Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Banana, Dark Chocolate Chip, Honey Corncakes

These pancakes are probably the best that I have ever made! They had a great grainy texture from the addition of cornmeal, a sweet floral flavor from the bananas and local buckwheat honey and a great slightly bitter and decadent chocolaty bite from Callebaut dark chocolate chips, they were divine! My two year old daughter ate an entire cake to herself, she never eats like that...the true test of a recipe:  if the toddler wolfs it down you know its good! I love to add interesting grains or flours to my pancakes, that way you get a variety of nutrients and health benefits, rather than just using all purpose flour. The cornmeal is coarse and creates a cake that has a little "tooth" to it which I really liked, almost like eating a pancake that is filled with tiny crunchy nuts. I had some cream of wheat pancakes at a late night diner one time and these reminded me of those, I really loved them. I topped these corncakes very simply with Earth Balance and locally made maple syrup, they were so sweet from the honey and banana you need very little syrup, perfection!

I always make a very large batch or double batch of pancakes on the days that I make them. I like to make them from scratch and it takes time, so why not make a bunch all at once and then easily heat them up later on. My secret for having leftover pancakes that heat up and taste just like they came off the griddle is simple: freeze them in individual servings, pop them frozen right into your toaster or toaster oven and toast till they are warmed through, you might have to push them down twice. They will come out crispy on the outside and still soft and cakey on the inside, and you don't need extra butter so it saves on the calories too! You can do this with pancakes right out of the fridge too, they just won't need as long to toast. They are also portable; top them with jam, apple butter or a little honey, roll them up wrap some parchment paper around the bottom for drips and be on your way with a healthy breakfast on the go you can feel good about! Its cooking that kids can easily do for themselves, just teach them how to operate the toaster.

This recipe makes 6 to 8 medium size cakes, make a double batch and freeze them for later in the week when you don't have time to make a hot breakfast, but want one.


1/2 Cup Unbleached, organic, all purpose flour, I use a locally milled one, of NY wheat.
1/2 Cup organic cornmeal, I use a local one.
3 Tbsp Buckwheat honey, its very dark in color and has a molasses-esque flavor, I use Rulison.
1 tsp Baking powder
1/2 tsp Baking soda
1/4 tsp Sea salt
1 Cup buttermilk, you can put a Tbsp of vinegar in your milk and let sit for 5 mins if you don't have buttermilk.
1 Very ripe, fair trade banana, mashed.
1 Farm raised egg
2 Tbsp Earth Balance, melted, you can substitute butter or canola oil.
6 to 8 Tbsp fair trade, dark chocolate chips, a Tbsp for each corncake, I use Callebaut.
6 to 8 tsp of Earth balance or butter, to cook each cake.
Earth balance or butter & maple syrup for topping the corncakes when they are done.


Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F and place a baking sheet in the oven to warm.

In a large bowl, mix the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and sea salt, whisk to break up any lumps.

In a medium bowl mix honey, buttermilk, egg, banana and Earth balance. Mix to combine and add wet to dry and stir just to incorporate, do not over mix!

Heat up a cast iron skillet or non-stick skillet over medium low heat. Add in a tsp of Earth balance or butter, allow to melt and then ladle (about 1/3 of a cup) of the batter into the pan. Sprinkle with the dark chocolate chips evenly over the cake. Cook till the edges are dry and there are tiny bubbles on the surface. Flip and cook for a few minutes on the opposite side. Remove from the pan and into the preheated oven to keep warm. Repeat for the remaining batter.

To serve; top the warm cakes with Earth balance and maple syrup, and enjoy the best pancakes ever!

Pancakes are always a special occasion at my house, make your family feel special by whipping some up for them! Come back and let me know what you think!

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