I recently acquired a shiny new slow cooker. Woohoo! But Boston’s August humidity isn’t quite right for stew. I broke it in with a batch of yogurt instead.
Homemade nonfat yogurt tends to be runny, so I strain it to my preferred thickness. Straining yields a yellowish substance, similar to one that you may have seen pooling at the top of your own yogurt container. Remember Miss Muffet, and her curds and whey? Well, this slightly unpleasant-looking liquid is whey. But don’t let its appearance fool you – it contains proteins, vitamins, enzymes, electrolytes, and minerals!
I incorporated my whey into a scrumptious weekend breakfast. Using whey, along with whole grain flours, creates pancakes with a tender crumb and boosts their protein content. To sweeten these hearty flapjacks, I added ripe bananas and, before flipping each pancake, sprinkled it with raw sugar. When the sugared side hits the hot pan, it caramelizes, forming sweet crunchy pockets rather like the lovely topping on crème brûlée. No syrup required!
Burnt Sugar Banana Pancakes
1 cup white whole wheat flour (or 1/2 cup each all purpose and whole wheat flours)
1/2 cup buckwheat flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 1/4 cups whey (or milk)
2 eggs, beaten
2 tbsp. melted butter
1-2 ripe bananas, sliced
Raw sugar, to taste
In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, and salt. In another bowl, combine whey, eggs, and melted butter. Add the liquid to the dry ingredients and stir just until combined.
Heat a skillet or griddle over medium. For pancakes, I usually go with a medium high flame, but this batter is heavy, so I had better results with lower heat. Spray or butter the pan as you like. Ladle in your batter, about 1/4 cup at a time, and top with banana slices. When the edges are cooked and bubbles begin to form on the surface, sprinkle generously with raw sugar and flip. Cook until pancakes are done and the sugar is nice and caramelized; serve.