Add zest to your pancake stack with scrumptious innovation

Ellie Newell

Illustration: Ruth Hwang

I think sometimes the pancake is the unsung hero of breakfast. As ubiquitous as the greasy spoon, to non-dairy creamer and weak coffee, I think many people bypass the short stack of buttermilk flapjacks in lieu of her fancier cousins, french toast and Belgian waffles. “You can get pancakes any old place,” we think, and then order two pounds of mediocre hash browns.

But pancakes are more than the bumpkin of breakfast. Your everyday basic pancake, drizzled with maple syrup, is never going to disappoint. And that’s not taking into account all the delicious pancake variations. They can be filled with banana slices and chopped pecans, pumpkin purée and cinnamon, diced apples or blueberries, or slathered with warm applesauce. And then there are the tidy stacks of silver dollars, or the great lumbering things, extending beyond the borders of the plate (I’m currently re-thinking my vegetable-laden dinner plans just thinking about it).

Here’s a recipe for Strawberry Orange Pancakes that I’ve adopted from the 1981 “Better Homes and Gardens” cookbook. You’ll want to wash your oranges really well before zesting them, otherwise you can end up with a waxy chemical flavor. At the end, you’ll have oranges simply pleading to be made into fresh-squeezed juice––the perfect compliment to this yummy recipe!

Mix one and a half cups flour, a spoonful of white sugar, and two tablespoons baking powder in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, combine one egg, one cup milk, and a spoonful of canola oil. Zest one or two oranges––depending on how orangey you are feeling––dice about five strawberries, and add the fruit to the liquid mixture. Make a depression in your dry ingredients and add the wet ingredients, mixing well to avoid flour pockets. Heat a frying pan on medium, adding a dab of butter when the pan is hot. Drop spoonfuls of batter on your pan, and flip when medium sized bubbles form in the center of the pancake. You’ll probably need to re-butter your pan after every batch or so. Serve hot with maple syrup. ¡Buen provecho!