The Best Cornmeal Pancakes for the Best Dads
Father’s Day doesn’t get nearly the same amount of fanfare as Mother’s Day. But today’s dads are hands-on parents, and they deserve a Father’s Day that shows them you and the kiddos appreciate all they do.
They may not thrill at the sight of tulips and truffles, but we can guarantee that the XY set would love breakfast in bed just as much as us moms.
Dads tend to go for lumberjack breakfasts, rib-sticking dishes like biscuits and gravy or corned beef hash. But these are a tall order for kids, so we decided to go with cornmeal pancakes.
Cornmeal pancakes are easy to make, plus there’s something about them that says “dad.” They just seem more manly than the regular old buttermilk kind. Maybe it’s because they conjure images of weather-beaten cowboys cooking over a campfire.
As much as we applaud authenticity, though, nobody actually wants to eat the thin, gritty johnny cakes of pioneer days. This is the 21st century. We don’t have to make do with meals built around non-perishables you can carry on your horse. We have cars and grocery stores at our disposal, so we’re willing to add whatever it takes to make cornmeal pancakes that are fluffy and light rather than punishment in a pan.
Turns out there’s no secret to fluffy cornmeal pancakes. They’re essentially just buttermilk pancakes with half the flour swapped out for fine cornmeal. The result is bold yet tender — just like dad.
Add crisp, thick-sliced bacon and a couple of fried eggs, and you’ve got a breakfast worthy of the (kid) wrangler in your life.
Makes about 14
These pancakes have the fluffy lightness of traditional pancakes, but the earthy corn flavor of cornmeal. You might be tempted to skimp on the butter, but it makes the pancakes irresistibly moist and accentuates the corn flavor.
1 ¼ cups buttermilk
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup finely ground cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
In a medium bowl or large measuring cup, combine the buttermilk, eggs and vanilla until well blended. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda, dark brown sugar and salt. Stir the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients until just combined. Stir in the melted butter. Let the batter rest for up to 10 minutes to thicken while you heat the griddle.
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees and place a baking sheet on the center rack to hold the pancakes and keep them warm until serving.
Preheat a griddle or skillet over medium heat. Lightly coat it with oil if necessary, wiping off any excess. Working in batches, use a ¼ cup measure to pour the batter for each pancake. Cook until the bottoms are golden and the edges are beginning to look set, about 1 ½ minutes. Turn and cook on the second side until golden, about 1 minute more.
Transfer cooked pancakes to the baking sheet in the oven to keep warm. Repeat with the remaining batter. Serve with warm maple syrup and crispy bacon.