Weekend breakfasts are my favorite. It is time for whole family to bond and have fun together during a long, satisfying, delicious feast. Put the rush of the weekdays behind and it is time to enjoy life. The smell of freshly ground coffee beans, hot out-of-the-oven bread and newspaper, which has to be read first by me by the way, are must-haves. Of course it goes without saying that what make weekend breakfasts special are the delights you prepare otherwise you don’t have time to make during the week.
Among our favorites are crepes and pancakes at such brunchs. Most of the time I prefer crepes over pancakes because if it is not a GOOD pancake I feel like I’m just eating unnecessary dough whereas crepes are always thinner and stuffing-friendly. However, these just stole my heart or my stomach I must say.
These pancakes are incredibly fluffy due to beating egg whites seperately; and very tasty due to lemon and ricotta. Actually, this may sound silly but for the first time I thought pancakes are literally cakes . As English is my second language sometimes I just take words for granted and do not think the root of the meaning. But yes pancakes can be really tasty, flavorful cakes. So, since we’ve first tried this recipe we haven’t had crepes and we haven’t looked back. We’ve been having a lemon-ricotta pancake marathon for weeks!!
So, please treat yourself and family with these goodies this weekend!
Meyer Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
(adapted from Anne Burrell)
(makes 8-9 3-inch pancakes)
1 quart strawberries, topped and quartered
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup orange juice
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus a pinch for egg whites
1 heaping teaspoon baking powder
4 eggs, separated
1 heaping cup ricotta cheese
3/4 cup milk
2 Meyer lemons, zested and juiced (I used ordinary lemons)
Butter, for cooking the pancakes
Powdered sugar, for dusting
Toss the strawberries with the sugar and orange juice. Cover and let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.
After the berries and sugar have macerated and become very juicy, remove 1/2 of the berry mixture, put it in a food processor and puree until smooth. Return it to the rest of the berries and reserve until ready to use.
Sift together all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl. In another bowl, combine the egg yolks, ricotta, milk and lemon zest and juice, and mix until it becomes homogeneous. Make a well in the dry ingredients, add the wet ingredients to the well and whisk until combined.
Preheat a griddle.
In another bowl, using a whisk or electric mixer, beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt to stiff peaks. Fold the egg whites into the flour mixture in thirds. Do this quickly and gently so the pancakes will be light and fluffy.
Melt small pats of butter onto the preheated griddle, and spread it around with a paper towel to remove any excess butter. Spoon or ladle the pancake batter onto the prepared griddle to desired size of the pancake. When the top of the pancake is full of holes, like bubbles have risen to the surface and burst, the pancake is ready to flip. Flip the cakes and cook until the bottom is golden brown.
Remove the pancakes from the grill to serving plates. Top with the macerated strawberry coulis and garnish with powdered sugar.