Pineapple season has replaced mango season in our part of western Mexico. Our state of Nayarit produces golden, juicy Esperanza pineapples and trucks come down the street every week, beeping their horns and announcing their sales by loud speakers. I have to run out our gate quickly before they have moved on, and hope it really is the pineapple man and not the man who wants to buy scrap metal, or the guy selling roasted corn sprinkled with chile powder and lime juice, or the man who sharpens knives.
We buy six at a time, lop off the tops and refrigerate them, eating one a day between the two of us. Picked ripe, they are incredibly sweet and help us make the transition from the season of unlimited local mangoes to the months of none. Pineapple pancakes are one of our favorite ways to eat this drippy, sweet fruit. As the pancake cooks, the pineapple slice becomes almost molten, the sugar starts to caramelize and I can barely remember how crazy I was about mangoes just a short month ago.
Molten Pineapple Pancakes
- 6 fresh pineapple slices, about 1/4″ (.65 mm.) thick
- 1 cup (240 ml.) whole wheat flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 cup (1.77 ml.) buttermilk
- 1/4 cup ( .60 ml.) milk, plus extra if batter is too thick
- 2 tablespoon (.30 ml.) melted butter
- 1 large egg
- Slice pineapple, removing core if too tough. Pre-heat griddle over medium heat.
- Blend dry ingredients in a medium-sized bowl with a fork.
- In a second bowl, whisk melted butter with egg. Whisk in buttermilk and milk.
- Pour wet ingredients all at once — not gradually — into flour mixture, blending quickly with a whisk only until no dry flour can be seen. Small lumps are OK. Be careful not to over-mix.
- Brush vegetable oil on heated griddle. To test if it is hot enough, spatter drops of water across its surface by flicking your fingers. The drops should skip and dance across the griddle.
- Using only one hand (keep your other hand clean for picking up a spatula or plate), dip slices of pineapple into the batter, coating both sides, and place on the griddle.
- Cook 3-5 minutes per side, or until each side is a deep, golden color. Serve hot with butter and honey or agave syrup.
Without fruit, this recipe makes excellent whole wheat pancakes. Or stir blueberries, sliced banana or walnuts into the batter.
For any batter using baking powder and baking soda, a minimum of mixing is crucial. Otherwise, gluten develops and the result is not as tender.
Use organic ingredients if available. This recipe used homemade butter made from raw cream and real buttermilk, a by-product of butter making.
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