Whole Grain Oat & Millet Pancakes with Shaved Apples
I have this thing with pancakes. I love the idea of a Saturday morning spent with a short stack, but regular flapjacks leave me feeling heavy in the gut and light in the head.
So I’ve long wanted a recipe for whole grain pancakes that didn’t drain me of all my Saturday energy. This one came close. This recipe looks good, even if it’s intended for kids. And when I saw that My New Roots had put a recipe for soaked grain pancakes that didn’t require any ingredients besides soaked grains, I knew I had to get out the griddle.
I’m a big fan of soaking farro, oats, and rice before I cook them. Water (and often some acid, like vinegar or yogurt) helps break down the hard-to-digest elements in the grain, making them quicker to cook, plus easier to stomach and more filling. Those last two qualities were just what I needed in my pancakes! To make the whole grain batter, you blend the soaked oats (for example) with fresh water until they reach the consistency of pancake batter, instead of cooking them up into a pot of porridge. Though the cakes that result aren’t fluffy like a typical diner griddle cake, the pancakes tasted far more like pancakes than like oatmeal disguised in pancake form.
Though you don’t need anything but the grains, blended, I did add a few things: an egg, which helps make these pancake-y, as well as tiny bits of sugar and salt. In future renditions, I may flavor the pancakes with fruit, nut butters, cinnamon, shredded coconut, or lemon zest, and also try replacing some of the water with coconut milk or whole milk, for a richer breakfast.
- ¾ cup steel cut oats or whole oat groats
- ¼ cup millet, or another whole grain, or more oats
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon maple sugar, brown sugar, maple syrup, or honey
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil or butter
- 1 apple
- Maple syrup (optional)
- The night before, combine the oats and millet in a small bowl. Add water to cover by a few inches, then stir in the vinegar. Leave on the counter overnight.
- In the morning, drain off the water from the grains using a fine mesh strainer. Rinse the grains well and drain again. Add to the blender with ⅔ cup of water, the sugar, and the salt. Blend on the highest setting for a minute or two, until very smooth. Add the egg and blend again. The batter should be pourable but not watery--like any other pancake batter. If it's too thick, add water by the tablespoon, blending as you go, until you reach the right texture.
- Heat a cast iron skillet or frying pan over medium-low heat for 5 minutes. Add about 1 teaspoon of butter or coconut oil, let it melt, then use about ¼ cup of batter to make a pancake. When bubbles start to show, 2 to 3 minutes, flip the cake. Cook another 2 minutes, then remove from the pan. Repeat til there's no more batter, adding a little more butter and oil to the pan if the pancakes start to stick.
- Meanwhile, core the apple. When the pancakes are ready, pile up a stack and use a mandoline to shave slices in a pile on top. Serve with maple syrup.
- You can store leftovers in the fridge for a couple of days.