Who doesn’t like pancakes – the soft fluffy kind that melts in your mouth ! Well here is one that is even better – sourdough pancakes. Not only do these taste great , the aromas as these cook are heavenly. All this without any leavening or other flavorings. What better way to use up extra sourdough starter !!
I am a big fan of sourdough breads. The flavor of sourdough bread is much more complex and it adds to the nutritional value as well. Wild yeast and the bacteria in these are the magicians that are missing in commercial yeast. I can go on and on about these. Here is how to make your own starter from scratch.
I have starter/s , living, breathing active ones, on hand all the time. But then there comes a time when my regular baking schedule goes off the track. Then there are times when I feed the starter gets it all active and discover that there is a basket of fresh baked bread on the counter top (magic of another kind or dementia(?)) . Well all these happen in real life. Typically when the starter gets to be a lot more than you need could, dry some and store for the future.
One batch of dried starter is all you need. What is one to do when there is more fresh starter ? Usually the extra gets thrown down the sink – hence the name discard . Isn’t that plain waste of a good thing ?? Here is another option – make pancakes.
This is one recipe you can try with fresh active starter or the one that has started to deflate slightly. A flat starter – one without bubbles that needs to be activated again – is not the one to be used here. If the starter is not active, refresh it just the way you do usually. Remove the portion that you have to discard and set it aside in a warm place for about an hour (ex: oven set to 350° F and turn on only for a minute or two and turned off) or until it is bubbly.
This pancake is not too sweet or too fluffy , but spongy and holds its shape very nicely. It makes me think of my favorite Appam from Kerala. If your starter is matured chances are the flavors will match too. But mature starter or not, the pancakes will be very flavorful. What sets these apart a mature starter is the aroma. the complex flavors of the sourdough culture wafts through the air as it cooks. Incredible just does not seem to describe it 🙂
I have made these a few times before and each time it was a hit. Once we have tried it without the egg – it is still good , but egg brings that bit of color and flavor making it more rich and appealing. If you are not using eggs, just add the sugar and a pinch of salt, mix well and thin using milk – dairy or non dairy milk is fine in this recipe.
See the millions (OK hundreds ! ) of bubbles forming as it cooks . All that without using baking powder or baking soda!.
The hardest part in the recipe is mixing the egg and the starter. Both are thick and viscous and you need to apply a bit of elbow grease get these two mixed. I do not recommend using a blender for this – as we do not want to lose all the nice air bubbles. Whisking by hand deflates some of the bubbles , but not as much as the blender. If making a larger batch you could use a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment.
I add just a tad bit of sugar to this pancake batter , because I love the wild yeast flavors. If you prefer , double or triple the amount the sugar, but I urge you to try them with less sugar at least once !
- 2 C Sourdough Starter Fresh, Active
- 1 Egg
- 1/2 Tbsp Sugar
- 1/4 C Water As Needed
- 1 Pinch Salt
- Butter/Coconut Oil For Frying
- Take the egg in a mixing bowl. Add sugar and 2 tablespoons of water and beat well till frothy.
- Add a pinch of salt and beat a few more times.
- Add the starter to the egg mix and mix in. If needed add the remaining water a little by little to obtain the poring consistency of pancake batter.
- Set aside for a few minutes.
- Heat a griddle over medium heat.
- Once it is hot brush it with a slice of butter or coconut oil.
- Pour about 1/4 to 1/3 C of batter on the hot griddle.
- Wait for it to sizzle and the sides to set and pull back a little from the pan. Flip and cook on the other side till cooked through.
- Repeat with the rest of the batter.
- Serve warm.
yeast active. Add more sugar, up to 2 tbsp, as per your taste.
Important: Values are only estimates. Actuals vary depending on ingredients and serving size.
Well I made the pancakes with just a hint of sugar , but then this happened ..
… so I had to make a another batch last weekend.
Ready to test out your starter – here is a simple recipe that might be just perfect for you –