I don’t care if you disagree, it is unequivocally THE BEST. No buts about it. Pastries reign supreme, sweets are welcome (helloooo Nutella), fruit is celebrated, and savory foods hold their own so well that they’re easily eaten at any other meal of the day (egg sandwich for lunch, anyone? Steak and eggs for dinner? Have you noticed I really like eggs?).
Breakfast is also my personal favorite because I love rolling out of bed on a lazy Sunday morning and slowly piecing together a nice big breakfast between bleary-eyed yawns. Gently folding together pancake batter, setting the table with all the necessary jams, syrups, and butters, and even cutting up fresh berries and whipping up some cream if I’m feeling especially domestic (which is always) is my favorite weekend ritual. Anyone who’s still in their bed trickles down the stairs at the smell of smoky-sweet bacon frying, and when everyone is gathered around the kitchen table life suddenly just feels so right. I’m telling you, the satisfaction from serving up the perfect breakfast is highly underrated.
Or maybe I’m just a breakfast freak.
After years of boxed pancake mixes and flat flapjacks, I decided to come up with the perfect fluffy pancake. I bumped up the leavening, and added a smidgeon of sugar for good measure. Then I knew I needed something acidic to react with the baking soda, and although buttermilk is the traditional choice, I wanted get these pancakes REALLY tasting like breakfast. So I threw some orange juice right into the batter. A little bit of orange zest was all I needed to elevate these from good to great, and with that, breakfast was served.
The quick raspberry jam goes beautifully along with a drizzle of maple syrup, because the jam itself is very tart. I liked the contrast, but if you want it sweeter, add more sugar; looser, add more juice. The jam-pancake combo is delicious, but the pancakes are awesome alone as well – and because they don’t contain that much sugar, you’re totally welcome to drown them in maple syrup. Dooo it.
Zesty Orange Pancakes & Tart Raspberry Jam
makes 12 6” pancakes
1 cup raspberries (fresh or frozen works)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 Tbsp orange juice
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 3/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp granulated sugar
zest from one medium orange (1-2 Tbsp)
1 cup milk
1 cup orange juice
In a small saucepan, combine the raspberries, sugar, and juice and heat on a low simmer until completely broken down and starting to thicken. Set aside to cool.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. (If you’re leavening is lumpy, sift it).
In a small cup combine the sugar and orange zest. Add the melted butter and mix until combined.
Whisk together the eggs, milk, juice, and butter-sugar mixture in a medium bowl. Pour these wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and mix gently until mostly combined – a few lumps are okay. The batter should be thick and airy.
Heat a nonstick pan on medium-low for a few minutes, until water flicked onto it sizzles. Lower the heat to low and spoon batter onto the pan, cooking until the edges begin to look dry and the tiny air bubbles on the surface start to pop. Flip, then cook for about 1-2 more minutes until cooked through, and remove from heat.
Serve immediately with a pat of butter, covered in the raspberry jam and/or maple syrup, or put them on a rack in a 250 degree F oven to keep them fresh until you’re ready to serve. Freeze the rest – two rounds in a traditional toaster will bring them back to life.