Friday, January 21, 2011

Saturday Morning Banana Pecan Pancakes

My sister LOVES going to restaurants featured on Diners, Drive Ins and Dives when travelling.  Last summer, we found this cute little diner in Portland, OR called the Byways Cafe.  After receiving a few disgruntled looks by the local patrons when they saw 12 of us walking in (the joint only seats about 12!!), we took our spots and perused the menu.  Rob ordered Banana and Pecan Pancakes, and they WERE TO DIE FOR.  Seriously, it was a small pancake stack of heaven.  I have been trying to replicate it, and found this Tyler Florence recipe, which is the closest I have come.  This is perfect for lazy Saturday mornings, or "brinner" any night of the week.  Enjoy!

The original recipe is absolutely excellent, but to come close to what we ate The Byways Cafe, I used 1 C chopped pecans instead of 1/2 C of ground pecans.

Banana and Pecan Pancakes with Maple Butter
·         Yield: 6 servings

  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup pecans, toasted and finely ground (not chopped)
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 bananas, peeled and sliced in 1/4-inch circles
  • Maple Butter, recipe follows
  • Confectioners' sugar, to garnish
  • Candied Pecans, to garnish

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.
In a large mixing bowl whisk the buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla together so they are well combined. In a separate bowl mix the flour, baking powder, soda, salt, and sugar. Combine the wet ingredients with the dry and stir with a spoon to get rid of the lumps. Fold in the pecans, most of the melted butter and whisk until batter is smooth. Heat a griddle or skillet over medium low heat and swirl around a little melted butter to keep the pancakes from sticking. Using a ladle pour the batter into the pan, see Cook's note*
Cook the pancakes on 1 side until they are set and then lightly press the bananas into the batter. When small bubbles appear on the uncooked surface, flip the pancakes and cook until golden on both sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer pancakes to a warming plate in the oven while you make the rest.
To serve, slice the maple-honey butter, layer it between the stack of pancakes and place in the oven to melt for 1 1/2 minutes. Sprinkle with confectioner's sugar and candied pecans.
*Cook's note: The trick to perfect round pancakes is pouring all the batter in the same spot and letting it roll out to a complete circle.
Maple Butter:
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1/4 C maple syrup
2 T honey
1 piece parchment or greaseproof paper
In a mixing bowl, using a spatula mash the butter with the maple syrup and honey until well blended. Roll it up in the paper, like a tube and twist the ends. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Enjoy and live life with gusto!

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