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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Pumpkin Ricotta Cheese Pancakes

Pancakes remind me of our cabin in the mountains. There is something about the smell of pancakes, syrup and bacon (cuz you can' t have pancakes without bacon!) and the way it plays of the fresh chilly outdoors with the river tumbling in the background and the pine trees creaking in the wind. Ah, that is the life.

Meanwhile, back in the city, I wanted pancakes but they needed a twist- something that sets them apart and helps fill the void of the crisp outdoors. At the restaurant, we made Ricotta Cheese Pancakes; sweet, moist pancakes. These are not like typical pancakes. They are extremely delicate and often hard to maneuver until you get used to them. And the insides are extremely moist and completely melt in your mouth. Delicious. Having some extra pumpkin in the fridge brought it all together. These are fun enough to have in the summer too- not reason to wait until the fall.

Some tips on how to handle these pancakes: You will whip the egg whites, and then gently fold them in into the batter. Dollop them onto a hot, well greased pan, you may need to slightly spread them out. Do not touch until the bottom is set- then in one quick motion- you need to swoop up the pancake in one scoop and flip it- no hesitation. Keep a paper towel close by and wipe your spatula off after each flip. These pancakes will remain tall and extremely moist.

When I say moist- I really mean moist. You may even think these are not fully cooked- but don't be nervous- you'll require no butter and less syrup, but these are sweet none the less. It's a great way to start the morning, perfect to sit on your balcony and watch the traffic roll by; the honking of the horns will just make you slip into the pancakes that much more. The city is a wilderness all it's own and these pancakes fit right in. Be fat and happy in the city.

Pumpkin Ricotta Cheese Pancakes

Made about 18 medium-sized pancakes

3 eggs separated

3/4 cup ricotta cheese
3/4 cup pureed pumpkin, canned is fine
1/8 cup sugar (white)
4 Tbls brown sugar
3 Tbls flour (sift in)
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
pinch nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground clove
pinch of allspice
pinch of salt

Mix the egg yolks with all the remaining ingredients. Whip the egg whites until stiff; fold into the pumpkin mixture.

Drop spoonfuls onto a hot, greased griddle. Carefully flip. Serve immediately with warm syrup.

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