Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Whey pancakes and Grade B syrup

I drove behind this truck in late March. Oh, New Hampshire.
I am now the kind of person who makes pancakes out of the whey that’s leftover from home cheese making. I’m eagerly waiting for my hipster card to arrive in the mail.

My inability to dump a perfectly viable food down the drain sent me on a Google search for whey recipes that didn’t involve whey protein powder and promises of bulging neck muscles. (Naturally, my largely cheese- and chocolate-based diet has already given me a rock-hard physique).

I found these whey pancakes from King Arthur Flour, and to make them even stranger, I added some green food coloring in honor of St. Patrick’s Day. Alarmingly, Chloe was totally willing to eat green food without question, which is something we’ll have to work on.

The pancakes came out tasty and super moist, even if they did look like little green alien Frisbees. The only issue: I didn’t sift the flour and baking soda together, but just dumped it into the bowl and stirred—children crying wildly that they're starving can make you do wacky things. This oversight resulted in an icky, crunching lump of baking soda in two of the bites. I didn’t know my mouth was capable of twisting into such a wretched shape, but that’s what an unexpected hit of a baking soda landmine will do to you.

Speaking of maple syrup (OK, we weren't, but c'mon, pancakes), last weekend was New Hampshire Maple Weekend, which opens up the state's sugar shacks to the maple syrup-crazed public. Nerd that I am, I’ve had this year's Maple Weekend on my calendar since last year's maple weekend, because I just can’t seem get enough of watching clear sap drip slowly into a bucket.

Maple weekend also alerted me to a food scoop: The maple industry wants to re-grade syrup to eliminate names like “Grade A” and “Grade B” and instead categorize maple syrup based on its color. Because even though Grade B implies dog-food quality, Grade B syrup is actually darker, tastier, and the favorite of true maple lovers.

So go forth, make some cheese, save the whey, cook some pancakes, and get busy smothering them with Grade B syrup.

Whey pancakes
Recipe from King Arthur Flour’s The Baking Sheet Newsletter
2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose or Traditional Whole Wheat Flour or a combination of both
1 to 2 tablespoons sugar, honey, maple syrup, etc. (I used two of sugar, but I bet maple syrup would be better)
1 teaspoon baking soda (Sift this mofo if you know what’s good for you!)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups whey
2 large eggs
2 to 4 tablespoon vegetable oil
Mix the dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl.
In a smaller bowl, beat together the whey, eggs and vegetable oil.
Blend the liquid ingredients with the dry for about 20 seconds.
Scoop by 1/4-cup measures onto a hot, buttered griddle, cook, and enjoy.