Fairest Alyna, those buckwheat pudding parfaits look freeesh! Also, I think you will very much enjoy Mind of a Chef, though the second season is pretty boring so my advice is to truly relish in the first.
The berry breakfast theme endureth. Long weekends should be pancake weekends. I promise I will shut up about Mind of a Chef after this, but one vaguely obscure ingredient that kept showing up on the first season was freeze-dried stuff. Freeze-dried corn was ground into a powder for corn cookies, and some freeze-dried strawberry pieces showed up on a giant oyster. I was intrigued by the corn powder, especially so after a guest chef on one episode, Alex Stupak, said (about something totally different, namely foam), “It’s the method that sets you free, and it makes that sandbox you’re playing in a little bit bigger.” Quotes always feel cheesy typed out, but I love the sentiment, which obviously has a wider application to life in general.
One advantage of using freeze-dried ingredients is that they are super flavorful so you don’t have to use a ton, and they don’t throw off the ratio of dry to wet ingredients. Freeze-dried produce is actually not terribly hard to find: Trader Joe’s has a lot of freeze-dried fruits, and Whole Foods carries the Just Tomatoes brand of freeze-dried goods that includes some vegetables. I want to think of something to do with the green peas! And I want to make a tomato soup + grilled cheese biscuit that uses tomato powder and shredded cheese. Unfortunately my neighborhood Whole Foods doesn't carry the peas or the tomatoes, so I left with some freeze-dried strawberries. Which I put in these poppy seed pancakes. Why should lemon get to hog all the poppy seeds?
To make the strawberry powder for this recipe, just stick some freeze-dried strawberries into a food processor or blender and process/blend away until you have a powder. A 1.2-oz bag of freeze-dried strawberries yields about 1/3 to 1/2 a cup (eyeballed). This is more than you’ll need for the pancakes, though the pancakes probably can handle more of the strawberry powder if that is of interest to you. Store leftover strawberry powder in an air-tight container. You can definitely substitute the strawberry powder here with corn powder for a more savory pancake, blueberry powder, raspberry powder, you get the idea. It’s the method that sets you free!
Strawberry Poppy Seed Pancakes
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar
4 tablespoons strawberry powder (see directions above)
1 heaping tablespoon poppy seeds
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, strawberry powder, poppy seeds, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the buttermilk, egg, vanilla extract, and melted butter, and whisk to combine. The batter should have small lumps.
Place a frying pan over medium heat and add a pat of butter to the pan. Scoop dollops of batter onto the hot pan. Use about 2 tablespoons of batter for smaller pancakes, or 1/4 cup for larger pancakes. Cook until golden brown on the bottom and bubbling on top. Flip once and cook until golden brown on each side.
Place cooked pancakes on an oven-proof plate and place in a warm (200 degrees F) oven until all pancakes are cooked and ready to serve. Enjoy with lemon juice and powdered sugar or honey.