Thursday, September 30, 2010
With the remnants of Tropical Storm Nicole hovering over the DC area today, we're in smack the midst of a drenching, dripping kind of day. The kind of day where staying home and curling up with a good book sounds really nice right about now. Too bad life with five kids rarely allows for that kind of indulgence, so instead I'll settle for these thick autumn inspired pancakes to warm me up on my way out into the soggy world. They were the perfect whole grain breakfast treat to keep us warm and cozy on this drippy day and the maple-cream cheese topping accented them with a nice creamy element. Now I just need to find my umbrella....
3 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
2 Tbs. maple syrup
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
1 cup shredded carrot
1-1/2 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1-1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground allspice
1/4 tsp. salt
1-1/2 cups milk
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
Directions: To make the spread: In a medium bowl, stir together the cream cheese, maple syrup, and cinnamon until blended and smooth. Set aside. Makes 1/3 cup.
To make the pancakes: Preheat the oven 300°. Spread the walnuts on a baking sheet and toast until fragrant (about 5 minutes). Chop the nuts and set aside.
Meanwhile, place the carrot in a small microwaveable bowl. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and microwave on high power for 1 minute or just until tender. Set aside to cool.
In a large bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, baking powder, cinnamon, allspice, salt, and walnuts until blended. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Add the milk, sugar, eggs, and oil and whisk the ingredients together until blended. Add the cooled carrot and stir just until blended. If batter is too thick, additional milk can be added a tablespoon at a time.
Preheat a large nonstick skillet or griddle over medium-high heat and coat with cooking spray. Ladle 1/4 cup batter for each pancake and cook until bubbles form on the surface. Flip with spatula and cook for 1 minute longer, or until cooked through and golden brown. To serve, spoon a rounded teaspoon of the maple cream cheese spread on each pancake and drizzle with additional maple syrup, if desired. Makes 12-14 pancakes.