It was at the Nashville breakfast joint Pancake Pantry where I was introduced to pancake perfection--the Village Smithy COLO Sante Fe Cornmeal Pancakes. They take stone-ground cornmeal pancakes and fill them with cheddar cheese chunks, crispy bacon and roasted green chiles. Just a drizzle of maple syrup over the top adds a sticky sweetness, but the main garnish for me was a swirl of salsa and sour cream. For a gal who prefers savory over sweet, these hit all the right notes complete with the spiciness I desire from the green chiles and salsa.
So when I set out to recreate the recipe at home, I wanted the chunks of Sante Fe goodness like I had found in the Pancake Pantry batch inside a cornmeal pancake. I found success with a Bon Appétit recipe for cornmeal buttermilk pancakes. One important thing to keep in mind is to not overmix the batter because the pancakes can get dense. It's better to leave a few clumps in the batter for an overall lighter pancake.
Sometimes when adding ingredients into pancakes, they can fall to the bottom of the batter. To combat that, I individually added the filling ingredients while the pancakes were cooking, like this:
So first, pour the batter into the pan, and while that side of the pancake cooks, add in the ingredients. For these Santa Fe-inspired pancakes, use diced green chiles, bacon chunks, sliced scallions, diced jalapenos, and cheddar cheese slices. The end result is a spectacular pancake creation worthy of any brunch.
- For the pancakes:
- 3/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour
- 3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 13/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
- 2 large eggs
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, cooled
- Canola oil or cooking spray
- For the pancake filling:
- 6 slices cooked bacon, crumbled
- 1 (7-ounce) can chopped roasted green chiles
- 2 scallions, chopped
- 2 to 3 jalapenos, finely chopped
- 4 ounce cheddar cheese, sliced
Sift flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt into large bowl.
In a medium bowl, whisk buttermilk, eggs and melted butter.
Add buttermilk mixture to dry ingredients and whisk until blended and smooth. (Note: Be careful not to overmix.)
Lightly coat bottom of nonstick large skillet with cooking spray or oil. Heat over medium heat. Working in batches, pour 1/4 cup batter into skillet.
Working quickly, distribute a small amount of bacon, green chiles, scallions, jalapeños and cheddar cheese throughout the cooking pancake.
Once the bottom of the pancake is golden, after about 1 1/2 minutes, turn pancakes and cook until second sides are golden, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
Repeat with remaining batter and remaining pancake filling until done.