Monday, August 5, 2013

Pour Some Vegan on Me - Pancakes (conversion)


Living in a world that would like you to be gluten free can be hard and depressing. (if you ask me) One of my culinary loves are the age old staple known as pancakes. PANCAKES! They make the sun rise and set, and are the perfect backdrop for amazing childhood memories:

Remember how we used to have pancakes every sunday?

Sure do little buddy... sure do!

When I grew up we went out and bought your "pre-made" box of "just add milk and eggs" pancakes mix. And this tradition carried on through my 20s, until I became vegan. Becoming more self aware of what I was (and am) putting into my body - I began the quest for the ultimate pancake recipe.  The quest went on for many years, and, sadly, hundreds of unsavory pancakes had been consumed, when I found... "Fallon's Cucina: Light n' Fluffy Pancakes".  Did I seek out a healthy living website with the intent of finding a healthy "vegan" pancake recipe? No. No, I did not. I googled "Trader Joe's Pancake Recipe" and BOOM this is the top site on the search engine list - so I check it out.

A long time ago I stopped merely searching "Vegan Recipes" because I can't afford to cook/bake as the recipes require. I can't afford a pantry filled with soy flour, almond meal, kamut flour (and I don't even know what that is). Don't get me wrong, I'm not sitting here judging others who have these items on their shelves, I'm only saying that on my budget - the are a no go. So I look for non-vegan recipes, and convert them to vegan, my own way.


And Fallon's Cucina: Light n' Fluffy Pancakes is the perfect example of this!

What you will need: 

-1 1/2 cups AP flour

-3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

-1 teaspoon baking soda

-3/4 teaspoon salt

-*2 tablespoon sugar (Florida Crystals are certified Vegan) [I add extra sugar]

-1 1/4 cups soy milk with half a lemon - This is "vegan" Butter milk. If you don't use soy, use Oat, or some other vegan milk that has fat in it. Rice milk is thin, and will not curdle up when you squeeze the lemon into it. 

-1 1/2 teaspoons egg replacer (don't make the "egg", just put the powder into the mix)

-3 tablespoons vegan butter, melted (I use soy free Earth Balance)

-1 teaspoon vanilla extract

-Pancake griddle, griddle pan, or frying pan used especially for pancakes. (Because nothing tastes worst than an onion and peppered flavored blueberry/strawberry pancake.)

First things first:

Heat griddle or pan. If you're using your stove top, set the flame to low. Any higher and you'll burn the pancakes. 

As it heats:



Make your "butter milk"


You will want to stir this mixture prior to adding it to your batter. Make it first, set it aside, and allow the citric acid to mingle with the creamy soy milk. Thicker is better.

Next:


In a bowl, or the bowl of your stand alone mixer - add the Four, Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Sugar, Salt, Egg Replacer  - use the Whisk attachment, and blend it all together. As it blends:


Melt your butter in the microwave - 30 seconds should do it.

Then:

With the mixer on, add the Butter Milk mixture, melted butter, and 1 teaspoon of Vanilla. Whip the mixture until smooth. 

As it's "whipping till smooth" - choose what delicious berries you'd like to add to the mix.


Chop up your strawberries into little bit sizes, and rinse them and your blueberries. (Whatever fruit you use, make sure their bit sized. It makes it much easier to eat in the long run. And always rinse them. Even if they're organic.)

Remove Whisk attachment, and add fruit.


Use a wooden spoon, or a plastic spatula to FOLD the fruit into the batter. Don't use the Whisk, or you'll pulverize the fruit. It won't be pretty. 

NOW! 

Using a ladle, or a large serving spoon, pour batter onto preheated griddle. 


When the edges of the pancake appear dry, and bubbles begin to form in the batter - it's time to flip!


Allow to cook on the other side for 45 seconds to a minute. On the second side you can check. Oh, and these are thick, fluffy pancakes, so you may want to smush them down with your spatula to be sure any of the raw batter inside leaks out allowing the pancake to cook all the way through.

And then... REPEAT, until you have a stack that looks like this...


Once you're pancakes are done, feel free to top with more Earth Balance Butter, and some delicious REAL maple syrup. (You can buy organic maple syrup at Target these days. It's a bit up there in price, but worth it in the long run. Seriously, if you're trying to be healthy - Maple Syrup has one ingredients in it - and that other stuff - ten. TEN ingredients. Just stick with the one.)

I would like to take a moment to tip my syrup to Fallon (of Fallon's Cucina) for the best pancake recipe I've had the privilege of veganizing. YUM-tacular. 

Becoming vegan can be hard, but unless you're trying to Veganize Beef Wellington - Veganizing Recipes is rather easy. Find the recipes you like, and mix it up. We're lucky enough to live in a time where subsitutions can be made. So, why not!

Happy eating!!

[if you have a recipe you'd like me to veganize, email it to me with "Veganize this, Please!" in the subject line!]

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