A little cream makes everything better

Cream makes everything better.  So does butter.  We always suspected it, but more and more I realize that it’s an eternal truth.  In fact, I’m starting to suspect that primordial ooze was really sweet cream butter.  Yep, that’s right.  Full-fat dairy gave birth to the universe as we know it.

All right, well maybe not.  But it did give birth to these pancakes.  But don’t worry; it was a lot cleaner than you think, and with less screaming.

I’ve struggled to make good pancakes for a while.  I could do it when I was a kid but that was when we bought like, Aunt Jemima boxed mix and it was chemically engineered to be so easy that even a 9 year old could do it.  But when I try to make that kind of magic out of raw ingredients on my own, sometimes it doesn’t work out.  They turn out rubbery or chewy or whatever.  This is, of course, a travesty because Josh likes pancakes.  So Lauren practices her pancakes.  I have a go-to recipe that I trot out and it’s usually pretty good but a few weeks ago, I found a way to make it even better.  And then earlier this week, I tried it again for dinner.  And let me tell you, it works.  What’s the secret, you ask?

Uh well duh, did you not read the previous few paragraphs?  Cream, silly.  Fresh heavy cream makes delightfully light, tasty pancakes. I found this out by accident.  I wanted to make these, like I said, a few weeks ago, but had no butter left whatsoever (shock! awe!).  I figured I could just skip it–it’s only a few tablespoons–and make up for the loss of fat by substituting some of the milk in the recipe for cream–of which I had a copious amount, thanks to our weekly dairy delivery from Calder’s.  It made the batter very thick.  So thick that I said to myself, “I may not have though this cunning plan all the way through.”  But I forged ahead anyway, scooping the dough batter out with an ice cream scooping and plopping it down on my griddle that was preheated to 350F.  I thought for sure they were just going to stick and burn.  But they did not.  They turned out fluffy, with great texture and lightly sweet, fabulous flavor.

So this week, when I wanted to make breakfast for dinner again (I love doing that), I decided to make another batch of the pancakes, with a few fried eggs (drizzled with olive oil and thyme, as fried eggs should always be) on the side.  I also decided, inspired perhaps by the delicious blueberry-lime mojito slushies my friend Paul made at our bbq fest the weekend before, to make a fruity sauce for my fluffy pancake pillows of delight.  (You like that don’t you?)  Luckily, I had several pounds of blueberries in the freezer thanks to Josh’s berry-hoarding habit.  I also had leftover limes from the aforementioned mojito slushies.  I also had….wait for it…lots of cream.

Now, those of you watching your waistlines (whether they are expanding or contracting) should not recoil in fear here.  There is cream in both parts of this recipe, yes but not a lot and this is a batch of pancakes meant to be shared.  Moderation, people.

So I put a pound of frozen blueberries in a pot, with the juice and zest of one lime and set them to cooking over medium heat until the juices started flowing and it cooked down a third or so.  Then I turned the heat down and added a splash of cream and let it simmer on the stove while I made the pancakes.

There.  That’s it.  That’s all.  It’s brilliantly easy.  It’s sweet.  It’s tasty.  It’s full of antioxidants.  Oh and cream.  Sweet primordial cream.

Cream Pancakes with Blueberry-Lime Sauce

1 cup all-purpose  flour
2  teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar in the raw (or regular sugar if that’s what you got)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 c. milk
1/2 c. heavy cream
baking spray

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, egg, milk and cream and mix until just combined. Make sure you do not over mix the batter or the pancakes will be tough.

Heat a frying pan or griddle over medium high heat until a few sprinkles of water dropped on the pan or griddle splatter. Spray griddle with baking spray.Using a small ladle or scoop, pour about 1/4 cup of pancake batter onto the pan, spacing the pancakes a few inches from each other. When the bottoms of the pancakes are brown and bubbles start to appear on the top surfaces of the pancakes (2-3 minutes), turn over.

Cook until lightly browned (about 1-2 minutes)

Blueberry Lime Sauce
1 lb frozen (or fresh) blueberries
the juice and zest of 1 lime
2 tbsp heavy cream

Put blueberries, juice and zest into a saucepan over medium heat.  Bring to a simmer and cook down by about a third.  Reduce heat to low, add cream.  Cook for 4-5 more minutes.  Ladle over pancakes.

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