The first time I tried farinata, the baked chickpea pancake from Italy, it was dry as particleboard. The second and third times were just as bad. Only after I'd dismissed it as an inexplicably terrible product of the Italian kitchen did I finally taste the real thing, and then I understood why people loved it so much. Savory, custardy, and simple in the best possible way, it's also dead easy to make at home. Here's how.
'Pancake' on Serious Eats
Who ever said American pancakes have to be sweet? What's stopping us from savory-ing them up? That's exactly what these pancakes are. They start with a basic American-style pancake recipe, but they come stuffed with crisp bacon, sautéed corn, jalapeño peppers, scallions, and—the kicker—pockets of gooey melted cheddar cheese.
I have a good friend who often has the kind of ideas that only the intentional chemical expansion of the mind can bring about. That's where the idea of putting halloumi—the squeaky, salty, fry-able cheese from Cyprus—into American-style pancakes came about, and it was such a genius idea that I decided to run with it and make it my own. Adding some crisp chorizo and a fried egg makes these into pancakes that are worthy of a 2 a.m. binge or an elegant Sunday morning cocktail brunch.
Do you like dipping your bread into olive oil or using it to mop up the sauce on your plate? If so, then you need to know about testaroli, the Tuscan dish of crêpe-like pancakes that are treated like pasta and tossed with pesto sauce. Here's how to make them at home.
These aren't the easiest oatmeal pancakes, but they're damn good ones. Toasted oats, browned butter, tangy buttermilk, and a texture so light and fluffy it makes butts nervous about keeping their jobs.
Sweet potatoes, carrots, and acorn squash form a natural partnership--their flavors are complementary, but with enough variation to promise something a little more interesting than your typical root vegetable latke. Freshly grated ginger delivers a bright heat that cuts right through the vegetable base, which is rounded out with smoky paprika, a pinch of cumin, and some floral coriander.
Zucchini make a great latke base, but they also have a very delicate flavor that can easily be overwhelmed. Chopped basil and lemon zest help that light, grassy quality shine, while pine nuts and Parmesan cheese give it a pesto-inspired twist. These latkes are especially tender and refreshingly light.
These beet, potato, and onion latkes are studded with walnuts and garlic. A spoonful of horseradish sour cream cuts through the sweetness for a well-balanced finish.
Leftover mashed sweet potatoes are not easy to reheat and serve without turning them too dry or worse, scorching them on the bottom of a pan. Instead of trying, use them as the base for moist, tender, and delicious pancakes for breakfast.
This custardy European pancake, loaded with caramelized apples, is a stove-to-oven wonder that will rock your dessert...or brunch.
These fluffy, tender, and boozy pancakes give real meaning to "top o' the mornin to ya".
Pancakes drenched in syrup and butter are all well and good. But pancakes filled with savory cabbage and shrimp? Even better. Move over buttermilk, you've got competition.
After a few bites you'll feel warm and ready to tackle the cold. But because it's late in the day and the sauce is spiked, you can skip the chopping wood part, and instead plop down on the couch and fall asleep early.
Maple and pecans cooked together with brown sugar are reminiscent of pecan pie. These quick crepes make a fancy statement on the plate, but can be made with mostly pantry staples.
Carrot cake isn't for everyone, but for those who like the rich spiced cake, these quick pancakes hit all the right notes. They're just the thing to combat a dreary morning, with a bright flavor and comforting warmth that wakes up the palate.
Oatmeal adds hearty texture to these simple fall pancakes served with pan-roasted pears and pecans.
A gluten-free Dutch apple pancake.
Adding just a bit of rum to softly cooked pears plays off the fruit's natural flavor, without overshadowing them. Here, the mixture is folded into pancake batter, infusing every bite with a boozy, earthy sweetness.
Soft and light, these steamed rice and lentil cakes are a delicious alternative to the usual eggs for breakfast.
At once delicate and substantial, savory crêpes are perfectly suited for brunch. Softly scrambled eggs make a wonderful filling, especially with the addition of creamy goat cheese.