Today is Mardi Gras. Mardi Gras is the final day of the Carnival celebrations, beginning after the feasts on Epiphany and culminating on the day before Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Mardi Gras is French for “Fat Tuesday,” so-named for the typical feasting that occurs on this holiday before the 40 days of Lenten fasting. Today is also called Shrove Tuesday in some countries, which derives from the word shrive, which means “to absolve by way of confession.”
Most relevant to this food blog, however, is that this day is also Pancake Day. In countries the world over, people are making pancakes tonight. Pancakes are traditional for Mardi Gras because they use up stores of rich foods that were forbidden during Lent including eggs, milk and butter. In addition, pancakes are said to symbolize the four pillars of Christian faith: “eggs for creation, flour as the mainstay of the human diet, salt for wholesomeness and milk for purity.”
I love tradition, and I love breakfast for dinner, so I celebrate Mardi Gras by gleefully making pancakes for dinner. Pancakes are great because they come together very quickly and there are a hundred different ways to jazz them up (blueberries, chocolate chips, fruit syrups, maple syrup, whipped cream, dulce de leech, fruit curds, jams, peanut butter, nutella…. stop me, I am drooling). I decided to leave my pancakes very plain tonight, and instead drench them in a yummy but simple maple blueberry sauce.
I prefer using a non-stick electric griddle to make pancakes since I have better control over the temperature and my pancakes cook more evenly, but you can certainly make them in a skillet on the stove. I always recommend doing a practice pancake first anyway, to check your temperature and how much butter you need to grease the pan. Plus, practice pancake calories don’t count! Enjoy and Happy Mardi Gras!
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 granulated white sugar
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup whole milk
1/4 melted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees F. Have a baking sheet ready.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and sugar. Set aside.
In another bowl, combine you eggs, milks, vanilla and melted butter; whisk well. Pour you wet ingredients into your dry ingredients and mix until combined. A few lumps are fine.
Preheat your non-stick griddle to 400 degrees F, or set a large skillet on a medium burner. If you are cooking on the stovetop skillet, add a little butter right before adding your first set of pancakes.
Cook your pancakes until you see bubbles formed all over the top, about 2 to 3 minutes; flip and cook another 2 minutes on the opposite side. Place you cooked pancakes on a baking sheet in he 200 degree F oven until you are ready to serve.
Maple Blueberry Sauce
1 cup frozen blueberries
1 cup maple syrup
1/2 tablespoon tapioca starch
Add all ingredients to a medium saucepan and mix well. Over medium heat, cook until the blueberries burst and the sauce thickens slightly, about 10 minutes. Allow to cool for about 5 minutes before drizzling it over your pancakes. Enjoy!