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Batter Up! The Pancake Story

February 27, 1992|CHARLES PERRY

Dissolve yeast with 1 teaspoon sugar in 1/4 cup lukewarm water and leave in warm place until foamy.

Sift flour into large bowl. Stir in yeast mixture. Add remaining lukewarm water gradually, stirring constantly, until batter is smooth and as thin as crepe batter. Cover bowl and leave to rise in warm place about 1 hour.

Lightly grease 6-inch crepe pan. Heat pan very hot, then reduce and keep heat at medium. Pour about 2 tablespoons batter into pan, tilting to spread all over bottom. When surface loses whiteness, becomes bubbly and comes away from pan easily, but before bottom colors, lift out with spatula. Fry 1 side only. Arrange pancakes on wax paper. (Do not stack; unfried sides remain tacky.)

Mix walnuts, remaining 1/4 cup sugar and cinnamon. Put 2 tablespoons walnut-sugar filling in center of unfried side of each pancake, leaving about 3/4-inch edge around filling. Fold in half and pinch edges together firmly to seal, making half-circle shape. Drop each pancake into very hot oil and deep-fry 2 to 3 minutes, until pale golden color. Remove with perforated spoon. Dip in Aromatic Syrup and serve hot or cold. Makes 15.

Each serving contains about:

308 calories; 3 mg sodium; 0 cholesterol; 11 grams fat; 51 grams carbohydrates; 4 grams protein; 1 gram fiber; 33% calories from fat.

Aromatic Syrup

2 1/2 cups sugar

1 1/4 cups water

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 to 2 tablespoons orange blossom water or rose water

Dissolve sugar in water with lemon juice in saucepan. Simmer until thick enough to coat back of spoon. Stir in orange blossom water or rose water and simmer 2 minutes. Allow to cool, then chill in refrigerator. Makes about 2 cups.

There's a chapter on pancakes in "Bradley Ogden's Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner," but Ogden never uses the word. He calls his creations hotcakes, griddlecakes and flapjacks. No matter what you call them, these are delicious.

BRADLEY OGDEN'S BERRY FLAPJACKS

3/4 cup boysenberries or other berries, rinsed and drained

3 tablespoons sugar

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup whole-wheat flour

2 tablespoons buckwheat flour

1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 eggs, separated

1 1/3 cups milk

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Berries for garnish

Maple syrup

Lightly mash boysenberries in small bowl with 1 tablespoon sugar to make about 1/2 cup. Set aside.

Sift together remaining 2 tablespoons sugar with all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, buckwheat flour, baking powder and salt in large mixing bowl. Combine egg yolks, milk and melted butter in small bowl and stir to blend.

Make well in flour mixture and stir in egg mixture. Be careful not to overmix; batter should be somewhat lumpy. For more tender flapjacks, let batter rest 15 minutes.

Beat egg whites until stiff but not dry in small bowl. Fold egg whites into batter just until blended. Gently fold mashed berries into batter with 2 or 3 strokes. Berries and berry juice should be marbled through batter.

Grease griddle and place over medium heat until water droplets dance on surface. Pour 1/3 cup batter per pancake onto griddle and cook until puffed, full of bubbles and dry at edges, then turn and cook 1 minute longer. Top with few fresh berries and serve with maple syrup. Makes 1 dozen (5-inch) pancakes or 4 servings.

Each serving, without garnish or syrup, contains about:

662 calories; 473 mg sodium; 143 mg cholesterol; 35 grams fat; 80 grams carbohydrates; 11 grams protein; 1 gram fiber; 47% calories from fat.

A golden color and a slightly gritty texture from cornmeal, make these blueberry cornmeal pancakes unique. Pour syrup over them, or make dollar-size ones and serve with queso fresco.

CORNMEAL-BLUEBERRY PANCAKES

1 1/2 cups coarse yellow cornmeal

1/3 cup flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 egg

2 tablespoons maple syrup

1 1/2 tablespoons oil

2 cups low-fat buttermilk

1 2/3 cups blueberries

Mix cornmeal, flour, baking soda and salt in bowl. Whisk egg lightly in another bowl. Whisk in maple syrup, oil and buttermilk. Stir into flour mixture. Let stand 10 minutes.

Lightly grease griddle and place over medium heat. Ladle in batter, 1/4 cup per pancake, and sprinkle tops with blueberries. Cook until starting to bubble. Turn and cook until golden and dry on both sides. Serve with maple syrup. Makes 4 servings.

Each serving contains about:

399 calories; 298 mg sodium; 57 mg cholesterol; 9 grams fat; 69 grams carbohydrates; 11 grams protein; 1 gram fiber; 20% calories from fat.

"Ken Hom's East Meets West Cuisine," crosses a lot of culinary borders. These pancakes, for example, borrow ideas from both Asia and America.

EASTERN-FLAVORED SHRIMP PANCAKES (Adapted from Ken Hom's crab pancakes)

1 cup all-purpose unbleached flour

2 eggs

1 cup low-fat milk

1 to 1 1/2 cups cooked peeled shrimp (slice in halves, if large) or crab meat

1 tablespoon sesame oil

Salt

1 teaspoon minced peeled ginger

3 tablespoons chopped or fine-julienned green onions or chives

2 tablespoons lemon juice

Peanut oil for frying

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