Caught a rain storm with my cell phone earlier in the summer,turn it up, you can hear thunder.
The temperature dipped considerably last night and we’ve had a steady rain for most of the day. Suddenly pancakes sounds delicious. But not just any pancakes. I wanted whole wheat pancakes. They are fluffy, hearty, nutty and sweet, and that sounded just right.
Making whole wheat pancakes can be tricky – I don’t want them to be heavy and dry, I still want light and fluffy. The recipe below serves that up:
Fluffy Whole Wheat Pancakes
Beat together until light and frothy:
- 1 egg
- 1 cup milk
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup unbleached flour
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 4 tbsp buttermilk powder
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
Whisk dry ingredients into wet ingredients until just moistened, batter will be lumpy. Ladle into a hot, well oiled skillet or griddle. [Reduce heat to medium after it has heated up because these brown quickly.]
While with white flour pancakes you’d wait to see bubbles on the top of pancakes to flip them, you don’t want to do that with these. As soon as the bottom is golden, flip. And as soon as the bottom is again golden, remove.
This keeps them from being too dry. It’s a bit of a balancing act – you want to make sure they aren’t runny, but you also don’t want to over cook. As soon as the center bounces back they are ready to remove.
Top with butter and real maple syrup. Yum.
It was the perfect dinner tonight.
Geez there’s a day for everything. Time to celebrate National Fried Chicken Day.
How about an easier fried chicken recipe that doesn’t require a big vat of oil?
This recipe is from America’s Test Kitchen (includes instructional video):
Easier Fried Chicken
- 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
- Table salt
- Dash hot sauce
- 3 teaspoons ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 3 1/2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken parts (breasts, thighs, and drumsticks, or a mix, with breasts cut in half), trimmed of excess fat (see note)
- 2cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2teaspoons baking powder
- 1 3/4cups vegetable oil
- Whisk 1 cup buttermilk, 1 tablespoon salt, hot sauce, 1 teaspoon black pepper, ¼ teaspoon garlic powder, ¼ teaspoon paprika, and pinch of cayenne together in large bowl. Add chicken and turn to coat. Refrigerate, covered, at least 1 hour or up to overnight.
- Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Whisk flour, baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt, and remaining 2 teaspoons black pepper, ¾ teaspoon garlic powder, ¾ teaspoon paprika, and remaining cayenne together in large bowl. Add remaining ¼ cup buttermilk to flour mixture and mix with fingers until combined and small clumps form. Working with 1 piece at a time, dredge chicken pieces in flour mixture, pressing mixture onto pieces to form thick, even coating. Place dredged chicken on large plate, skin side up.
- Heat oil in 11-inch straight-sided sauté pan over medium-high heat to 375 degrees. Carefully place chicken pieces in pan, skin side down, and cook until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Carefully flip and continue to cook until golden brown on second side, 2 to 4 minutes longer. Transfer chicken to wire rack set in rimmed baking sheet. Bake chicken until instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of chicken registers 160 degrees for breasts and 175 for legs and thighs, 15 to 20 minutes. (Smaller pieces may cook faster than larger pieces. Remove pieces from oven as they reach -correct temperature.) Let chicken rest 5 minutes before serving.
If the video link above has expired, try this one: Easier Fried Chicken, America’s Test Kitchen
Originally published August 2010
As the last hot days of summer descend, thought another cold soup would be nice. Off to the movies and lunch. Oh, yeah and then to the farm stand for ingredients! The fun of this soup is you mix the two colors separately and then swirl them together in individual bowls. Let your artist loose.
Cucumber and Tomato Cold Soup
- ½ bunch cilantro*
- ¼ onion
- ¼ cup limejuice
- ¼ cup buttermilk
- ¼ cup sour cream
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp pepper
- 5 large cucumbers, peeled, halved and seeded
- 1 jalapeno
- 1 large tomato, quartered
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro for garnish
Large serving bowl, blender/food processor
Place all ingredients but jalapeno and tomato into food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Pour into serving bowl. Next blend together tomato and jalapeno. Pour into the center top of cucumber mixture and swirl outward with a knife, to create a decorative effect. Serve with cilantro for garnish.
* if you hate cilantro, omit, substitute parsley or some chives.
The other day on another blog, someone mentioned making chicken patties. There were some questions about the recipe, so I went and took a look. It sounded great and I thought, I should make that. But when I went to make it, remembered it called for ground, cooked chicken and thought, eh, too much work. I prefer a chicken breast cutlet with a crisp, spicy crust, anyway. So I decided to play with ingredients to come up with something that made me feel guilty eating it. All spicy and crispy. This what I came up with:
Crispy Chicken Breast Sandwiches
- 4 large boneless-skinless chicken breasts
- 1 cup dill pickle juice
- 1 egg (if you’re going to bake, add 1 tbsp of olive oil to egg)
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup panko
- 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
- Olive oil
- 1 tsp of salt
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried marjoram
- 2 tsp dried sage
- 2 tsp dry basil
- 2 tsp of celery seeds
- 1 tsp of black pepper
- 1/2 to 1 tsp cayenne powder
- 2 tsp onion powder
- 2 tsp of paprika
- 8 crusty sesame sandwich rolls
- Tomato slices
- Dill pickle (or for extra spice, jalapenos – my choice)
Fillet breasts to make two thin fillets from each breast and then soak in pickle juice for 30 minutes. Transfer chicken to buttermilk and let marinate for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, mix together panko, bread crumbs and spice mix. Beat egg.
Remove chicken from buttermilk mixture, dip in egg and then dredge in breadcrumb mixture, coating well. Fry in skillet with 1-2 tbsp of oil, turning until golden brown on both sides. Or alternately, bake at 375 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes. (I covered it for the first 10-15 minutes to keep it moist, then uncovered to get it crispy).
Serve with sandwich fixin’s.
Cooked fillets can be frozen and reheated in the oven at 450 degrees until heated through.
Update: It took me a while, but I found the video archive of the show if you want a step-by-step on the chicken.
Worked from home a few days ago and caught an old episode of America’s Test Kitchen. They tested out different batter fried chicken and this one was deemed the best. Thought I would share. I changed up the soaking method because we were discussing uses for leftover buttermilk last night and I recommended soaking chicken in it.
Halve breasts crosswise and separate leg quarters into thighs and drumsticks. and soak in the brine. You want all pieces to be similar in size so they fry evenly. Best results when using a dutch oven and thermometer.
- 1 quart cold buttermilk
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 4-5lbs bone-in, skin-on chicken, legs, thighs and breasts
Whisk water, salt, and sugar in large bowl until sugar and salt dissolve. Add chicken and refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 1 hour.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 5 teaspoons pepper
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (adjust if you don’t like as spicy)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 3/4 cups cold water
- 3 quarts peanut or vegetable oil
Whisk dry ingredients in large bowl, add water and whisk until smooth. Refrigerate batter, covered, while chicken is brining.
Heat oil to 350 degrees and keep the temperature between 300 and 325 degrees during frying process. Cook 4 pieces of the chicken until golden brown and white meat registers 160 degrees (170 degrees for dark meat), 12 to 15 minutes. Drain chicken on wire rack. Bring oil back to 350 degrees and repeat with remaining chicken.
Note: The batter is very thin, but cooks up to a nice crisp crust, partly due to the baking powder and water.
Here is the original Brine recipe:
- 1 quart cold water
- 1/4 cup salt
- 1/4 cup sugar