Sunday, February 7, 2010

PotW: Orange-clove chocolate chip pancakes with coffee-clove syrup

What do you get when you put together orange, clove, chocolate chips, and coffee beans?

How about a morning wake-up call, in pancake form?

Say "good morning" to these orange-clove, chocolate chip pancakes, with a side of coffee-clove syrup.  Yup.  That's how we started our weekend here at the house, because *that's* how we roll.

Every time I've been at the market recently, I've been bombarded with gorgeous citrus fruits of all sorts, from countless varieties of tangerines to juicy, thin-skinned meyer lemons to absolutely blood-red blood oranges.  Oh, the glory of citrus season!  It's always so incredibly difficult to resist returning home without at least a bag or two of a few oranges, lemons, or grapefruits.  Our fruit bowls have been constantly overfilling with citruses--I even get these great lemons on campus, where all of the citrus trees are bountifully fruitful right now.  (I always try to stuff my bag with a few whenever I'm biking through the History Corner.)

Given this overabundance of oranges that have been rolling about our kitchen table for the past few weeks, I decided to whip up some orange-flavored pancakes for breakfast this weekend.  Since it's been cold and wet almost non-stop for the past few weeks, the wintery clove seemed to be a natural companion for the oranges.  Then, my thoughts turned to chocolate--little hints of melty, gooey, sweetness--to go with the tartness of the citrus and the spiciness of the cloves.

Finally, as I bent down over the mortar and pestle to get a whiff of the cloves, coffee suddenly popped to mind!  Now, I don't really drink much coffee, but the earthy darkness of a strongly brewed coffee would be perfect with the cloves, orange, and chocolate, so I whipped up a bowl of coffee syrup, adding a handful of whole cloves in to further tie together the flavors.

The final result?  A bold and fragrant blend of juicy orange and spicy clove, a kick of coffee, with just a dash of decadent chocolate mixed in for a sublime start to a wintery, cold weekend.  A perfect breakfast in bed.

Happy Monday, all!

Coffee-clove syrup
makes ~1/2 cup of coffee syrup

1/2 cup whole milk
1 cup whole coffee beans
4 Tbspn instant coffee powder, or instant espresso powder
2 Tbspn whole cloves
1/2-2/3 cup sugar
1 tspn corn starch

1. In a saucepan over medium heat, heat the milk, coffee beans, instant coffee/espresso powder, and whole cloves until the milk comes to a simmer.  Cover and remove from heat, letting the mixture steep for ten minutes.
2. Return the saucepan to medium heat, adding the remainder of the coffee beans.  Bring to a simmer, simmer for a minute or two.
3. Using a fine mesh strainer, strain out the coffee beans and cloves, leaving the milk.
4. Return the milk to the saucepan.  Whisk in the sugar and corn starch.  Bring to a gentle boil and simmer for a minute longer until the mixture has thickened.

Orange-clove chocolate chip pancakes
makes 18-21 silver dollar pancakes

1 heaping Tbspn whole cloves
4 oz. freshly squeezed orange juice
2 Tbspn freshly grated orange zest
4 oz. whole milk
2 eggs
1/2 stick butter, melted
2-4 drops orange gel food coloring, if desired
8 oz. flour
2 Tbspn sugar
2 tspn baking powder
1 tspn salt
mini chocolate chips

1. Using a mortar and pestle (or a spice grinder), crush the whole cloves finely.  Set aside.
2. Combine orange juice, zest, whole milk, eggs, melted butter, and food coloring (if using) in a bowl and whisk thoroughly.
3. Add dry ingredients and the crushed cloves. Mix until smooth. (If the batter is too thick, thin it with a little splash of milk.)
4. Oil lightly a medium hot skillet and cook the pancakes, adding in a sprinkle of chocolate chips to the batter when you place it on the griddle.

Serve the pancakes with coffee-clove syrup on the side for dipping, or pour the coffee-clove syrup on top.



  1. Oh my goodness...those look fabulous! What a great combo of flavors (and pictures!)

  2. You take awesome photos! Oh, and the pancakes look rustic & really delicious...

  3. aha! breakfast tomorrow. yep, the fiancee will love me.

    cheers and thanks,



I love hearing from you and reading your comments! Thanks so much for stopping by the blog. Happy feasting!