Breakfasts are usually variations on the same thing: rolled oats, soy milk, stewed fruit, nuts. So the nuts may be almonds, walnuts and/or nibbly little pepitas - actually, it’s usually ‘and’ not ‘or’. The stewed fruit is whatever is in season at the moment, or something retrieved from the depths of the chest freezer. Apples, apricots, rhubarb, even berries. It’s not just that I’m a creature of habit (I am); I love the fibre-filled, wholesome blandness of oats. I love that they are so good for you. Zapped in the microwave in the winter or with fridge-cold soy milk in the summer – it’s oats for breakfast, just about every day.
Months ago - last year - a co-worker told me she makes banana-wheatgerm pancakes for breakfast. I didn’t quite hear the banana-wheatgerm bit; my mind hooked into pancakes. For breakfast.
And that little thought tickled away and resurfaced when I saw this recipe. Ricotta pancakes. For breakfast.
Having pancakes for breakfast - light, fluffy clouds, lumped with natural yoghurt and lots of sweet berry jam - felt like having desserts for breakfast. I was eating cake, not my usual fibre-filled health kick start. It felt naughty.
It also made me slow down and make breakfast a proper meal, instead of something rushed and mobile (weekdays I carry my bowl of oats around as I get dressed and dry my hair; weekends I carry my bowl around as I put the laundry on or strip the bed).
I threw a pretty cloth over the table in a spot that some recent furniture re-arranging has transformed into a light-filled room. Under my nose all these years has been this place, just perfect for relaxing breakfasts in the early morning sunshine! I enjoyed it, knowing full well that all too soon, the dark winter mornings will descend upon Hobart.
I also brewed a proper pot of tea and got the special china teacup out instead of my usual sturdy mug. I made my breakfast a lovely quiet moment before I got stuck into the weekend chores.While I haven’t had ricotta pancakes for breakfast again yet, I’ve remembered that breakfast is the most important meal of the day (up there with cake, of course) and should be treated that way. So even on work days now, I sit down to eat my oats, lingering with a mug and a colourful magazine in the soft morning light. A moment to myself and my oats before the day cranks up.
Adapted from delicious magazine (undated photocopy). This mixture made five pancakes, so double or triple depending on your appetite or bods around the breakfast table.
- Combine 1 cup SR flour, 1 tbspn vanilla sugar and a pinch of salt in a bowl.
- Combine 3/4 cup natural yoghurt and 1 large egg in a jug, then stir thru 30 gms of butter that you've melted (zap it in the microwave).
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir til smooth, then add 100 grams of ricotta and fold thru, leaving a few lumps. The mixture will be fairly stiff.
- Over a medium heat, melt a little butter in a large frypan. Using a 1/4 cup-size measuring cup, scoop some batter into the pan. Flatten out the stiff mixture a bit so it cooks more evently, and cook for a few minutes each side.
- Enjoy with jam, honey, fruit or whatever your weekend appetite desires.
- Note: I made two pancakes on Saturday, then put the bowl of batter in the fridge for the next day's breakfast. On Sunday I added a generous spoonful of natural yoghurt to loosen the cold batter a little, but it was still quite a stiff mix.