11 PM on September 3, 2014


I worry about my oven temp, since I've never found the oven / bacon sitch workable, esp with thicker cuts. After a half hour I'm just sort of steaming with impatience wondering when it will crisp up. But I get the point, having seen it action at my sister's place. Has anyone tried the Bittman / water (I think it's him?) strategy?

And having been a lifelong burger lover, I will also admit this is no longer a problem, since dating a vegetarian Morningstar Farms has pretty much obviated my need for bacon. And this is said as someone who eats pork without any reservation.

Big ups to the Dutch Baby mention. Definitely the baking pancake way to go.
posted by 99_ at 11:12 PM on September 3, 2014


Imma lay some science on all y'all...you can pull ANY cake out of the oven and put butter and syrup on it.

Seriously.

Bonus deliciousness: add liquor. Rum cake is basically cake with rum in the cake + a glaze of butter, sugar, and rum dumped on it after.
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 11:47 PM on September 3, 2014 [3 favorites]


Okay. Here's the latest from Goofyy's pancake kitchen. I call it Angelfood Pancake. It's made nearly fat-free (whole egg has some fat). The egg is beaten into nearly soft-peak, but without removing the yolk. Non-fat plain yogurt is used in place of buttermilk. I use a packaged single serving of 180 grams. Equivalent for this to 1/2 cup.

First, you want your egg and yogurt at room temperature.

Measure 80-90 grams of flour. I currently use 40g rice flour, 40g buckwheat, and 10g wheat to make the batter more sticky.

I add 2 Tablespoons of oat bran and 4 Tablespoons of wheat bran. That's equal parts by weight. If you eat this alone, best you cut that in half. I don't recommend increasing oat bran over wheat unless you're experienced.

half-teaspoon of baking powder and 1/4 tsp of baking soda. Mix dry ingredients well and set aside.

Preheat a 7" non-stick pan, with a high lid. Medium heat. Heat minimum of 5 minutes.

Break your egg and whisk it a bit. Now beat. Electric is best! It's going to take a bit, you want very thick foam, nearly "soft peaks". Then mix in the yogurt, and don't miss any of the liquid. Then mix in the dry. The lack of gluten means over-mixing shouldn't be a problem.

Poor it all out into the pan and cover. Time 5 minutes! After 3 minutes, you may wish to wipe moisture from inside the lid. The top should look at least a bit solid, when you get to flip. Cover again and cook for 3 minutes. Presto!

I quarter it and split it open. Eat like bread or like a pancake, as you wish. It's high-fiber, and low fat. When I'm dieting, I don't get enough food to keep things running, so this cake is a huge benefit. YMMV.
posted by Goofyy at 12:06 AM on September 4, 2014 [3 favorites]


But what about the brown on the outside? It has to be brown on the outside, doesn't it?

Real Swedish oven pancakes are brown on the outside. I don't know what these folks are doing. Maybe it's some Farenheit/Celcius thing? Or vikings?

(tip: the corner bits are the best, thanks to twice as much edge goodness.)

(protip: cut the leftovers into small rectangular pieces, and fry them on the stove the day after. even better than the corners. also quite possibly the only thing my dad could cook without messing anything up.)
posted by effbot at 12:09 AM on September 4, 2014 [2 favorites]


I wonder if it holds up well enough that you could put scrambled eggs and bacon on it and roll it up as a breakfast swiss cake roll...
posted by jason_steakums at 12:35 AM on September 4, 2014


Pancake - a cake you make in a pan. supposed to be kind of easy and quick. Also, fresh out of the pan, they're hot and light. As an adult, I realized that they're quite tasty on their own - no syrup, just a little butter.
posted by theora55 at 12:35 AM on September 4, 2014


For this is the Law of the Kitchen
As old and as true as the sky
Where bacon's concerned, you should bake it---
(Though she who would break it may fry.)
posted by The otter lady at 1:12 AM on September 4, 2014 [3 favorites]


You can however line the pan with a sheet of heavy-duty foil, then cleanup for the grease is just wait for it to solidify, carefully gather and wad up the foil, and throw it all away.

What??? You don't throw it away, you keep it and use it for everything else, including frying the pancakes like god intended.
posted by solotoro at 1:35 AM on September 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


pancake batter is basically cake batter

wait wait hang on

Does this mean I could like, grab some cake mix and make birthday cake pancakes? Because if so I must attempt this immediately.
posted by NMcCoy at 1:45 AM on September 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


You can make birthday cake pancakes! I am partial to the mix with the jimmies in it, what is that, Funfetti? Anyway, they turn out fine. Keep an eye on them, the higher sugar content can burn a little quicker than you expect.
posted by blnkfrnk at 2:39 AM on September 4, 2014 [2 favorites]


"Microwaved X is good" is false for most values of X, and the exceptions (soups and other uniformly wet foods) are usually obvious, but for some reason microwaving works for bacon too. You still have to watch it like a hawk (cook times vary with thickness, 30 seconds too long and there will be burnt spots everywhere, 30 seconds too short and there will be underdone spots everywhere) but you don't have to preheat a pan or an oven, cook time is faster, cleanup is easier, and the quality is much more uniform than pan-fried bacon since you don't get spots curling into and away from the heat.
posted by roystgnr at 4:18 AM on September 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


Y'all are making me sad, throwing away perfectly good bacon grease. It's a precious resource, good for frying anything in, greasing pans, subbing in for butter or shortening in biscuits or pie crust. My grandma kept a big canister of grease on the stove, and so do I.
posted by rikschell at 4:39 AM on September 4, 2014 [7 favorites]


Pancakes are a quickbread, like cornbread, and of course could be baked but that would not be pancakes, as has been said. But it makes me think of the reverse - should I make jalapeno cornbread batter and cook it like pancakes? For dinner? Yes, I think I should. With baked bacon.
posted by Ella Fynoe at 5:03 AM on September 4, 2014 [5 favorites]


Pancake batter is basically identical to Yorkshire Pudding batter so the Dutch babies/German/Swedish pancake variations can fit in the Yorkshire Pudding class with just a little more raising. For some reason I can't work out, it's the lack of a raising agent that makes them rise. Toad-in-the-hole, same batter. Substitute water for milk for a lighter batter in all cases (which is a good tip for scrambled eggs too.)

Personally I think that oven-raised batter with anything but beef and gravy is a bit of a waste of not so much ingredients, cos it's only eggs and flour, but a waste of good oven technique. Like many simple foods it's tricky to get the baking just right unless you learned at your mother's knee. And my mother was a hopeless cook. Yorkshire pud's one of the great Northern ritual foods (like broth.) My Gran and my Great Aunt cooked on a coal fire range in the living room, I well remember the blue shimmer of smoking hot oil you have to spill the batter into if you want the pud to rise.
posted by glasseyes at 5:12 AM on September 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


On the question of frying cornbread batter - does the corn have enough time to cook through if it's in pancake form? Mind you that's an issue with wheat flour pancakes as well when your techniques a bit off.
posted by glasseyes at 5:14 AM on September 4, 2014


I'd think the cornmeal would cook at about the same rate as whole wheat flour, so probably don't want to use a super hot pan but it should work. There seem to be recipes out there...
posted by Ella Fynoe at 5:22 AM on September 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


As long as we're trying alternate recipes, don't forget the Day of the Pancakes
posted by MtDewd at 5:27 AM on September 4, 2014


smoking hot oil

Lard. It was lard. Don't remember when I last cooked with that.
posted by glasseyes at 5:28 AM on September 4, 2014


What I miss most in a vegetarian household: my coffee can of bacon grease.

Pan-made pancake maker (although I'm more of a waffle type) and if it's going in the oven it's a Dutch baby!

Still, interesting to see what people are up to. Fun post.
posted by Lesser Shrew at 5:45 AM on September 4, 2014


This is probably the right place to mention that I recently bought a big 22" electric griddle, and it has changed my life cooking-pancakes-wise. So many pancakes all at once.
posted by Lazlo Hollyfeld at 6:45 AM on September 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


What??? You don't throw it away, you keep it and use it for everything else, including frying the pancakes like god intended.

Not if you're really racking it up. I save fat, yeah, bacon and duck mostly, but we mostly (not always by a long shot) try to cook with healthier fats. If I saved every dripping I'd have racked up a five-gallon bucket by now. 'Sides, I prefer the taste of pancakes cooked in butter.
posted by middleclasstool at 6:48 AM on September 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


I'd think the cornmeal would cook at about the same rate as whole wheat flour, so probably don't want to use a super hot pan but it should work.

It does, for the most part, but you have to pay attention to pancake thickness because otherwise they will sometimes stay raw in the middle, which is terrible. If you fry in clarified butter you can get away with longer cooking times and nice browning without the same worries of burning as you would with other fats.
posted by elizardbits at 7:02 AM on September 4, 2014 [2 favorites]


Half of making pancakes is perfecting the practice: finding the right recipe, understanding your stove and griddle or pan and finding the perfect temperature/heat level, how to read pancakes to know when to flip them, and making pancakes the right size to flip with ease.

My current recipe is this one, but with less baking powder (my first batch tasted like baking powder at points). And I use whole wheat flour, making heartier pancakes. All the ingredients are things that you can expect to have in your kitchen, and mixing is nothing tricky. Mix, pour, and wait pancake cakes ruins that experience. (Or perhaps I don't have enough excitement and challenge in my life.)
posted by filthy light thief at 7:22 AM on September 4, 2014 [1 favorite]


Serious question: we make an epic brunch of MANY things, including french toast, bacon, stewed berries in triple sec, and sometimes omeletes/hashbrowns/etc on the side just for kicks.
I haven't tried making pancakes yet because my last attempts were droopy and raw and burned and sad.

What's the fool proof method? I insist on frying because the crispy part is the best part.

Can I add frozen blueberries to it, somehow? I love blueberry pancakes.
posted by olya at 7:54 AM on September 4, 2014


Can I add frozen blueberries to it, somehow? I love blueberry pancakes.

Yes, if you can find good ones, you can add them to nearly anything frozen and they turn out well. Wyler's sells wild-harvested blueberries, frozen, can be picked up in small bags at a lot of grocery stores or large bags at Costco. I like to rinse them briefly in water before adding them to batters. It doesn't need to be done, but it does remove some of the excess blue juice from the outside of the berries, which keeps your entire batch of batter from becoming Smurf-colored.

Best bet with griddle or pan pancakes is to get the griddle to a good temp (I like 350°F) with a decent oil (lard, bacon grease are the old standbys, but coconut oil works well and handles the temperature without breaking down - Canola can be OK but at least some varieties I have tried, mostly sprays probably, leave some kind of awful residue that gunks up the griddle).

Make your batter relatively thin. Stir with a fork, check to see if the batter runs cleanly off of the fork, leaving a film between the tines. If it doesn't run, add more water. No film, add more dry ingredients.

Pour about 1/4 - 1/2 cup (depending on desired size) of batter onto the hot griddle. If berries are already in batter, you're good; if not, sprinkle them on top a bit after pouring the batter. Watch. You want to see bubbles forming in the center, and the edges starting to crisp. Try to flip it before the bubbles stop forming - if they pop and stay open, you get a pancake with holes on one side. Flip over, and for side 2 you just have to guess - check one after a bit and see if it's brown enough.

When done, serve hot. Piling them on a plate lets them get condensation on the plate, which makes them limp, so eat fast and only prep as many as needed at one time. In a pinch, throw them into the toaster for a second to crisp them slightly and warm them up again. (This is the best way to re-heat any leftovers, too!)
posted by caution live frogs at 8:09 AM on September 4, 2014 [2 favorites]


Flip over, and for side 2 you just have to guess - check one after a bit and see if it's brown enough.

For side 2 pancake sleuthing when I stop seeing steam, I wait about 30 seconds and it seems to work pretty well. I suppose that's basically guessing though.

Adding frozen blueberries can make it a little more tricky especially if they end up grouped toward the center and bring down the temp and leave you with uncooked batter.
posted by jeremias at 8:33 AM on September 4, 2014


Am I the only person that cooks pancakes on a non-stick hotplate with no grease or oil whatsoever?
posted by Talez at 8:36 AM on September 4, 2014


Isn't the nonstick coating bad for you though? I feel like the internets told me that one time and I decided to believe it.
posted by elizardbits at 8:43 AM on September 4, 2014 [2 favorites]


From WebMD: Just how safe are nonstick pots and pans?
The answer is a qualified one. They're safe, says Robert L. Wolke, Ph.D., a professor emeritus of chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh and the author of What Einstein Told His Cook: Kitchen Science Explained, as long as they're not overheated. When they are, the coating may begin to break down (at the molecular level, so you wouldn't necessarily see it), and toxic particles and gases, some of them carcinogenic, can be released.
Safe, as long as you aren't prone to burning a lot of food.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:52 AM on September 4, 2014


My short guide to pancakes, from scratch or a mix:
  1. Find a good consistency for your batter - no too runny, and not too thick.*
  2. Don't over-mix the batter, and let it sit for a bit;
  3. Heat the skittle to a medium temperature (I don't know exact degrees, I just somewhere in the middle of options for range heat)**;
  4. Pour out batter on the heated surface (non-stick or oiled/greased, your pick);
  5. If the batter is a bit thick, spread it out to ensure the pancake isn't too thick;
  6. Watch for little bubbles to form in the middle of the pancake, then lift the edge to see how the surface is browning;
  7. Once the underside is a nice golden-brown, flip the pancake with a wide spatula;
  8. Wait about half as long as it took for the first side to cook, and take your pancake off the griddle or out of the pan;
  9. Eat up!
* I like thicker pancakes, but others prefer thinner 'cakes. For example, caution live frogs' mix sounds too thin for my tastes.
** Finding the right temperature for your cooktop and pan or griddle can take time, and may need to be adjusted as you continue to cook and the cook surface heats up.

Personal preferences: I am now very fond of whole wheat flour pancakes cooked in bacon grease. I cook up the bacon first, then drain off the excess grease, adding it back to the pan as I cook more pancakes. Five pieces of bacon wasn't quite enough to make grease for the default batch size of the high altitude recipe I also linked upthread.

As for topping, I'm a fan of real maple syrup, grade B (discussed previously). It's more expensive than artificial syrup that I ate when I was growing up, but oh so worth the cost. Add on some apple sauce or peanut butter, and keep the butter for your toast.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:07 AM on September 4, 2014 [2 favorites]


Safe, as long as you aren't prone to burning a lot of food.

Ha, so technically unsafe in my case.
posted by elizardbits at 10:07 AM on September 4, 2014


Pancake batter is basically identical to Yorkshire Pudding batter...

I think we have a British/American difference here. You're probably thinking of crepes, which have a similar batter to Yorkshire Puddings. (American?) Pancakes are totally different beasts.

Yorkshire Puddings are like popovers in that they are leavened only with the steam generated during baking. Pancakes are leavened, either with baking powder or baking soda + an acid (like buttermilk). They are fluffy and not flat like a crepe.
posted by delicious-luncheon at 10:20 AM on September 4, 2014


If I saved every dripping I'd have racked up a five-gallon bucket by now. 'Sides, I prefer the taste of pancakes cooked in butter.

Us too. We create a small amount of bacon grease, but love crock-potting pork ribs or briskets, which creates a lot of grease. And getting rid of it all is a problem.

We aren't going to use it all, ever; it mustn't be put down the drain; throwing it in the trash seems wrong; and you can't put it in the compost.

So now I take it to the field behind our house and dump it for the coyotes/whatever else will lick it up/eat it. This is probably wrong. But I can't think of what else to do with it.
posted by emjaybee at 11:07 AM on September 4, 2014


The really evil thing you can serve with pancakes (or crêpes, or waflles) is a mix of maple syrup, heavy cream & butter, you pour it together in a pan and let is reduce till you like the taste/consistency (quantities are also to be adjusted to taste). It's evil because, well you saw the ingredients, but it's insanely good.

I was about to post my tips, but I realized I'm making crêpes not pancakes.
posted by coust at 11:45 AM on September 4, 2014 [3 favorites]


The pancake as art.

The really evil thing you can serve with pancakes (or crêpes, or waflles) is a mix of maple syrup, heavy cream & butter, you pour it together in a pan and let is reduce till you like the taste/consistency (quantities are also to be adjusted to taste).

What proportions, roughly? 1 C maple syrup, 1 C cream, 2 Tb butter?
posted by sebastienbailard at 3:25 PM on September 4, 2014


I made pancake squares for dinner (plain, no fruits.) The texture was somewhere between a pancake and french toast casserole. They were delightful. Next time I'm doing a cinnamon sugar snickerdoodle crust. (Turkey bacon was done in the microwave.)
posted by fluffy battle kitten at 5:33 PM on September 4, 2014


3. Heat the skittle > ??? > skittle > skittle > skittle > skittle > skittle

Dude, I thought we were just making pancakes!
posted by Sys Rq at 7:39 PM on September 4, 2014


American pancakes/popovers/Yorkshire pud/crepes

Imagine that! Learn something new every day.
posted by glasseyes at 4:06 AM on September 5, 2014


Sys Rq: "That is a pan for baking bread. It is called a bread pan."

??????

?

posted by boo_radley at 11:34 AM on September 5, 2014


Update: The cake batter pancakes were a delicious success. I'd share a photo but they all vanished before I had the chance to take one.
posted by NMcCoy at 12:15 AM on September 14, 2014


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