Friday, May 30, 2008

Sweet Potato/Squash Pancakes

I've been trying to spend some time blogging lately although time is so scarce of late, and the computer so difficult to use...but I did visit a friend's blog and was distressed to learn her family didn't like her sweet potato pancakes...which are a favorite in our house. We will be having them today for meatless Friday at the request of my children. BTW, do you all keep meatless Fridays even when not in Lent? Just wondering as some of my Catholic friends do and some do not. We have been doing so for several years now, but neither my husband nor myself were raised to do so.

Some cooking tips for pancakes in general.
1- You must not rush them. I find when I turn too soon, they look fine outside and are uncooked inside.
2- Get your griddle good and hot, but then, as you are cooking turn down the flame. I suppose as the pan retains its heat, your pancakes get a nice golden color outside and are undercooked inside. I usually end up with my stove turned down quite low.
3- You must sample as you cook, lol, my favorite tip of course. I find making pancakes for a large brood of hungry children usually requires an excessive amount of time at the stove, as I generally need to quadruple the batch of an ordinary recipe to feed my hungry clan. I sample as I go, pancakes are delightful hot off the griddle sans butter and syrup, saving me the calories, but also insuring that my pancakes are properly cooked all the way through without burning the outside.
4- I may use a little butter on the griddle for flavor, but find my best success is with a dollop of olive oil. I heat the oil on the griddle then spread it around and pour off the excess into a small coffee cup. I will use that excess to re-grease pan if necessary. The oil doesn't smoke because I am always turning down the flame.
5- It may sound cliche, but always use fine seasonings. I buy korintje cinnamon in bulk. For a pound bag of this fine seasoning I generally pay less than $5.00 and trust me, you can taste the difference. Incidentally to buy less than 2 oz. of the same seasoning packaged in a usual jar, it is $3.85. I'd rather have a pound in a foil bag and use a small jar to store it in! I also grate my nutmeg fresh.

Now for the recipe:
Sweet Potato Pancakes
1 cup of all purpose flour
1 cup of whole wheat flour
4 tablespoons baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
2 cups of milk
4 tsps melted butter plus more for skillet, or oil for skillet
2 whole eggs
1 sweet potato, cooked until tender, then pureed

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients. Mix together and whisk until smooth. Cook batches in buttered skillet until bubbles form on surface, then turn over and cook until dark golden brown.


NOTE: When I make this recipe I usually use butternut squash which I've baked and pureed and frozen in one cup quantities. I do believe the sweet potato would make for a nicer flavor than the squash, and definitely for a more beautiful color, but my family loves this plainer version and we use it because it is what I have on hand!

My children love to slather on the butter and syrup, but I think these pancakes stand alone just fine and usually have my fill at the stove, without any toppings whatsoever.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Back to the Blog Again!

I'm not at my home computer so I can put up a quick post. Since I've not had a good computer connection and we've acquired a computer virus on top of an intermittent connection I have not been able to post at all. We have decided to put our house on the market and are looking to relocate our home to the Midwest. This requires my husband to find a new job, so when we can get on the computer, all of the time is spent on job applications! If you think of us, please offer a prayer for a speedy, adequate job offer. I will keep you updated when I can. The good news is after we are settled we are sure to have better internet service than we currently have and I shall be able to post more regularly again.

We've had a Sacramental Season at the Thorns household. My eldest was confirmed and my number four child made his first confession and had his First Holy Communion. It was a beautiful blessing bestowed upon our family having so much to be thankful for.

Since our house is on the market we are cleaning out. This is no easy task with a large family, pets, and several out buildings on the property. We've had one large tag sale and one more planned for next weekend. My children are unaware at this point that we are relocating because we do not want to stress them about a move when we don't know where we will be going or even when we will leave town. It is hard enough on children to uproot and move, why add to that? That being had, they have been real troopers about cleaning out. We've made significant progress in the clutter control and the purging process.

If anyone wants to buy a house in the Middle-of-Nowhere, NY, do let me know, lol. I must say this is the most beautiful area of NY and you are sure to be happy here, we just cannot make do with the extremely long commute my husband has for work (NOT AT $4.07 A GALLON AND RISING FOR GASOLINE) and the liberal diocese we live in. I do miss all my internet friends, I rarely get on the net to read blogs or visit my internet groups at all anymore.

I miss you all and pray you all are well. God bless!