What are you gonna eat for a leisurely, lovely Saturday morning breakfast? I know! I know! Hey, pick me!
The answer is: Apple Cider Pancakes with Apple Cider Syrup that’s so good it should come with a warning label. I fussed with these recipes all last week in preparation for our Pre-Walk Pancake Party and, after eating my weight in pancakes, I ended up going with this recipe with nary an alteration. I added cinnamon to the first batch, but took it out of the second and I like it just the way it is. It uses vanilla yogurt with no added sugar and it’s makes a cake with a delightful texture that isn’t too sweet and serves as the perfect balance to the syrup.
The syrup was a little bit trickier. I love the base recipe (which I found on lots of blogs and web sites) but I felt it needed some softening and thickening at the end. So – I started with this:
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 cups apple cider
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 cinnamon sticks
In a heavy saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. When butter stops foaming, add the apple cider, brown sugar, and cinnamon sticks. Bring to a boil, stirring. Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring frequently, until reduced by half to about 1 to 1 1/4 cups. This will take about 15 minutes. The syrup will thicken as it cools.
Except, it didn’t really thicken much. And it was very delicious, but very intense. So I added about 3/4 cup of maple syrup (just taste as you go to see how apple-y you want your syrup to be) and then I thickened the rest of it with a little corn starch. For one batch, I added some apple pie spice, but I didn’t like it very well. Those spices seem really bossy to me and they took over the fresh apple flavor. One note: cinnamon sticks really do work much better than ground cinnamon because you want to keep the syrup smooth and silky, rather than grainy.
For the Pancake Party, I quintupled the pancake recipe and tripled the syrup. I bought a big red bucket and mixed up the pancakes in that and it worked out perfectly. I also experimented with making the batter the night before and cooking them up in the morning and that was great too.
So – there you have it – a happy breakfast to welcome fall!
I’d love to know: what’s your favorite recipe for this beautiful season?