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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Chai spiced pumpkin pancakes

This has been breakfast in our home for the last two mornings, and on her way out the door my daughter asked if she can have more after school :) I think its safe to say that almost every cook out there can relate when I say my heart sang with joy at that ultimate stamp of approval. The rule in my house is if I made it, they eat it, whether or not they like it. So when a dish gets a request to be after day...I know I have a winner.

This recipe is loosely adapted from my trusted Alice's Teacup cookbook. One of the things I changed is the type of tea used (another was completely removing the butter and also reducing the quantity of fat required). Spicing these pancakes with ground Chai adds another layer of flavor that takes them over the top. Chai tea includes warm flavors (like cinnamon, cloves and cardamom) and these spices pair beautifully with pumpkin. If you don't have Chai tea leaves at home, use a vanilla/honey flavored tea (nothing fruity please) or just increase the spices a bit listed in the recipe.

These are easy to customize, and I've tried a variety of favorites are pecan pieces, chocolate, butterscotch or cinnamon chips. When I add chocolate chips the pancakes become sweet enough to eat without syrup, but otherwise I add maple syrup and indulge in the perfect fall breakfast.

Makes about 16 medium sized pancakes

-2 teaspoons chai tea (I buy these as bagged tea and use 2 satchels)
-2 cups flour
-1/3 cup brown sugar
-2 teaspoons baking soda
-1 tablespoon baking powder
-1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
-2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
-1 teaspoon salt
-2 cups buttermilk*
-5 tablespoons vegetable oil
-4 eggs
-2 cups canned pumpkin
-optional add ins: variety of chocolate chips, dried fruit or nuts

To make
-Grind tea leaves in a coffee or spice grinder until they become a fine powder.
-Mix together ground tea, flour, sugra, baking soda, baking poser, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt in a large bowl.
-One by one, to the dry ingredients add the buttermilk, oil, eggs and pumpkin, mixing the batter after each ingredient is added.
-Let the batter rest for 15 minutes. Once the time is up, stir the batter and let it rest for another 15 minutes. Mix in optional add ins at this time.
-Preheat a frying pan or griddle on medium heat and add about 1/4 cup of batter. Let the pancake cook, untouched, for about 2 minutes or until it bubbles and starts to look dry. Carefully flip the pancake over and cook for about another 2 minutes.
-Serve with maple syrup and enjoy!

*Use the rest of your buttermilk to make coconut almond chocolate muffins or pumpkin chocolate cupcakes with pumpkin cream cheese frosting!

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