America’s Test Kitchen does it again. Testing and experimenting until they find the perfect and most well-loved result. These gluten free lemon ricotta pancakes are the stuff of my brunch dreams. Light and impossibly airy, with the creamy flavor of ricotta and a lovely brightness from lemon zest and juice to balance the richness of the ricotta. They are delicious drizzled with honey in lieu of maple syrup, but I strongly encourage you to make the pear-blackberry topping. The pinch of cardamom gives the fruit a special boost in flavor and I can’t imagine eating these pancakes without this fruit topping. The pomegranate seeds add another layer of beauty and flavor. If you don’t need your lemon-ricotta pancakes to be gluten free, this recipe from Bobby Flay I made a few years ago is also very good (not as light & airy though!).
from: The How Can It Be Gluten Free Cookbook
makes: 12- 14 pancakes
3 1/2 ounces (3/4 cup) ATK Gluten Free Flour Blend
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
2 large eggs, separated, plus 2 large whites (4 whites and 2 yolks, separated)
1/3 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest plus 4 teaspoons juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
pinch of cream of tartar
1/4 cup sugar
vegetable oil or canola spray for griddle
3 ripe pears, peeled, cored, halved, and cut into small pieces
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch
pinch ground cardamom
1 cup blackberries, halved if large
pomegranate seeds- optional
for the compote
Combine pears, sugar, cornstarch, salt, and cardamom in bowl and microwave until pears are softened but not mushy and juices are slightly thickened, 4-6 minutes, stirring once halfway through microwaving. Stir in blackberries and set aside while you make the pancakes.
for the pancakes
Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 200 degrees F. Set a wire rack inside a rimmed baking sheet and place in oven. Whisk flour blend, baking soda, and salt together in medium bowl, and make well in center. Add ricotta, egg yolks, milk, lemon zest and juice, and vanilla and whisk until combined. Stir in melted butter.
Using stand mixer (or hand held mixer) fitted with whisk, whip egg whites and cream of tartar on medium-low speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Increase speed to medium-high and whip whites to soft, billowy mounds, about 1 minute. Grandually add sugar and whip until glossy, soft peaks form, 1-2 minutes. Transfer 1/3 of the whipped egg whites to batter and whisk gently until mixure is lightened. Using rubber spatula, gently fold remaining egg whites into batter.
Spray a 12 inch nonstick skillet with cooking spray and place over medium heat or use an electric griddle set to 350 degrees (also prepared with cooking spray). When skillet or griddle is hot, ladle pancake batter, leaving 2 inches between each portion. Using back of ladle, gently spread each portion into a round. Cook until edges are set and first side is deep golden brown. Flip pancakes and continue to cook until second side is golden brown. Serve immediately, or transfer to wire rack in preheated oven. Repeat with remaining batter.
Butter pancakes if desired (yes, you want to) and top with pear-blackberry compote and pomegranate seeds, if using.