This savory pancake recipe comes from the pancake tasting menu that I made in Los Angeles a few months ago, and it has its original inspiration in Los Angeles, too--all starting from this garlic-chive goat cheese spread.
^My best friend, in Malibu, post garlic-chive goat cheese picnic
Every once in a while, I head down to LA to visit my best friend who's there studying Important Medical Stuff. Every time I'm there, without fail, she asks me to make this goat cheese spread, which we "invented" during my first Thanksgiving visit back in 2008. (OMG, 2008 sounds like so long ago!) And I totally know why she does--because it's GOOD. Like, on everything. We slather this garlic, chive-y, creamy goodness on basically everything that we can get our hands on, from crackers to leftover Persian lamb wraps. It even tastes better by the beach. (Because, really, what doesn't? ;-P)
So when it came time to come up with a savory pancake to accompany all of the sweet ones on the pancake tasting menu during this past visit, I reached for the foremost thing sitting in her fridge that I could think of: our tub of garlic-chive goat cheese spread. The rest of the pancake idea fell right into place with all of our loot from the awesome Wednesday morning Santa Monica Farmers' Market: rosemary and sugar snap peas. (Thankfully, also, we've been having a really long pea season this year on the West Coast. I'm still seeing loads of fresh peas at the farmers' markets in my area!)
While this isn't the first time I've put rosemary in pancakes, it is the first time I've paired them in a savory pancake dish, and I love the way they, along with the robustness of the whole wheat, worked out, providing a wonderfully herb-y undertone to the whole dish. The garlic-chive goat cheese spread packs most of the punch and flavor here. Finally, fresh, crispy sugar snap peas lightly steamed and tossed in a bit of olive oil and salt add the perfect textural crunch and snapiness to lighten up the creamy goat cheese and dense whole wheat pancakes underneath.
Note that the recipe provided for the garlic-chive goat cheese spread below might yield more goat cheese than you'll need for the pancakes. But, don't fret! Grab some crackers or a baguette or a Persian wrap (I know, some will call me sacrilegious!) and your leftover goat cheese will disappear before you know it.
Read on for recipe...
Garlic-chive goat cheese spread
8 oz. goat cheese
2 cloves garlic, finely minced (see tip below)
2 Tbspn chives, chopped finely (see tip below)
salt, to taste
1. In a bowl, mash together the goat cheese, garlic, and chives with a fork until well-combined.
2. Salt to taste.
Tip: How much garlic to add will actually depend on how pungent your garlic is, so the best way is to flavor to taste.
Tip: The easiest way to chop chives is to bundle them together with a rubber band and cut small pieces from the bundle using kitchen shears. Move the rubber band as needed.
Whole wheat rosemary pancakes with garlic-chive goat cheese and fresh peas
makes ~12 - 15 silver dollar pancakes
8 (1/2) oz. whole milk*
1/2 stick butter, melted
8 oz. whole wheat AP flour
2 tspn baking powder
1 tspn salt
2 heaping Tbspn fresh rosemary, chopped finely
peas, shelled (English or sugar snap)
1. Combine milk, eggs, and melted butter in a bowl and whisk thoroughly.
2. Add the whole wheat flour, baking powder, and salt and mix until smooth. Batter should be thick and just barely runny, but if it's too thick and difficult to stir, thin it with an extra dash of milk (this might especially be the case because of the whole wheat flour. Use 1/4 - 1/2 oz. milk extra if needed).
3. Mix the chopped rosemary into the batter.
4. Oil lightly a medium hot skillet. Cook the pancakes slowly over medium heat.
5. Meanwhile, steam the peas over boiling water for two minutes or until they turn bright green.
6. Remove the peas from the steam immediately and run under cold water. Toss with olive oil and salt to taste.
7. Serve the pancakes with a dollop of garlic-chive goat cheese and a mound of freshly cooked peas.