Beautiful Breakfast: Violet Pancakes
Happy Friday, everyone!
What better way to ring in the weekend than treating ourselves to a lovely flower-filled breakfast? How do violet pancakes drizzled with violet-infused maple syrup sound to you? Hopefully the idea tickles your taste buds, because that’s just what I was in the mood for yesterday. I took some snapshots along the way and put together a little recipe for you guys, should you want to give it a go at home. There are lots of edible flowers out there, violets being one of them. The key to choosing healthy blossoms is to make sure that you chose flowers from an area void of pesticides, herbicides, heavy traffic, dog pee, or animal droppings. Piece of (pan)cake, right?
The wild violets (viola odorata) are at their peak right now, the sprawling mounds of attractive green leaves topped with a multitude of fragrant purple flowers. When the weather warms up, you can really enjoy their sweet scent… even more-so if you snip a few to bring inside where the warmth allows even a small bunch to perfume a whole room. When these little beauties are in full bloom, it’s hard to resist the urge to cook up a project or two centered around the delicious properties the wild violets naturally possess. Last year I cooked up a batch of violet syrup, but I felt that a new year calls for something fresh and different…
Pancakes! Yes! Who can say no to a plate full of pancakes?
I started off by bringing a small pot of maple syrup to a boil before tossing in a handful of violet flowers (trimmed as closely to the flower as possible and rinsed in water). I let the flowers and syrup simmer together for about 15 minutes before turning off the heat. One the syrup had cooled down, it was time to strain the liquid from the flowers and put it back in the fridge to sit. Even this short infusion time was enough to give the syrup a really pleasant violet aroma. Yum!
Then it was time to whip up a batch of pancakes!
My go-to recipe for American-style pancakes is: 1.5 cups flour, 1 tablespoon sugar, 3 teaspoons baking soda, 1 teaspoon salt, 1.25 cups milk, 2 tablespoons melted butter, and 1 egg. Mix the ingredients all together in no particular order before spooning small scoops into a greased and heated pan.
After you’ve spooned your batter into the pan, gently press the individual flowers on top of the batter. Be careful not to press too hard, because if they get covered in batter, they will disappear once flipped. Cook the pancakes thoroughly on the non-flower side before flipping the pancakes for just a moment. The idea is to give them some slight color while not over-cooking the flowers. For me, about 30 seconds over a medium heat did the trick.
Put them on a plate, drizzle with your violet-infused syrup… and, voila! You’ve got yourself a beautiful springtime breakfast that’s just as much a treat for the eyes as it is for the taste buds.
Just in case you’re curious, the violets in the pancakes don’t pack much flavor. The majority of the characteristic violet taste comes from the violet-infused maple syrup. It’s a nice and easy way to add the sweeten foods with a violet flavor… a simple alternative to violet syrup.
I hope you enjoyed our little Friday feast! If you have some violets growing in your garden, this could very well be worth giving a try this weekend :)
Whether you indulge in violet pancakes or not, I wish you all a wonderful weekend!