Sunday, July 13, 2008

Back on the Brunch Shift, Or, A Pancake With Promise.

Back when I was a full-time professional kitchen monkey, I worked many a brunch shift. Unless one is being hired in at the top of the kitchen hierarchy, it's common for an employer to try a new employee out by giving them brunch duty. It's a good way to size the new hire up, check out their speed & precision, & determine their dependability. After all, if the new guy can consistently make it into work early Sunday morning, ready to go, after being out all Saturday night partying...

Somehow, I was able to do this alarmingly well (probably because I just kept partying, with maybe a brief nap, right up until it was time to get to work), & I often found myself in danger of being stuck making gussied-up home-fries & omelets indefinitely.

That lifestyle is now well behind me, but I still find myself cooking & eating breakfast at all times of the day. As I've mentioned in a previous post, brunch-type dishes are great ways to use up leftovers from other local-eating endeavors. Part of this stems from the brunch concept itself; the ability to use ingredients in a breakfast dish that usually would be used for meals later in the day, but another reason is that it allows the cook a more leisurely pace to work at & prepare more time-consuming components.

Take this, for example:

Local chorizo & potato omelet, with Widmer one-year cheddar, Miereke's gouda, & two-tone salsa.

I don't know about you, but I would never be able to make time for this sort of meal, while simultaneously trying to get out the door to work. It's straight-up day off fare, my friends.

Something considerably quicker is local buckwheat pancakes, provided that the batter is made the night before (which is, in fact, recommended by the pancake experts). The beauty of these pancakes is that they can serve in their normal capacity as a solid, energy-packed breakfast food, but by thinning the batter they can be made as crepes. This allows them to accommodate any number of garnishes & additions & be served 24 hours a day.

Local buckwheat-mulberry pancakes, with maple syrup.

I unfortunately used up all my batter gorging myself on regular pancakes, so I'll have to wait for my next batch to play around with crepe combinations. I kind of forgot to get buttermilk, too, so these pancakes were a little less fluffy than they could have been, but I was already expecting a heartier version based on memories of childhood buckwheat 'cakes. Another neat thing about this general recipe is that it can be adjusted to be gluten-free, for those with an adverse reaction.

Okay, it's early in the afternoon on a Sunday, & I'm starving. Time to get to work...

-nano out.

A tip o' the nano-hat to Nora & her next-door neighbor (who, knowingly or unknowingly, provided the delicious mulberries).

1 comment:

Liz said...

Mulberries are the best! I need to give you my mulberry bar and mulberry muffin recipes. Or just bring you a mulberry bar.