I am a huge sucker for pancakes. Really, I like almost any brunch food. Omelettes, waffles, a good french toast, crepes…I’m happy to eat them all. But given a choice, I’ll nearly always opt for pancakes. In the last few weeks, it seems like pancakes have been on the brain. The New York Times, for instance, published several recipes for “international” pancakes a few weeks ago, all of which I promptly filed away with plans for future meals. And right around the same time I happened to stumble across a new blog (or new to me, at least) Cooking with Amy on which I found this recipe for lemon cottage cheese pancakes. It seemed like a perfect easy start to an Easter morning, so we whipped up a batch last Sunday.
When Dylan, the grudging official pancake flipper of our household, saw the batter, he looked horrified at the small quantity. The recipe said it made seven pancake and served two but the batter looked seriously minimal. What we didn’t realize, as he started preparing eggs to make the meal a bit heartier, is that these are some serious pancakes. The cottage cheese makes them unusually heavy and dense and really, they reminded me more of blintzes than ordinary pancakes. So that even though the batch only made seven tiny pancakes, they were much more filling than you’d think by just looking at them.
In general, I prefer a lighter, fluffier pancake, but what was truly exceptional about these pancakes was the wonderful lemon flavor. As we prepared the batch, we kept the finished ones under a bowl to keep them warm and every time I lifted it to put another underneath, a glorious lemon scent wafted through the kitchen. The taste was just as good and was perfect with just a little powdered sugar on top- no need for syrups, which would mask that lemony essence. Next time, we are going to try to adapt the recipe to keep that flavor and some of the creaminess of the cottage cheese while making the overall pancake a little less dense.
And finally, did anyone notice that the pancakes bear an uncanny resemblance to lemons themselves? Pretty amazing, even if my beloved pancake flipper swears it was unintentional.
Lemon cottage cheese pancakes (make 7 small pancakes, approximately 2 servings)
1 lemon, both grated peel and juice
1 egg, separated
1/4 Cup powdered sugar
1/2 Cup cottage cheese (I used lowfat)
1 Tablespoon oil (mild-flavored such as canola)
1/2 Cup flour
1. Combine the lemon juice, peel, egg yolk, sugar, cottage cheese and oil. Mix in the flour.
2. Beat the egg whites until they form soft peaks. (Note: unless you double or triple the recipe, you probably can’t use your Kitchenaid to whip up such a small batch of egg whites). Fold the whites into the batter.
3. Spoon onto a greased skillet and cook until bubbles appear, then flip gently and continue cooking until golden on the bottom.