Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Peanut Butter Pancakes for the Ones you Love

So I've got oodles of backlogged recipes to post about, but today I felt like writing about last night's dinner. I wanted to make something different for Valentine's Day. Most fancy Valentine's dishes are not the typical fare that is pleasing to a 5 year old. While Blockette is really good about eating those "weird" things, she doesn't always enjoy them. I wanted to prepare something that the whole family would like, especially my littlest Valentine. I had a recipe from Crepes of Wrath for peanut butter pancakes that seemed like it might fit the bill.

Blockette loves peanut butter. I mean she loves peanut butter as much as Chocolate loves peanut butter. She wants a pbj sandwich nearly every day for lunch. She is already telling me that she doesn't want to eat school lunches in first grade next year, she wants a pbj instead. Guess the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. I ate peanut butter, or peanut butter and honey sandwiches every day through 12th grade!

If you're a regular reader of this silly little blog, you also know that we love to eat breakfast for dinner. I especially love making waffles because there is a standing rule that we don't have dessert when we have syrup at dinner. This made the pancake idea winner for me, because it meant I didn't have to plan a fancy Valentine's dessert either!

Mrblocko was curious why we were having pancakes and not waffles for dinner. I said, well I couldn't find a tasty sounding peanut butter waffle recipe. I wasn't quite sure if this pancake recipe would work as waffles. I wanted to try them out as they were intended first, before I ventured off into unknown territory. There was no sense in ruining a potentially good thing.

As far as pancakes go, these were really good. They had a very distinct peanut butter flavor, which as peanut butter lovers, we thought was a very good thing. Sydney from Crepes of Wrath got this recipe from eat boutique who, in turn, got it from The Food Network's Cooking For Real with Sunny Anderson. Apparently there was a blackberry syrup that was a part of the original recipe. I wish I had known this because I bet it would have tasted fantastic with the peanut butter in the pancakes.

Instead of the blackberry syrup, we ate ours with butter and either syrup, honey, apple butter or strawberry preserves. Mrblocko liked the syrup best, but Blockette and I thought it was a toss up between the preserves and the honey. Mrblocko said that the pancakes would also taste good with chocolate syrup. Then he said he was only joking, but we all know that if we didn't have a little girl to set a good example for he would have gone into the fridge and smothered his pancakes with chocolate goop.

We ate this meal with Cara, or blood oranges. (When I say we, I mean Mrblocko and Blockette because I can't stand oranges, something Mrblocko claimed yesterday that he never knew in the nearly 10 years we've been married. Where has he been?) It was really a happy accident that the oranges were red, but pretty cool for Valentine's Day.

We also had Aidells Chicken and Apple sausage. These are my favorite sausages. Man. They are good, but pricey. I scored a deal at the end of the year with a coupon and a sale, so I stocked up. These little sausages have been talking to me in the freezer for a while now. I thought they'd make a nice treat for Valentine's Dinner. We like to slice them into coins and heat them up so they get crispy, brown and caramelized all over. Yum!

I wish Meijer's carried more of the Aidells brand. Apparently they have a pineapple and bacon flavor and a roasted garlic and asiago flavor that I didn't know about until just now. I think they would enjoy being in my belly so I'll have to keep an eye out around and about for those little gems.

Now that I've gone off on a tangent about sausage, let's get back to the pancakes. One comment I'd like to make on this recipe is to pay attention to your heat level on your stove. The recipe says to cook the pancakes on medium low for 3-4 min per each side. We thought that the heat was too low to cook the pancakes all the way and we cranked the heat up to just shy of medium. Don't do this. You will burn your pancakes. Even on medium low, we found that the pancakes only took 2 minutes on each side. Finally, I did remember to take a picture of the pancakes. Ok. So obviously I didn't remember to take this picture as this is me IN the picture and I haven't figured out how to bi locate myself...yet. Blockette begged to take the picture and I said she could to avoid an argument, figuring I'd take my own and use those for the blog. Nope. Wouldn't you know it, hers turned out better than mine!

Peanut Butter Pancakes from Crepes of Wrath
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 egg
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons milk, plus extra if needed to thin
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter, melted
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon butter

In a large bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. In another bowl, whisk egg, milk, melted peanut butter, and vegetable oil. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Add a little extra milk if batter feels too thick.
Heat griddle over med-low and melt 1T butter in it, then using a paper towel, rub butter around griddle to make a very thin layer (you don’t want your pancakes cooking in a pool of butter). Sprinkle some water over the pan and see what it does. It should dance around but it should NOT sizzle or spurt. When pan is ready, pour 1/4 c batter for each pancake. Don’t overcrowd as they will spread as they cook. Cook 3-4 min per side, til golden. They won’t bubble like normal pancakes because of the thickness of the peanut butter.

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