Can you believe it’s already September? I can’t. While most of you are probably BBQ-ing and hanging by the pool, let me take a minute to talk about the last thing on your mind … pancakes!
My first thought was “Orange pancakes?” I mean, lemon, sure. Banana, of course. But orange? Never really thought about it, I guess. Shannon and I resolved not to tinker and forged ahead with the recipe.
So, when I gathered it all together to get started, I didn’t really know what to expect. Well, one sore arm and a lot of pancakes later, I can say I was a bit underwhelmed, to be honest. The original recipe yielded a batter that was much too thick to use for pancakes, not even remotely pourable and too thick to even spread.
I did, however, attempt to cook them anyway and ended up with a dense, dry pancake that was less than appetizing.
Gross, right? No thank you.
So, I added some extra buttermilk and orange juice to thin out the batter and make it more pourable, and then we were on our way! The pancakes (once corrected) had a great texture, light and fluffy and perfectly tender! However, they didn’t have much flavor, especially considering the copious amounts of orange juice and zest I knew were in the batter.
Topped with honey butter and maple syrup, however, the notes were somewhat floral with a hint of orange, but not nearly the ‘slap you in the face’ flavor I expected. Though I wouldn’t eat them on their own, once I topped them with syrup and butter it was hard to stop eating them.
What I liked:
- The texture, once corrected, was great! I love fluffy pancakes and these babies fit the bill just right!
- Honey butter perfectly complemented the pancakes and, along with the maple syrup, brought out the orange notes.
What I didn’t:
- The original recipe didn’t have nearly enough liquid in the batter, so I had to add extra orange juice and buttermilk to thin out the batter. I have not seen other complaints about this, though, so maybe I just had some weird blond moment…
- Despite ALL of the orange zest and juice in this recipe, the orange flavor wasn’t as strong as I expected. I expected a brighter flavor, although maybe it was muted by additional buttermilk.
- 8 ounces (225 g) unsalted European-style (cultured) butter, softened
- 3 tablespoons clover honey
- 2 cups (255 g) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup (240 ml) orange juice, freshly squeezed
- 1 cup (230 g) plain full-fat Greek yogurt, strained
- ½ cup (120 ml) buttermilk, well-shaken
- 4 ounces (1 stick/115 g) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons (25 g) granulated sugar
- 3 Tablespoons orange zest (from 2 oranges)
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- Maple syrup, preferably warmed
- Honey butter (recipe above)
- If your butter is very soft, you can just place it in a bowl with the honey and stir with a spatula until completely combined. Transfer to a small bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside or place in refrigerator for up to 1 week. (Hint: also great on dinner rolls, corn bread, toast, or anything else you might butter).
- If the butter is still somewhat firm, cut into cubes and place into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat the butter and honey on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 4 minutes. Scrape the honey butter into a ramekin to use immediately with the pancakes.
- If you want to make a lot of pancakes and keep them warm, preheat the oven to 200°F (90°C). Otherwise, you can skip this step.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt until combined.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the orange juice, yogurt, buttermilk, 4 ounces (115 g) of the butter, the eggs, sugar, and orange zest.
- Make a well in the dry ingredients, pour the wet ingredients into the well, stirring just until combined.
- If the batter is too thick, add additional orange juice until slightly thinned and pourable.
- Heat a large skillet or griddle over medium heat until water splashed on it bubbles and dances, but doesn't immediately evaporate.
- Brush the pan with some of the remaining 2 tablespoons of melted butter and pour 1?3 cup batter to the pan per pancake (you can use more or less, depending on what size of pancake you are looking for).
- Cook pancakes until bubbles form on the tops and the bottoms are browned.
- Flip and continue cooking them until they are completely browned on both sides, another minute or so.
- You don't have to butter each time, but you can if you like (I don't). Otherwise, continue buttering the pan and making pancakes until all the batter is used, transferring cooked pancakes to the oven to keep warm, if desired.
- Serve immediately as the pancakes are made, or keep them in the oven on a baking pan or heatproof plate just until you’ve cooked them all (don’t leave them in the oven longer).
- Serve with maple syrup and honey butter.
* The liquid as stated in this recipe was not enough for my batter, feel free to add extra liquid, a tablespoon or two at a time, until the batter becomes pourable. Be careful not to over-mix.
* I felt they could also use a bit more orange zest, but maybe my oranges just weren't super orange-y. Feel free to cook a mini 'test' pancake and see how the flavor is before continuing.
[ Get the book HERE ]
[ Check out Shannon’s post HERE ]