Regret can be a tedious roommate to live with – some days are hard to slog through under the weight of it, other days I’ll find it has packed itself away in a closet, leaving me to get on with things.
I almost always get restaurant regret – since I was a kid I find myself wishing I had ordered whatever I see going by as I eat whatever it is I thought looked best at the time.
I know better now than to order pancakes when we go out for breakfast. I’m always lured by the short stack with a promise of butter, syrupy fruit and whipped cream – I’d never go so far at home – but inevitably leave feeling (appropriately) as if I’ve eaten half a cake. I prefer the grainier pancakes we have at home – this week it’s been barley pancakes, not too tweedy, but made with barley flour in place of the usual all-purpose. I find comfort in making pancakes – it makes me feel on top of things, as if I’m completely on the ball and I’ve already accomplished something first thing in the morning, regardless of the size of my to-do list. I should start adding “make pancakes” to it so I have something to scratch off.
With blueberries from the freezer, simmered with sugar or maple syrup until they pop.
Blueberry Barley Pancakes
One of everything makes enough for 4 big pancakes – it’s easy to double the recipe for more.
1 cup barley flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 cup milk
1 large egg
1 Tbsp. canola oil (or other mild veg oil – plus extra for cooking)
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
sugar to taste (a couple tablespoonsish)
In a medium bowl, whisk together the barley flour, baking powder and salt. Add the milk, egg and oil and whisk just until combined.
Set a heavy skillet over medium-high heat, drizzle with oil and wipe it around the pan with a paper towel. Reduce the heat to medium-low, pour in about 1/4 of the batter and cook until bubbles start to break through and the surface looks matte. Flip with a thin spatula and cook until golden on the other side. Repeat with the remaining batter.
Meanwhile, simmer the berries and sugar (no need to add liquid – the berries will provide their own) until the berries pop and it looks saucy. Add more sugar or a splash of lemon juice if it needs it.
Serve the pancakes warm, topped with berries. Serves 4.