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Old 04-13-2007, 09:32 AM   #1
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ISO Effects of varying ingredients in pancakes

Behind this question is some interest in learning a little about cooking chemistry.

Assuming a basic recipe for pancakes: 1C flour, 1C milk, 1 egg, 1/2t salt, 2T sugar, 2t baking powder, and 3T oil.

What are the impacts on the final product if you:

Increase/decrease the flour?
Decrease the milk and add an egg?
Increase the baking powder?
Increase the oil?
Change the oil to butter or margarine?
(I'm assuming increases in salt or sugar simply effects final taste(?))
Mix flours like half general purpose and half buckwheat?

Another way to ask the question is what change to make if pancakes are:

flat, not airy?
seem hard not soft?

Finally, if you plan to add fruit (like blueberries):

Should the be added to the batter and mixed in or should they be added to the tops when first placed on a griddle?
If added, should other ingredients be adjusted?

Again, my interest is to choose a simple recipe to learn what the ingredients actually do to the final product and result changes caused by varying proportions.

Thanks

Liv

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Old 04-13-2007, 10:32 AM   #2
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Smile Some ingredient thoughts

Liv,

Here are a few thoughts to start you on your learning.

Be careful about adding more sugar because it “simply affects final taste “. Sugar also effects structure and browning.

Oil, butter and margarine are not totally interchangeable. Oil is 100% fat. Butter and margarine are both usually 80% fat and 20% non-fat. Substituting butter or margarine for oil will make the result lighter. As for exchanging butter for margarine, because of the differences in melting point and composition many people feel that butter has a “smoother taste” with no after taste.

Now, to change the structure of your pancakes, a good option to try is adding egg. The egg will add liquid making the batter lighter. It will add flavor, add tenderness, help incorporate the fat, and increase volume. But be careful adding too much egg will turn your pancakes into crepes with an “eggy” flavor.

Your best bet is to try a few changes. Try adding an egg to your batter. Next try substituting melted butter for the oil. See which changes you like.

Happy experimenting!

Linda
www.LindasGourmetCookies.com
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Old 04-13-2007, 10:48 AM   #3
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Are you simply asking why your pancakes are flat & hard?
Your recipe: 1C flour, 1C milk, 1 egg, 1/2t salt, 2T sugar, 2t baking powder, and 3T oil.
You did not give the instructions that you used for incorporating these ingredients.
In a separate bowl combine the dry ingredients (flour, salt, baking powder). (I do not use baking powder. It is a leavening agent and so are eggs, just add an extra egg) (omit the sugar)
Break your eggs into a small dish and slightly beat it to mix yolk & white. But not so much that it is foamy. Add 1/2 cup whole or 2% milk to the eggs and gently stir together and then add the oil and mix it in with the eggs & milk.
Return to the bowl of dry ingredients and make a well in the center. Pour the milk/egg mixture into the well and stir until the dry ingredients are moist.
Measure 1/2 cup milk and add only enough to make a thick pour batter. Do not beat pancake batter.
Your griddle should be preheated to medium/low heat so that your pancakes can cook through without burning.
Lightly grease your griddle or spray with nonstick cooking spray. Using a ladle, pour about 1/4 cup of pancake batter for each pancake. Let them cook until you see air holes and the tops seem to be dry. Turn and cook them only to lightly brown. Pile them on your plate and eat with your favorite topping (syrup or jam...etc)
[You need this thick batter when adding 1/4 cup of blueberries so that they do not sink to the bottom of the bowl. Cook blueberry pancakes same as above]
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Old 04-13-2007, 11:32 AM   #4
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Thank you both for the posts. My question wasn't because my pancakes were flat all the time. I just noticed that they varied from batch to batch and wasn't sure why. Historically I've used Bisquick and want to start making from scratch to have a little better control.

Interesting about the cooking temp. I usually turn the griddle way up. Apparently, that's not a good idea.

Both of you seemed to suggest adding egg for lighter pancakes possibly even excluding the soda. Another good learning.

Why salt in the recipe? Is it just to brighten flavors?

Unless I get real lazy I do tend to beat the egg a little and mix the wet ingredients and then combine with the dry.

I think a good experiment would be to add egg, drop the soda, and use butter as the fat.

Thanks so much

Liv
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Old 04-14-2007, 07:59 AM   #5
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You may want to try a self rising flour. (then no need for baking powder, btw!) Also add a squeeze of lemon juice in the milk and let it stand for about 10 minutes, this will enforce the "fluffing up power".
This formula always works perfectly for our pancakes.
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Old 04-14-2007, 11:55 AM   #6
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It's interesting that there seems to be 2 schools of thought emerging. 1 is to use baking powder (or self-rising flour) and the other is to use extra egg instead.

If we concentrate on those two only, what other differences will there be? I'm assuming one is that extra egg changes the dry to wet ratio a little.

Does more egg, for instance, change the overall final product (other than giving it some extra rise)?

Liv

P.S. I'll start experimenting soon so some of these questions will be answered via experience. I just want to know what to expect so I can evaluate the results a bit better.
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Old 04-14-2007, 01:09 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urmaniac13
You may want to try a self rising flour. (then no need for baking powder, btw!) Also add a squeeze of lemon juice in the milk and let it stand for about 10 minutes, this will enforce the "fluffing up power".
This formula always works perfectly for our pancakes.
I have fizzed my biscuit recipes with some lemon juice before. I had never heard anyone else who did this. Thanks for reminding me about this.
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Old 04-14-2007, 01:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StirBlue
I have fizzed my biscuit recipes with some lemon juice before. I had never heard anyone else who did this. Thanks for reminding me about this.

these are also known as buttermilk pancakes
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Old 04-14-2007, 01:23 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Livingston
It's interesting that there seems to be 2 schools of thought emerging. 1 is to use baking powder (or self-rising flour) and the other is to use extra egg instead.


Liv

P.S. I'll start experimenting soon so some of these questions will be answered via experience. I just want to know what to expect so I can evaluate the results a bit better.
I combine both these schools of thought. Since I use all whole grains in my pancakes, I use all the leavening techniques I can find. I use 2 eggs, buttermilk along with baking powder and baking soda, and I whip the eggs before adding the other ingredients.
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Old 04-14-2007, 01:36 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bethzaring
I combine both these schools of thought. Since I use all whole grains in my pancakes, I use all the leavening techniques I can find. I use 2 eggs, buttermilk along with baking powder and baking soda, and I whip the eggs before adding the other ingredients.
Will this technique work with buckwheat pancakes?
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