Saturday, June 16, 2012

The secret to making fluffy banana pikelets



Pikelets are one of the first things I learned how to make, besides scones and spaghetti bolognese. Over the years I've experimented until I came up with the fluffiest pikelets ever - because I was sick of the little dough coasters I kept churning out. I kept eating them, having a layer of cream thicker than the pikelet itself, but I'd eat it!

The trick is self-raising flour AND baking powder, and to flip them before the bubbles that are appearing get too numerous. If you wait until bubbles appear and then burst, you're not creating the biggest air pockets you can. So as soon as the bubbles appear and the sides look reasonably stable, flip 'em. They rise and get fat and are a hell of a lot better than a dough coaster.

Anyhow, these ones are baby-sized because they were Abby's breakfast, but you can make them any size you want. You can also sub bananas for apples, sultanas, chocolate chips, blueberries - anything you like! It's a good base mixture to go crazy with.

If you're looking for a healthier option, you can use wholemeal flour, or half-wholemeal, half-white. You can leave out the sugar entirely or use a sugar substitute. 

Ingredients:
1 banana, mashed
1 cup self-raising flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg
3/4 cup milk
a couple of drops of vanilla extract
pinch salt

Directions:

1. Mix everything into a bowl. Lumps are ok. At this point you can leave it to start activating the raising agents so it gets bubbly and produces a lighter result - about half an hour or so, or if you don't think ahead, like me, just use it straight away.

2. Melt a little butter in a pan over medium-low heat. Drop a tablespoonfull (for baby sized pikelets) in the pan without touching. For bigger sizes, use two tablespoons and spread it out a bit. 

3. After two minutes or so, bubbles should appear and begin to burst, and the sides of the pikelet should be fairly sturdy. The underside should be starting to brown. Flip carefully, as the top will still be quite gooey and you can quite possibly fling it everywhere, and cook the other side for a minute or so, until underside is golden.

There you have it. Twenty-five years of trial and error knowledge. Go forth and pikelet!

Unless you have a trick that I should know? Spill!

24 comments:

  1. Yum! About to try these now for the boy- hopefully will work with gf flour and goats milk.

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  2. ANB of Suburban SonnetJune 18, 2012 at 6:29 PM

    These look great, good tip about baking powder, thanks! I usually leave the sugar out entirely or use only a tablespoon. I also add lemon rind and substitute yoghurt for some of the milk.

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  3. ooh yogurt! I never thought about that, because I don't eat a lot of it and never have, so don't think to use it. And am too lazy to grate a lemon! I bet yours taste amazing. I leave the sugar out of pancakes, but always miss it in pikelets. I need to retrain my palate!

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  4. Yum! Can I add my secret to fluffy pikelets/pancakes too? Use buttermilk instead of normal milk. You buy it at the store or use the buttermilk strained off from making butter. To die for. You've got to try it!

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  5. These look so great!!! Will definitely make these for the kids...they really look wonderful. Mmmmm pikelets....

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  6. Oooh, great tip about flipping before all the bubbles pop, I will try that for sure.  I use buttermilk for extra fluffiness too (when I have it).  A bit of apple puree in place of some of the milk, and some cinnamon make yummy pikelets too :)

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  7. Mmm, yummy! My little fluffy pancake trick is baking powder AND bi-carb soda AND a tsp of vinegar! The vinegar and bi-carb make delicious little bubbles inside, yum yum! 

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  8. Heck yes! Count me in, they look delicious. 

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  9. oh yum.. these are great! Making them right now for sunday breakfast!!! I used Spelt flour and lots of baking powder so i hope they rise ok! xx

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  10. First time making pikelets, inspired as these sounded so easy and so good, and they were!  Kids loved them, so did we.  Can't wait to try the variations now xo

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  11. Yes of course you can! And I've definitely tried it but then it sits in my fridge mocking me for ages because I don't use it for anything else! I find it's pretty expensive. I used to do the lemon juice in milk thing to make my own, but when I switched to soy I wasn't sure if it would still work, and wasn't game to try! One day I'll make my own butter. mmmmm buttterrrrrrrrr

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  12. They go so fast too! When I have more than one kid I'm going to have to start making double batches.

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  13. Ooh did they? I've not tried spelt, but I'd like to!

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  14. Oh your first time?! I'm so pleased they worked so well for you, they really are terribly simple. Hope they become a favourite!

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  15. Yes I love apple and cinnamon ones! I just had some bananas that were going brown and seeing as both Abby and I don't eat them plain, this was the perfect receptacle! The buttermilk is an excellent tip, I used to make my own :)

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  16. Yes, first time.  My deal old Grandma made the best pikelets throughout my childhood and no one learned the knack from her before she died, and I didn't have the heart to make something in case it didn't live up to Grandma's.  Your recipe is a new fave xo

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  17. Oh I totally understand that! Pleased you like these ones though :)

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  18. Ps how you tried whole meal flour , just wondering if it would work ?

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  19. It'd be fine! Depends on if you like the taste though x

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  20. Perfection! This kids loved them. Thanks x

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  21. You are very welcome! I'm tempted to make some right now...

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