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Chocolate Filled Buttermilk Pancakes Recipe by Bridget Harney

Chocolate filled buttermilk pancakes represent the perfect balance of tangy and sweet for me. While pancakes topped with chocolate sauce are certainly good, nothing beats a liquid gooey chocolate centre. It’s full on, unadulterated chocolate, melted. Combined with peanut butter or caramel, these pancakes are truly indulgent. I’ve even made them with dime bars! The sky is the limit when it comes to filling options. They make an amazing breakfast or brunch, and are perfect weekend treat.

These pancakes are quick to make, and are better if they are cooked immediately. It isn’t the type of batter that needs to be thin and lump free. It is, instead, a thick batter where a few lumps make little difference. The main thing is to not over beat it or else it will be tough. It needs to be a thick batter to form the small American style pancakes, and to properly coat whatever filling you place inside. These pancakes work really well with gluten free flour too.

I am continuing my one woman campaign to advocate for buttermilk. It is creamy and tangy and adds the perfect note to sweet and savoury dishes. I love it in brown bread, red velvet cakes, scones and mashed potatoes. Buttermilk suffers from the assumption that it is full of fat. It is, in fact, far lower in fat than milk, as it is what is left after the butter is churned and removed. Buttermilk is generally thick and rich as it is cultured, much like yogurt. Yoghurt mixed with milk is a good substitute for this recipe if you can’t get your hands on buttermilk. I like thick cultured buttermilk, but you can sometimes get traditional buttermilk that is literally what is left after the butter is made. This is a thinner liquid but still tangy and delicious!

This recipe is really versatile and fun, a little twist on a familiar treat.

Ingredients
200g of plain flour (gluten free works well)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon of bread soda/bicarbonate of soda
1 egg
275ml buttermilk (This works for thick buttermilk, but use a bit less if your buttermilk is thinner)
squares of chocolate
jam
thin slices of fruit
peanut butter (or other nut butters)
chocolate spread
caramel sweets

Savoury Variation
Replace half the flour with cooked mashed potatoes. Add a tablespoon of freshly chopped scallions, spring onions, or fresh herbs if you wish. Prepare as below. These are nice topped with sour cream and salmon, but can be filled with grated cheese or finely chopped cooked meat. Also delicious served with scrambled eggs!

Method
1. Sieve or thoroughly mix the flour, bread soda and salt in a large bowl. Use a wooden spoon to make a hole or well in the centre of the flour.
2. Break an egg into this well. Break it up with the wooden spoon and stir small bits of flour into the egg until it forms a thick paste.
3. Gradually add the buttermilk to the mix, pulling in more and more flour as your mix. Don’t worry if there are a few lumps, you don’t want to over mix the batter. The batter should be very thick but pour easily from a spoon.
4. Heat a frying pan, preferably non stick over a moderately high heat. Add a little flavourless oil if you don’t fully trust the non stick surface!
5. Spoon, ladle or pour about two tablespoons of mix onto the pan. I normally fit about 3 pancakes on my pan. Let it cook for about a minute.
6. Then place your filling of choice onto the centre of the pancake. It’s best not to put too much filling in as it will probably just leak out and burn on the pan. I know it’s tempting to put loads in but resist!
7. Spoon on another spoonful of pancake batter on top of the filling. Let the pancake continue cooking until there are bubbles around the edges and the base is cooked enough to turn them.
8. Turn or flip them using a fish slice or spatula. It takes a bit of practise to keep them tidy.
9. Cook until golden brown and cooked through.
10. Serve with honey or maple syrup, or even more chocolate sauce if you like! I love them with yoghurt and berries!

 

RECIPE BY BRIDGET HARNEY

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I have baked for as long as I can remember. I grew up on an organic farm in County Wicklow and Maura Laverty’s ‘Full and Plenty’ was my guide in developing the basic skills and knowledge around food. It was this manual and my surroundings that nurtured an interest in local foods and a desire to use familiar ingredients in a creative way.

I work as an Occupational Therapist in the Mental Health services and have always valued the relaxation and pleasure that baking can bring. Since competing in the Great Irish Bake Off 2013, I have had new opportunities to bake for a café and write my blog, The Search for Delicious. Baking is still an important part of my personal life, but since doing the show I have a great opportunity to share my recipes and food with people outside my circle of friends and family. I hope to develop recipes that are familiar but different, comfortable but still exciting, and am always delighted when someone tries one of my recipes!

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