I'm a texture girl. When I find a bit of sand, I like to rub my finger against it. I crave nuts in my brownies. Hard crusts on my baguette. I like the skin that forms on homemade pudding.
So imagine my delight when my husband's mother sent us a box of Samoas Girl Scout cookies when we were in the Peace Corps. Samoas, with their chocolaty, caramelly, coconutty goodness. Their texture!
Against my better judgment, we shared a cookie with Mehari, our Tigrinya teacher, so he could experience the pleasure of an iconic American treat. He chewed it. Seemed to enjoy it, too, at least for a minute. But suddenly he started spitting on the floor. Ptheh! Ptheh! What the hell was he doing?
Turns out he didn't embrace the texture of coconut. "I think there's packing material in this," he complained, obviously dismayed.
I was not pleased.
Anyway, on to pancakes. I love a standard, uniformly fluffy pancake, but a pancake with a little textural interest adds an unexpected and (dare I suggest?) welcome twist.
Recipe for Lightly Seeded Pancakes
Here's a little variation on your standard, fluffy pancakes. This version is still pouffy and impossibly light, but seeds add textural interest as well as a delicate undernote of flavor. I used toasted sesame seeds, but feel free to experiment with whole flax seeds, poppy seeds, or even hemp seeds (available at natural foods stores) if you like.
Makes 14 pancakes
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds (often in the Asian foods aisle rather than the spice isle), or seeds of your choice
2 tablespoons medium-grind cornmeal
1-1/2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup plain yogurt (I used European-style fat-free)
1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon milk (fat-free works well)
1-1/2 tablespoons canola oil
butter, maple syrup, and fresh berries, for serving
In a medium bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients (flour through salt). In a second medium bowl, whisk egg, yogurt, milk, and oil. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients, and whisk lightly until combined. Use a rubber spatula to scrape the bottom of the bowl and make sure the batter is uniformly moistened.
Heat a cast-iron griddle or skillet over medium-high heat until drops of water sizzle then evaporate. Coat with non-stick spray.
Use an ice cream scoop to dollop the batter onto the hot griddle. Cook 2 minutes on one side, flip, and cook about a minute on the second side, or until nicely browned and cooked through.
Serve hot with butter, syrup, and fresh berries.