the hell is a Protein Pancake???
For the record I am a real chef. A trained chef trained to make pancakes with flour, eggs and milk, like everyone else. However, as of late, I have been brainwashed by the Beverly Hills society I cook for. Alright, an exaggeration, but I have found myself adopting some of their trends, such as judging juice bars (who cares???) And more importantly, making Protein Pancakes. As much as grading juice bars does not matter, what matters to me are the weird and wonderful trends that make sense in my kitchen and, to be frank, shrink midsection muffin-tops. Shall we begin?
Protein Pancakes are so ubiquitous, if ubiquitous can even be so, that if you go on Pinterest this very moment, you can scroll through hundreds of variations for ten minutes. That’s the level of popularity they are having. And the current favorite in Beverly Hills is the Banana Protein Pancake. Every tweenager in the #BH is begging their housekeeper and chef to save the ripe bananas for them. The uglier, the better. In fact, I have been stockpiling bananas and organic farm fresh eggs for the past six months. Low on calories and high on protein and nutrients they are perfect for post-workout breakfast. Here are the three ingredients in what I will now refer to as the Beverly Hills Banana Protein Pancake:
- 1 Very Ripe Banana
- 1 Egg
- 1/4 Cup Rolled Oats
At first, I ignored the recipe when it showed up in my Vita- Prep blender (and in my sink) at the estate where I am the chef. Busy with work, I had been wondering what the after-school kids were up to in the other kitchen, when they brought me a plateful of weirdly shaped pancakes. I was stunned.
No flour? I questioned.
NO FLOUR, they replied.
No Sugar? I asked.
UH, NO! They replied.
SO WHAT IS THIS??? I demanded.
Only three ingredients, they shouted. I almost lost my balance.
OK. Show me. Make me this madness…
And they did, flipping pancakes and talking at high RPMs about calories per serving; what healthy fats to spray in the non-stick skillet before measuring out each pancake; all this, wearing the most exclusive pilates wear. And me– looking down at my own beautifully pressed chef coat, thinking, it’s not too shabby, but…
… later, as I began to plot my own mission back to gorgeousness and pilate pants, I knew this pancake would be on my breakfast menu. Already, the staff (housekeepers) are trading their versions in the staff lounge. In fact, it was a housekeeper’s version that began the Protein Pancake Marathon that was to become my life… Just two ingredients:
- 1 Very Ripe Banana
- 1 Egg
Over the past couple of months, many of you have witnessed my many versions of this pancake on my Instagram feed @Stovetopped. Double Banana with Toasted Walnuts; the Butternut Squash and Toasted almonds; the more delicate Banana Crepe filled with Fresh Raspberries… I can’t believe I haven’t tired of it. It’s very good, in all its incarnations. Just this morning I was inspired again by some very ripe persimmons a friend had given me; that’s when the Silver Dollar Pancakes came to mind. It’s Thanksgiving week and the color and seasonality of it all made me think of making something special, such as a crispy edged tower of Persimmon Silver Dollars with the faint taste of cinnamon and nutmeg. A nutritious and delicious tower to start your day. I only wish I had had one more persimmon to slice on top; or had pomegranate seeds to shower over it. But quite honestly, they are good just as they are.
Ingredients for one or two personal stacks
- 1 Ripe (soft) Persimmon
- 1 Egg
- Pinch of Cinnamon
- Pinch of Nutmeg
- Pinch of Kosher Salt
- 1 TBS Coconut Oil
- Big Non-Stick Skillet
Here we go!
All you need is one very ripe persimmon: trimmed, skinned and chopped, as seen here. Any type of ripe persimmon will suffice. This guy is a Cinnamon Variety, from the Hachiya family. Barely sweet, persimmons must be showcased and not overshadowed by bold flavors and bold textures because they are mild in flavor and can be unidentifiable. They are best in baked goods. And since they are an autumnal fruit, they pair really well with cinnamon and nutmeg… I added a pinch of each in this recipe.
In a hot non-stick skillet, heat a tablespoon of coconut oil and carefully glaze the plan with the fat, sure to cover the entire surface. Pour small portions of the batter into the hot fat and let them be. One to two minutes on low to medium heat should create a nice shape and color.
These pancakes pictured below are ready to be flipped. The edges are browned and the egg is set. Flip gently and cook another minute or less.
Et Voila! Stack them high and dress with freshly sliced persimmon, or any syrup, although the entire point of this cake is its low glycemic value and healthy nutrition and protein.
A final note: the Beverly Hills Banana Protein Pancake method is the same. Make a giant cake and flip it; the recipe has more oomph than these delicate dollars. Enjoy!