Poppy Seed Pancakes

Poppy Seed Pancakes Recipe

This freckled batch of fluffy buttermilk pancakes is punctuated with all manner of surprises. The recipe was inspired by a tiny pouch of Full Belly Farm poppy seeds hand-delivered to me by regular Mighty Foods contributer Rachel Cole. While the poppy seeds here are apparent, enveloped by the batter you'll also find deeply toasted sunflower seeds which lend a nutty depth to the pancakes you wouldn't get otherwise. I drizzled the lot with a chunky, orange and lemon-flecked, homemade citrus syrup.

Don't skimp on the poppy seeds, there's something irresistibly delightful about the role they play in these crowd-pleasing pancakes. I mean really, who can complain about the peppy crunch they lend to every bite of pancake or muffin they infiltrate?

And lastly, while I love this citrus-drizzled version of the recipe, you might certainly rework it into a delicious savory poppy seed pancake. You would just stir a few handfuls of anything from chopped sun-dried tomatoes, herbs, lemon zest, and/or crumbled cheese to chopped olives, cooked grains, or smashed roasted garlic into the batter. Replace the syrup with a generous slather of a creatively concocted compound butter and you're on your way.

Related links:
- Full Belly Farm
- Just noticed this informative Michael Ruhlman post on compound butter as well.

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Poppy Seed Pancake Recipe

If you can't find white whole wheat flour, feel free to substitute unbleached all-purpose flour. If you can't find agave nectar, substitute 1/4 cup sugar + 1/4 cup maple syrup, I use the light agave nectar for this recipe (it also comes in amber). You can also use whole wheat pastry flour in place of the other flours I've mentioned. I love cara cara oranges and use those when I can get them.

1- 2 oranges, peeled, segments torn into small pieces
1 lemon, peeled, segments torn into small pieces
1/3 cup agave nectar

2 cups white whole wheat flour (or unbleached a-p flour)
1 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1/3 cup poppy seeds
1/2 cup sunflower seeds, toasted until deeply golden
2 1/4 cups organic buttermilk
2 large organic eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons butter, melted

butter, to serve (and for pan)

To make the citrus syrup put the orange and lemon segments and agave nectar in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Heat and stir until the ingredents combine. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer for for 5 or 6 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

To make the pancakes combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, poppy seeds and sunflower seeds in a large bowl. Add the buttermilk, eggs and melted butter. Stir all the ingredients until they are just combined. Don't worry if the batter is a bit lumpy, you don't want to over mix.

Heat your skillet, pan, or griddle to medium-hot and brush it with a bit of butter. Test for the right temperature. If a drop of water dropped onto the pan starts to dance, you are in the ballpark. Pour about 1/3 of a cup of batter into the skillet. Wait until the pancake bottom is deep golden in color, then flip with a spatula and cook the other side until golden and cooked through. Repeat with the remaining batter. Serve with a golden pat of butter and a nice drizzle of syrup.

Makes about 12 large pancakes, or dozens of silver-dollar pancakes - enough to feed a small crowd.

If you make this recipe, I'd love to see it - tag it #101cookbooks on Instagram!

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  • Anytime I make pancakes, I automatically use a sourdough starter. I'm willing to bet it would be a nice twist on an already-delish dish.

  • Yummy--I can't wait to try these!! Alastair, if my memory serves me correctly from my stint in Ireland, buttermilk is called sour milk in the UK. I hope this helps you, I know the stuff is sold there. :)

  • Lovely picture and recipe! :) I love it! Btw, I made the power bars you posted in the previous post and substituted roasted unsalted soy nuts for the pecans and they were yummy. The pan I made on Friday is already gone.

  • Lovely picture and recipe! :) I love it!

  • wow! they look so fluffy and delicious!

    charlotte s
  • Poppy seed along with sunflower seeds in a w/w pancake---how good that sounds!

  • Hi Heidi- I just bought your book today. I had to after reading your blog. So beautiful... And these pancakes look terrific. I will certainly be making them! Thanks!

  • Oh, how nice! I love pancakes an poppy seeds but have never mixed the two together. Lately, I've had a thing for yeast pancakes made with buckwheat, but your pancakes might just bump them from the top spot :-)

  • Alastair... Buttermilk is basically just thinned yogurt. I do 2/3 cup yogurt, 1/3 cup milk to make a cup of buttermilk.

  • Lemon juice will sour the milk as well as vinegar, and adds a nice zing to the recipe. My Irish granny used to use milk when it had gone "off" to make soda bread - so that's another thing to bear in mind, but maybe it doesn't taste as nice nowadays!

  • Looks yummy! Alastair ... I don't use buttermilk often enough to buy it, so I fake it ... I put a teaspoon of white vinegar in a liquid measuring cup, and fill to the 1 cup line. (Not sure what measurements you would use.) Let the milk/vinegar sit at room temp while you prep your other ingredients, and there you go.

  • Buttermilk? Where can you find buttermilk in England?

  • those look festive! There are just so many ways to make pancakes -- who'd known?

  • WOW. The combination of poppy seeds and orange is beautiful to me, and as it so happens, I just posted a few hours ago an Orange - Poppy seed Biscotti recipe in my Blog.. Sounds delicious, will try it soon!

  • I've been craving poppy seed muffins for awhile now and this looks like a very happy alternative. The citrus syrup sounds like a great combination, too! I'm excited to try these tomorrow.

  • What a GREAT idea! Whole-wheat pancakes and poppyseed muffins in one fell swoop :) Can you say more about aluminum-free baking powder?

  • Looks so engaging, too bad it's not breakfast time yet. Heidi I would like to know if I can feature my version of your animal crackers recipe on my blog? Thx

  • wow...i was just planning to make your pancakes with blueberry maple syrup..i was coming on the site to find the recipe.. (haha i slept in) (u gotta love presedents day =))anyway...these look way wonderful and i also have a bag of cara cara oranges i got a few days ago when i was stocking up on healthy stuff for the week. thanx again ..and i LOVE the pix =)

  • wow...i was just planning to make your pancakes with blueberry maple syrup..i was coming on the site to find the recipe.. (haha i slept in) (u gotta love presedents day =))anyway...these look way wonderful and i also have a bag of cara cara oranges i got a few days ago when i was stocking up on healthy stuff for the week. thanx again ..and i LOVE the pix =)

  • yum, i love whole wheat pancakes filled with crunchy goodness, and that syrup looks luscious - i've been wanting to try working with agave syrup.

    michelle @ Us vs. Food
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