Pancakes are a quick bread that are traditional in many homes, especially where there are children. It's a regular practice for families to have pancakes for breakfast on Saturday mornings. For some families, as it was with my family, pancake day was every Sunday. Of course, pancakes aren't just reserved for breakfast! They make a fast and satisfying dinnertime treat, too. Here in the southeast, pancake suppers are used for fundraisers in schools, fire departments and churches.
One favorite pancake variation is the blueberry pancake. If you enjoy this type of pancake, then this Monday, January 28, will give you a great reason to enjoy them, since it's "National Blueberry Pancake Day". This will give you a golden opportunity to celebrate the blueberry pancake! If Monday mornings are hectic, like most everyone's is on Monday, gather the family together that night and enjoy some for a special Monday night supper. (Incidentally, did you know that the average person spends only four minutes eating breakfast?)
Driscoll's, the marketers of fresh fruits, is promoting this interesting day, and they have shared some surprising facts about pancakes:
-Pancakes have featured in cookbooks since 1439.
- The French pancake is called a crêpe. It is thin and crispy and often served with sweet or savory fillings.
- Blinis are pancakes from Russia that are served with caviar and sour cream or folded over and filled with cream cheese or jam!
- The world’s largest pancake was cooked in Rochdale in 1994. It was 15 meters in diameter and had an estimated 2 million calories
- Ralf Laue holds the world’s pancake tossing record. He flipped a pancake 416 times in just two minutes!
How's that for some pancake trivia! Since we're talking about using blueberries in our pancakes, here's some good-to-know information about fresh blueberries:
- With just 80 calories per cup and virtually no fat, blueberries offer many noteworthy nutritional benefits.
- According to nutrition expert, Tina Ruggiero, M.S., R.D., L.D., blueberries, as part of a healthy diet and exercise plan, help reduce risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as the accumulation of belly fat.
- According to the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, laboratory studies show a diet including blueberries may improve motor skills and reverse the short-term memory loss that comes with aging or age-related diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
Now that we know more about pancakes and blueberries, let's make a special blueberry pancake! The recipe I'm passing along, which came from Driscoll's, is for "Blueberry Whole Wheat Pancakes". This is a healthy recipe and don't let the word "healthy" discourage you from trying this recipe....they are great pancakes! Whole wheat flour certainly will give a nutritional boost to these pancakes and will make them hearty and filling so that you'll feel full for several hours and not have to go snacking later on!
Serve these with your favorite syrup, confectioner's sugar, butter and/or honey. Bacon or sausage is a must when you have pancakes, and if you would like a heartier pancake meal, serve eggs with them. Add milk, juice, hot chocolate or coffee, and you're meal is all set to be enjoyed!
If you'd like more information about Driscoll's and their fruits, as well as some recipes that they've developed with their products, just go to this link:
Meanwhile, designate some good family time with a pancake breakfast or supper, using the following recipe:
BLUEBERRY WHOLE WHEAT PANCAKES
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/4 cups natural sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoons salt
2 cups low-fat buttermilk
2 large eggs
1/2 cup low-fat margarine, melted
2 packages (6 ounces each) Driscoll's Blueberries, plus more for garnish if desired
Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl until well combined. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, whisk together buttermilk with eggs. Using a wooden spoon, stir egg mixture into flour mixture just until combined. Add melted margarine and blueberries and stir gently.
Preheat oven to 200°F. Heat a nonstick griddle or skillet over medium heat. Let a few drops of cold water fall on the surface. If water bounces, sputters and instantly evaporates, griddle is ready. Pour 1/4 cup batter onto the skillet. Cook 2 minutes, or until bubbles that appear on the surface begin to break and the bottom is golden. Flip pancake and cook 1 minute longer or until lightly golden. Place pancakes on a heatproof platter and keep warm in oven. Repeat with remaining batter. Garnish with additional blueberries if desired. Yield: about 6-7 servings.