dressing up pancakes

I am a big believer in big breakfasts. I like refills of coffee and side orders. I like spending so much time with breakfast that morning turns to afternoon. I like breakfasts with friends at home and breakfasts alone with newspapers at local diners and cafes.

Pancakes are a clear favourite. Shortly after I shared my classic pancake recipe I noticed that Mark Bittman wrote an article in the New York Time titled "For Whole-Grain Pancakes, Try a Little Tenderness". This article really raises the bar when it comes to making pancakes. He included recipes for Bulgur-Ricotta Packages, Cornmeal Pancakes with Vanilla and Pine Nuts, and Cardamom-Scented Oatmeal Pancakes with Apricots and Almonds. Wow. I was inspired and came up with my own spiffed up version: Sweet Potato and Coconut Pancakes. I will always love classic pancakes, but it is fun - and often delicious - to experiment with classics now and then.

Sweet Potato and Coconut Pancakes


1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
a pinch of ground nutmeg, or cinnamon, or both
a pinch of sea salt
1 small sweet potato (1/2 to 2/3 cup)
1 egg
1/2 tbsp oil
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp coconut milk
oil, or coconut oil for frying

Peel and cube the sweet potato. Cook in boiling water until tender. Drain water and mash well. Because pancakes should be smooth, make sure that the sweet potato is also smooth. In the meantime, mix together the flours, baking powder, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt. In another bowl, mix together mashed sweet potato, coconut milk, egg and oil. Add the dry mix to the wet mix and stir until combined. The batter should be thick, but add more coconut milk or a splash of other milk if necessary. Heat a heavy frying pan over medium-high heat. Once pan is hot add oil or coconut oil and distribute across the pan. Spoon batter into the pan and cook until each side of the pancake is golden. Serve with lots of butter, maple syrup and fresh fruit. Blackberries and bananas both taste delicious with the sweet potato.


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