Cornmeal Pancakes in a Jiff

Awhile back, I had a delicious plate of cornmeal pancakes at a restaurant and knew I needed to move beyond the buttermilk when it came to flapjacks at home.  I looked to my trusty bibles for everything-food–The Joy of Cooking and How to Cook Everything.  After hauling out my cornmeal, flour, baking powder, and a variety of other ingredients, I set to the task of making my batter.  One recipe called for maple syrup to be added right to the batter in lieu of sugar, which I assumed was to add flavor, but I realized after it was an attempt to add moisture as well. 

Well, to make a long story short, I thought the flapjacks were a flop.  One of my kids poured at least a half of a cup of syrup on top claiming they were “too dry” ( I guess that extra maple syrup in the batter didn’t help).  I found them lacking flavor and texture.  I was just about to give up on this idea  when I remembered seeing instructions for cornmeal pancakes on the side of a Jiffy Corn Muffin mix.  Yes, those little blue and white boxes that were always in our pantry when I was a kid.  My mom often used them for biscuits, muffins, and even delicious chocolate drop cookies she’d make with the box of Jiffy chocolate cake mix. 

The pancakes couldn’t have been more simple.  I did make one adjustment to cut down on the fat and calories;  I substituted applesauce where it called for melted shortening (I mean who has shortening in their house anymore anyway?).  Then, just add milk and egg and cook as you normally would cook pancakes.  It certainly saved on time—you can prepare the batter in less time than it takes to heat up your griddle.  The best part was that they were delicious, moist, and had a fantastic texture.  I’m sure the Jiffy mix isn’t quite as healthy as the from-scratch variety, but considering the amount of syrup my kids use, this wasn’t exactly the breakfast of champions anyway.  Consider it a nice, once-in-awhile alternative to regular pancakes.  I think they are perfect for your holiday guests and come together, well, in a jiff. 

Cornmeal Pancakes

Makes about a dozen pancakes

1 box Jiffy corn muffin mix

1 egg, lightly beaten

2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce

3/4 cup milk (I use skim)

Non-stick cooking spray

Preheat griddle or frying pan. Spray lightly. Blend all ingredients in a bowl. Batter will be slightly lumpy. 

Using a ladle, pour batter onto hot griddle (however large is up to you!).   Flip over when bubbles appear and edges begin to dry.

Serve hot with maple syrup.

For more Jiffy recipes, check out their website:  http://www.jiffymix.com/recipes.php

Click here for more information about Tracy’s Connecticut cooking classes, or to read her The Secret Ingredient Blog.

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