Sunday, 20 November 2011

Punkin' Pancakes

Frittelle Piccolini di Colazione di Biscotti di Zenzero, Zucca e Menta
Mini Gingersnap, Pumpkin and Mint Breakfast-Pancakes 

I know- all of my sweet dishes are just improvised "not really cooking or baking in the real sense of the word" creations. But don't be too hard on me- because like it or not- they taste pretty good! They are easy to make, will please you and your guests... and how much more do you want? I would say that's not a bad deal all things considered!

So this morning I decided I was going to make pancakes. I have still got 3/4 of a Hokkaido pumpkin in the fridge. I still have that packet of ginger-snaps that I bought. Actually, the cookies that I have are German spiced cookies called "Spekulatius", which you only get at Christmas time- I love them! They remind me of the "ginger biscuits" we used to have in England when I was growing up... and nostalgia is a GREAT ingredient in any dish as we all know!

Anyway, let me tell you how I made them! I crumbled up the cookies and poured milk over them. I let them sit for 3-4 minutes, until they were soft and then whisked them until I had a smooth and creamy paste. I then cut off a chunk of pumpkin and grated it finely. I would say I had a cupful of pumpkin, a cupful of "cookie-cream"- and to this mix I added 1 egg. I jazzed up the mixture with a little cinnamon, a pinch of salt, a dusting of grated nutmeg and maybe 1 teaspoon of very finely chopped mint. I then added a tablespoon of baking powder and went about heating up my frying pan- you see, at this point, I had licked the spoon I had been using to stir the mix together and knew that good things lay ahead...

I noticed after making the first trial pancake, that this mix does remain very soft in the pan- and quickly realized I would be better off making smaller sized pancakes. So in a very lightly greased pan (I used clarified butter- which is my favorite as it doesn't brown or burn and can be heated much higher than regular butter), I made little pancakes, which were just one tablespoonful of batter at a time. Yes, they ARE delicate to flip in the pan- the best way, is to lift one edge with a spatula, lift it, and use your hand to hold it up a little so you can get the spatula further below the pancake- then over it goes! It may take a bit of practice- but you want fluffy pancakes, right?  Then the batter is going to be soft! I suppose in retrospect, you COULD finish them under the broiler- but I wasn't smart enough to think of that this morning- I think I will do next time though! Now there's a bit of honesty and a good tip for ya!

I served mine up with a dusting of powdered sugar- which was just for appearances sakes and with a drizzle of honey- which was for the sake of some extra yumminess! I chose not to use maple syrup- I wanted a slightly different taste to regular pancakes- obviously! And the mint and pumpkin and gingersnap flavor, along with the added spice, did the trick just nicely! Sadly, mine were just lukewarm by the time I had taken these photo's for you... but I DID sneak one before I got started- and I recommend you get your serving while it's hot!

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