pancjaes

Though we’ve had power back for a few days now we haven’t gotten around to cleaning out the fridge and freezer yet.  Today is the day.  Everything in the fridge is going, along with about 75% of what was in the freezer.  It pains me to throw away so much food but I keep reminding myself it would be worse if we got sick eating questionable meat and dairy products.  Besides, our fridge and freezer are LONG overdue for a thorough cleaning, so in a way I’m looking forward to a fresh start.  I bet I’ll even be able to fit the canister for my ice cream maker in the freezer again (finally!) so I can churn a few more batches to replace what we’ll be throwing away.  I guess it’s not all bad :)

Lemon Ricotta Pancakes with Blueberry<br />
 Sauce

One thing I’m glad I won’t have to throw away is a partial container of ricotta that I used up just before we lost power on Sunday morning.  These lemon ricotta pancakes are the breakfast treat I told you about recently, the ones I made via flashlight.  I’ve had this recipe flagged forever, mainly because I can’t ever seem to finish a container of ricotta cheese before it goes bad, and I was determined to find a few recipes to help remedy that situation.  These pancakes are definitely a new favorite – the lemon flavor was prominent, which I love, and the pancakes had a really light, airy texture.  They were like little clouds of goodness!

I had some frozen wild blueberries in the freezer so I made blueberry sauce to go with the pancakes.   Lemon and blueberry are always a good match in my book.  This particular sauce is quite chunky, and I liked it that way – it would be awesome on ice cream if you had leftovers!  Frozen wild blueberries tend to be pretty sweet, and mine were, so if I used them again in the sauce I would halve the amount of honey.  If you’re using fresh blueberries I’d just recommend tasting them first to see how sweet they are and adjusting the honey accordingly.  Since I couldn’t freeze the leftover pancakes, I wound up eating these for quite a few meals after I made them.  I had them with the blueberry sauce, with maple syrup and even plain too, and they were great in every instance.

Oh, and by the way, happy September!  Can’t believe it’s already here…

Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
from Williams Sonoma (via Annie’s Eats)

3 large eggs, separated
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 cup milk (I used 1%)
zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 1/2 cups cake flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1-2 teaspoons vegetable oil (for the pan)

{If you aren’t going to serve the pancakes until you’ve cooked all of them, preheat oven to 200 F. Spray a wire rack with cooking spray and set it inside a baking sheet then place the baking sheet in the oven.}

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on medium-low until foamy.  Increase the mixer to medium-high speed and gradually add the sugar to the whites; continue beating until medium-soft peaks form.

In a large bowl, whisk together the ricotta, milk, egg yolks, lemon zest and lemon juice.  Add the cake flour, baking powder, and salt, mixing just until incorporated.  Stir in 1/3 of the egg whites to lighten the batter, then gently fold in the remaining 2/3 of the whites.  The batter will be light and airy.

Add 1 teaspoon of the oil to a cold 12-inch nonstick skillet.  Set over medium heat – once the oil starts shimmering, use paper towels to wipe the pan so only a thin, even coating of oil covers the bottom and sides.  Ladle a scant 1/2 cup of batter into the pan for each pancakes.  Cook on the first side until the edges are set and bubbles form on the surface. Use a spatula to flip the pancakes and cook on the second side until golden brown and cooked through. {If not serving immediately, transfer the pancakes to the wire rack in the oven.} Repeat with remaining batter, adding the rest of the oil to the pan if necessary.  Serve pancakes with blueberry sauce.

Makes about 12 pancakes

Chunky Blueberry Sauce
from Eating Well

2 cups fresh or frozen (not thawed) blueberries
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons lemon juice

Combine all of the ingredients in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens, about 10-15 minutes.  The sauce can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.  Warm gently before serving.