Friday, January 2, 2009

Lemon Pancake Total Failure

I woke up this morning feeling like lemon pancakes. I'm also not a natural cook. Together, this had DISASTER written all over it.

Once again, it was Google to the rescue and I found this delicious-looking recipe off the net.
(Email subscribers click on the download link to view the video)

I'd found it yonks ago when I was trying to figure out how to "fold egg whites" and saved the link coz his pancakes looked so yummy. Plus, he made it look so easy. Since I also had some super-ripe bananas, I figured I'd add them to the pancakes too, for added sugar and flavour. I substituted brown rice flour for regular flour, and xylitol for sugar.

I think the first mistake was that my batter didn't quite look as smooth as his.

Coz I was in a hurry to get to stiffening my egg whites, I forgot about the texture of the batter. Oops. Good thing is, because of all this yoga and adjusting I've been giving, I've built up pretty strong arm muscles and was able to finally get stiff egg whites in about 5 minutes by HAND BEATING them.

It was only when I got to slopping the batter onto the frying pan that I realized "eh? isn't pancake batter supposed to be kinda runny?!"

(The yellow bits are the bananas I'd placed in the middle of the pancakes. Which is why it turned out quite thick too)

No bubbles appeared, like how Chef Mitzewich explained above. So I just flipped the pancake when it seemed long enough on the one side. It didn't turn out too badly.

The trouble started after I flipped it. Firstly, it didn't rise as beautifully as Chef Mitzewich's pancake. In fact, it didn't rise AT ALL. Then secondly, the banana bits that were sticking out of the pancake on the underside started sizzling. I started to smell them burning a bit, then decided to flip the pancake around again to check... and the whole underside disintegrated coz it hadn't been cooked properly yet and was still sticking to the pan.

On top of this, the banana bits were BLACK and BURNT, so I quickly dug them out of the pancake in an attempt to salvage whatever was left.

This is what the underside looked like with the bananas dug out... the first pot-holed pancake I made:

So then I decided "OK, don't put the bananas in the pancakes. Just grill them on the side" (I was trying to copy Bill's Cafe in Sydney - they've got bananas in their ricotta hotcakes and the entire thing is just heavenly).

And the second pancake turned out kinda thick as well, but at least wasn't pot-holed and didn't quite burn like the first one. By this time, the frying pan was sooooo hot that the bananas just sizzled and immediately started browning.

That doesn't look too bad. But the taste was a whole different story. Kelly dug in hungrily since it had been about an hour since I started my pancake attempt... but for some reason, the super-sweet, super ripe bananas ended up SUPER BITTER, and the whole thing was just unappetizing altogether.

I'm still trying to figure out where the heck the bitter aftertaste came from... my theory is the frying pan was just too hot from being on the fire for so long after so many attempts, and you're not supposed to be cooking in a non-stick pan on high heat coz it gets noxious and carcinogenic. Maybe it was the teflon? (Sic!)

We spat everything out, trashed the rest of the batter and ended up going out for breakfast.

My delicious Yup Wrap from Buzz with scrambled eggs and smoked salmon was waaaaaay better than the failed lemon-banana pancakes.

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