Egg in pancakes — an odd combination that works.
My Bin says that this is a dish he doesn’t understand. It’s a pancake sandwich, essentially a fried egg (or sunnyside up, if you please) ensconced comfortably in between two pancakes. Bin says he doesn’t understand how eggs and pancakes can go together. I say “why not?” The pancake sandwich is a specialty of Pancake House, the Filipino counterpart to an IHOP (International House of Pancakes) or any other all-day breakfast joint.
I adore eggs in any shape or form, which is why I don’t understand people who don’t feel the same way. When I was at culinary school, I once told my chef-instructor that I preferred my eggs soft-cooked. Her reply, “Isn’t that for old, sick people?” (!) Then there’s this body builder at the gym who a few times a week, goes to breakfast at the nearby Jollibee, (McDonald’s biggest competitor in the Philippines) and orders four, count ”˜em four eggs, but only eats the whites. He once sat next to me and when I saw all his egg yolk wastage, I offered to eat them for him, cholesterol be damned.
Anyway, this pancake sandwich isn’t really as odd as it looks. I can barely even taste the egg because it’s drowned in all the maple-flavored syrup that I douse it in. I always make sure to tell the waiter that I want my egg cooked ”˜til just barely set. I’m a sucker for wet yolks — that golden liquid oozing out languidly, onto the plate and into my mouth. Oooh.
But I digress.
The pancakes that Pancake House serves are fluffy and light. They specifically state on their menu that a special method is followed to get them that way, so please allow a ten minute wait. From what I know of ingredients and how they work with another, I’d venture to say that light and fluffy pancakes get that way because of two factors: a wet batter and the right combination of leavener.
Without getting too technical, if your pancakes are turning out like leaden blocks, try making them again, but this time with a combination of buttermilk and whole milk. Your batter should be pourable and not so thick that it needs to be spooned onto the pan. In addition, use a combination of baking powder and baking soda. The baking powder gives the pancake its rise and the baking soda works with the acid in the buttermilk to open up the crumb of the pancake.
Also, don’t forget that pancakes are a type of quick bread (like banana bread, muffins, and the like), which benefit greatly from dumping the wet ingredients into the dry and mixing only ”˜til just incorporated. Use a light hand, and light and fluffy pancakes will be yours.