Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Blueberry Lemon Ricotta Pancakes

I have a confession to make.

I'm awful at leftovers. I too often wind up wasting all kinds of perfectly good food. Not only restaurant or take-out leftovers, but perishable ingredients and produce that I may have bought for a recipe and have a portion left over. I'm just lacking skills to plan meals around ingredients that I already have within the appropriate freshness time frame. I've bought fresh sage about 3 times in the last month because of this weakness. Seriously shameful.

Blueberry Lemon Ricotta Pancakes

Now that I've finally acknowledged this flaw, I'm trying to do something about it. Last weekend I woke up to one of my now classic Saturday morning "bolt upright in bed with a breakfast-making impulse" moments, and this time the impulse was for ricotta pancakes. I knew I had some left over from my recent foray into Lasagna-Style Baked Ziti, and I rushed downstairs with my fingers crossed that it hadn't expired.

Obviously, it hadn't, because I'm here now sharing these pancakes with you. If you haven't heard of ricotta pancakes before, cheese in pancakes may sound a bit odd. But I promise you won't even know it's there. The only difference is the texture it lends to the batter. These are lighter than air, so fluffy, so melt-in-your-mouth good. Given my newfound desire to use up leftovers, I think I might have to go buy a huge tub of ricotta and make pancakes with it every day just to use it up in a timely manner. Yeah, that's the spirit!

What's your worst kitchen habit?

Blueberry Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
Makes about 12 medium pancakes
Printable Recipe

1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup milk
3 eggs, separated
1⁄4 cup sugar
Zest and juice of 1 lemon (or 1/4 tsp. lemon extract)
1 1⁄2 cups cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
1 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen (do not thaw)

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the ricotta, milk, egg yolks, sugar, lemon zest and juice until smooth. Sift together the flour, baking powder and 1/8 tsp. of the salt over the ricotta mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until just combined.

2. In another large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the egg whites until frothy. Add the remaining 1/8 tsp. salt and continue beating until soft peaks form. Using a rubber spatula, fold one-third of the egg whites into the ricotta mixture, then gently fold in the remaining whites. Fold in blueberries until evenly distributed.

3. Preheat a griddle over medium heat. Spray the griddle with nonstick cooking spray. Ladle 1/3 cup batter onto the griddle for each pancake. Cook until bubbles form on top and the pancakes are golden underneath, 1 to 2 minutes. Flip the pancakes and cook for 1 minute more. Transfer to a warmed plate. Repeat with the remaining batter.


Elisabeth said...

Oooo, those look so good! Silas and I make pancakes on Saturday mornings too, I'll have to try these.

My worst kitchen habit is not doing the dishes in a timely manner. It's frustrating because then when I want to cook something I end up washing JUST the dishes I need and then there's no room in the kitchen and it's pretty much a disaster. I really need to be better about it...

grace said...

the first step is admitting you have a problem. good for you for trying to limit that waste, and this is a darn fine way to do it! my worst kitchen habit? if anything, i'd say i hide out in there too much. even when we have guests over, i sneak away and fiddle around in my kitchen. what can i say, sometimes i'd rather bake than socialize. :)

Emily (The Culinary Couple) said...

I'm bad at leftovers, too. There are just too many recipes to try to spend a meal on something you had the night before!

Delicious Dishings said...

My bad kitchen habit is the same as yours. I can't tell you how many times I buy a package of thyme and only use a few sprigs from it. I topped buying parsley all together and just leave it out when a recipe calls for it. And now when I have to use buttermilk for something, I make sure I have stuff on hand to use the rest of the container for buttermilk pancakes or waffles.

I never have leftover ricotta because I buy the smallest container possible for my lasagna, but these pancakes look awesome so maybe I'll buy ricotta for them and find another way to use up the leftovers. Ha ha.

Anne said...

These look so good! I have some leftover ricotta, too, so maybe I'll give them a try this weekend. Yay pancakes! :)

I don't know if this is my worst kitchen habit, but it's definitely on my mind: I tend to forget what I have, and how much of things I have, so I often buy more of something I think I need. Then I get home and realize that I already have plenty. This is how I came to have almost two pounds of white chocolate in my pantry.

I'm trying to solve the problem by taking inventory of the my pantry, and keeping a list in an online-accessible location. That way, if I'm heading to the store on the way home from work and think I need something, I can check the list to see if I have enough of it at home. Of course, the success of this scheme depends on my keeping the list up to date...

Lauren said...

I have the same habit as you. Leftovers have a tendency to be left, but I definitely need to get into one of two habits: eating them, or making the exact right amount =D.

These pancakes look so absolutely delicious! I'm a big sucker for pancakes. Any time, any kind.

Anonymous said...

@ Anne: That's a great idea--keeping an inventory online. Do you just keep it on your email? I feel like you could market that as an iphone app or something, especially if you could figure out how to make the updates automatic--ha, that is where it gets complicated, I guess. Still, I think I might try the online thing.

I often overestimate my need for bulk grains and beans, which I find are easy to overbuy anyway because they look different in a bag than they do in the jar where I keep them.

Valen said...

I've never had ricotta in pancakes, but I need to try it. The pancakes look good!

Anne said...

foodandtales - I keep it in Evernote so that it's available on my home machine, on my work machine, on my iPhone, and online! It's a great little service. I keep my grocery list and weekly menu plan there, too. But you're right: if we could come up with an auto-updating iPhone app, that would be brilliant! :)

Maggie said...

Ooh, these look and sound so yummy! Wishing it was a "breakfast for dinner" kind of night over here...

Sophie Sportende Foodie said...

oooh my!! These pancakes look so adorable & tasty too!

MMMMMMMM,....lovely food!

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