Pancakes with Caramelized Carrots

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I had a dream.

Sadly, there was nothing about human rights. Not even the RH Bill. It involved a plate of pancakes and an “almost butterscotch” sauce. I call it “almost butterscotch” because I vividly remember that there was no cream involved. Glazed with the liquid gold that is the mixture of sugar and butter, were thin slices of carrots. Carrots. Then I woke up and I was so hungry.

I dreamt about it a few weeks ago, even before I started cooking school. It was around the time my blog celebrated its first year of existence. During that time, being with the people from The Maya Kitchen for half a day probably had a hand at shaping the course my slumber. They were generous enough to give me a swag bag of their products to boot!

Then there I was this morning, having been woken up by the noise of my phone. It was my mom, reminding me that it was her and dad’s anniversary today. She apparently bought a cake and made it look like it came from me. I didn’t raise a single cent. I love my mom and dad. (Happy anniversary folks!)

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But what the heck, I thought. Today was the perfect day to make my dreams come true (HAHAHA CORNY! forgive me). I had a few carrots chilling in the fridge, and a few perfectly portioned pancake mixes from Maya. Although the key here is convenience, making your own pancakes from scratch is also rewarding, especially if you wake up feeling like a boss.

And let me address the issue that might be swirling in your head right now – “why the hell would I put carrots on top of my pancakes?” Well, ye of little faith, give this a shot. Despite being laden with butter and sugar, I used coconut sugar which is great for diabetics. Since it makes sense to eat carrot cake, why can’t it make sense to eat pancakes with carrots? I could go on and on, but I’m taking too much of your time. Just go ahead and make this already!

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Pancakes with Caramelized Carrots (serves 2 – 3)
  • 1 medium-sized carrot, peeled and sliced thinly
  • 1 200-gram pack instant whole wheat pancake mix (I used Maya Kitchen) or make your own buttermilk pancakes and just add oats!
  • 4 – 5 tablespoons coconut sugar (or: use dark brown sugar)
  • 1/4 cup butter (a quarter of a regular sized butter block)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • a pinch of salt
  1. Cook the pancakes according to package instructions. When done, set aside.
  2. Make the caramelized carrots: combine the butter and sugar in a small bowl/pan over really low heat. Allow the butter and sugar to melt and stir everything together. Add the carrot slices.
  3. Cook the carrots in the butter and sugar over low heat for around 3 – 5 minutes. If the butter or sugar starts to show signs of burning, remove it from the heat source or make sure that it’s cooking over really low heat. (I didn’t have this problem but it’s good to be careful)
  4. Add the vanilla extract and the salt. Mix well. When done, top the carrots and the sauce over the pancakes. Serve warm and enjoy!

9 mornings: Buttermilk Pancakes with Coconut Syrup

My mom’s ninang is an amazing baker. She makes the best puto maya I’ve ever tasted. It’s basically sticky rice wrapped in a banana leaf topped with shredded coconut and muscovado sugar. Admittedly, what I look forward to isn’t really the puto maya itself, but the toppings. There’s something about muscovado sugar (unrefined brown sugar with a strong flavor akin to molasses)  that gets me riled up in a good way. The sensation of biting into these large clumps of sugar, melting in your mouth spreading the strong, almost overpowering sweetness, is priceless. So when puto maya isn’t available, I might as well wolf down a heaping tablespoon of muscovado and it’s Christmas day in my head

Yesterday, I was pretty beat up after making those cupcakes. I have yet to fill all 54 pieces with crushed peaches. I told myself that I really have to make something easy today, or else I’ll crash and burn.

So what could be more easy than simple syrup? Coconut syrup to be exact. What makes this recipe simple is that I used coconut milk in a tetra pack, eliminating the need to go to your neighborhood vegetable stand and buy coconut shreds. I could have just easily bragged that I went the extra mile and extracted coconut milk from scratch but no, I was pretty lazy today.
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But I wasn’t too lazy to the point that I didn’t look for something to pour the syrup over. Bananas were the obvious choice because Sareala (banana slices cooked in coconut milk and muscovado) is also something common in our household. Pretty obvious but the combination lacked ‘oomph’. Pancakes? Buttermilk pancakes? Now you’re talking.
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I’ve been meaning to post my recipe for buttermilk pancakes for a while now. Today I hit two birds with one stone. These pancakes aren’t too sweet, which we like. This makes for a really great easy afternoon snack.
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You don’t even have to wait for the holidays to partake in the festivities. These are fun pancakes yo. They dance, sing and jump for joy (haha). Well not really: I did the  jumping.
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Buttermilk Pancakes (makes around eight 4 inch pancakes) adapted from Joy of Baking

  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk (in a pinch: 1 cup milk and ½ tablespoon vinegar)
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ – ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 – 3 tablespoons melted butter plus more for greasing the pan.
  1. In a medium sized bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs and buttermilk. Add the sugar and melted butter. Whisk until sugar dissolves.
  3.  Add the egg-milk mixture into the flour mixture by making a well at the center of the bowl. Whisk together until the batter is mixed well but STILL SLIGHTLY LUMPY.
  4. Grease a nonstick pan with the melted butter over medium heat. Gently ladle batter (around 60 ml or ¼ cup) into the pan. When the surface starts to bubble, after 2 – 3 minutes, gently turn the pancake over. Cook the remaining side until lightly browned, around 1 minute. Remove from heat and serve with the coconut syrup.

Coconut syrup

  • 200 ml coconut milk (around 3/4ths cup give or take)
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons muscovado sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in ¼ cup water
  1. In a small pot, combine everything except cornstarch.
  2. Heat over medium flame until it bubbles.
  3. Add the cornstarch and regularly stir to prevent the liquid from burning.
  4. Adjust sweetness to your liking. When thick and slightly reduced, remove from heat and drizzle over pancakes.

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But don’t jump for joy too much though. There’s so much going on in this world that tragedy really sobers us up. It may bring forth so much physical and emotional destruction, but in the wake of all of mayhem, the goodness of people also shines.

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