There’s breakfast people and there’s dinner people.
I like my coffee on an empty stomach early in the morning, followed by a leisurely dog walk and then a bite to eat around 9 a.m., which usually consists of cereal and yogurt; a one dish item requiring no preparation and few dishes.
On weekends when my husband is home, breakfast is a much bigger deal. The oven is a foreign place for him, so his experiments only require a skillet and a flame. The man who shrinks from any form of cooking that requires a knife, happily tosses a bunch of raw ingredients into a mixing bowl in search of the perfect pancake.
And he found it.
He’s fallen in love with almond butter and cottage cheese, slathering them both on bread or whirring into his smoothies. Last weekend I sat cradling a coffee mug in my lap, as I watched him twist open jars, ravage cabinets and fridge for a host of boxes and containers he spread across the kitchen counter.
I was skeptical, but not for long. Even in the cast iron skillet, that he swears is the superior tool for the browning of pancakes, these little cakes looked different. Then I took my first bite and there was no question, these are the most tender and flavorful pancake I’ve ever eaten.
First, a disclaimer: Don’t dismiss the use of a pancake mix. Wes has studied the finer points of all box mixes and has tested a dozen: Aunt Jemima Original Pancake Mix is the best. Don’t substitute with the “complete” or any other strange variation. The key is the word “original.”
Almondy Cottage Cakes, drenched in Maple syrup
1 cup Aunt Jemima Original Pancake Mix
3/4 cup milk
2 mashed bananas
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1/4 cup cottage cheese
1/4 cup almond butter
Coconut oil for the pan
Pour all the ingredients into a bowl. Wes uses an immersion blender, even though he’s aware some cooks caution against over-mixing. He said the cottage cheese and almond butter make the batter dense and a blender works best for combining the ingredients, with no threat of toughening the texture.
Heat a teaspoon or two of coconut oil in the pan and make pancakes to your preferred size. This recipe yields 6 to 8 pancakes. We double it and freeze some for eating during the week.