Friday, October 12, 2012

Fall Flavors

On a recent trip up north to Pismo Beach, our hotel manager informed us about this lovely farm called Avila Valley Barn. I am so glad we shifted our other plans to visit this place! It wasn't just a farm - they had a market full of fresh produce and a petting zoo with cute farm animals. The market was teeming with the season's best - pumpkins of every size, color and shape imaginable. Although we had a whole day left to roam around, I couldn't help but pick up a few veggies and a gorgeous plump sugar pumpkin! After getting home, I simply roasted and pureed the pumpkin. This way I can use it for different recipes. Time for some fall cooking!

Pumpkins at Avila Valley Barn
Some warm, fluffy pancakes seemed like the perfect dish to start off the season. If I had to sum up fall flavors in one dish, I would make these pancakes - ultimately comforting pumpkin-spice pancakes with some chocolate chip goodness! I used 100% whole wheat flour and used no eggs. The pancakes turned out pillowy soft with the help of pumpkin puree and milk. The chocolate in the batter melted as the pancakes cooked and oozed out of each bite. Super delicious. These pancakes didn't even need much syrup to go with them. Just sprinkle some powdered sugar and let some butter melt on top. This is the kind of breakfast you should be eating on a fall weekend! 

Some powdered sugar on top!

Pumpkin Spice - Chocolate Pancakes

1 Cup whole wheat flour
3/4 Cup pumpkin puree from sugar pumpkin
1 Cup milk
1/2 Teaspoon baking soda
1/4 Cup brown sugar (adjust depending on the sweetness of pumpkin puree)
2 Tablespoons melted butter
1/4 Teaspoon cinnamon powder
A hint of nutmeg powder
1 Oz good quality semi-sweet chocolate chips/chunks

Making pumpkin puree:
Preheat oven to 350F.
Cut the pumpkin in half and remove the strings and seeds (don't throw the seeds away - you can roast them for a healthy snack :).
Roast the pumpkin for about 45 mins or until the flesh is fork tender. You can brush the inside of pumpkin with some butter to lock in moisture and add flavor. I let it roast just as is.
Cool the pumpkin, scoop out the flesh (which should be really easy after roasting it) and puree in the food processor. You may need to add a little bit of water to help the processor, but don't make it too thin.

If you don't want to go through the trouble of making your own puree, simply use canned one. But trust me, the fresh puree tastes so much better :).

Making the pancakes:
Mix the dry ingredients - whole wheat flour, baking soda, sugar, chocolate chunks, cinnamon and nutmeg in a bowl.
Add the wet ingredients - pumpkin puree, milk and butter, and mix well.
Heat a pan on medium and pour a ladleful of the batter. Cook on each side for a couple of minutes or until each side turns a light brown.

Enjoy the pancakes with some powdered sugar, butter or maple syrup!

I'm submitting this recipe to B-O-O-O-O Halloween Event @ AnuzHealthyKitchen.


Lisa said...

What a fun fall afternoon! I love that you had a take-away recipe :)

Brandon @ Kitchen Konfidence said...

Those pancakes look perfect! I love the steaks of chocolate.


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