Friday, October 14, 2011

A Taste of Home: Shopsin's Pumpkin Pancakes

For the most part, I'd say I'm really happy with our new neighborhood and the house we're renting. I've wanted to move west for as long as I can remember and we finally did it. During my rebellious teenager years I would talk about Oregon (pronounced:ore-uh-GONE) a lot. I was also obsessed with California, which might have been a symptom of being a New Yorker and living through the gray winters. But regardless, I wanted to move west. 
Well, here we are-- on the front range of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. I didn't make it all the way to the west coast, but we did move 2,000 miles in the right direction...
I knew that I'd miss certain things. And I do. But I was really ready for a change. I wanted a better quality of life, more relaxed atmosphere, and nature. Tons of nature.
That's what we really like about Denver. The people are friendly and the pace isn't rushed. We live in a big city-- with a symphony, a ballet (I'm thinking about going to Swan Lake. Who wants to come with?), a theater company and a some really cool museums-- but we are also just an hour away from the most spectacular mountain range and hiking galore. 
I'm trying local dishes that I wasn't familiar with before moving out here. Some examples include: green chili, American Indian Tacos and flatbreads, and huaraches. That said, I do miss some comfort foods from home and Shopsin's pumpkin pancakes is near the top of the list of things I am missing right now. (It's so very autumnal!)  
Lucky for me, their pumpkin pancake recipe was featured in Saveur Magazine a while back, so now I can make them anytime! And I won't have to deal with the long waits and the pushing at the Essex Market. All I've got to put up with is a little baby who occasionally likes to cry and a mischievous toddler who likes to destroy the house. That's not too bad, is it?
Alright, I've got my cakes on the griddle and then I'm off for a hike. 
Yes, this "west-mountain thing" suits me very well...
SHOPSIN'S PUMPKIN PANCAKES (Adapted ever so slightly from Saveur Magazine)
Serves 8

1 3⁄4 cups flour
3 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. ground ginger
1⁄2 tsp. kosher salt
1⁄4 tsp. ground allspice
1 cup canned pumpkin purée
3/4 cup heavy cream 
1⁄2 cup milk
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2-3 tablespoons of butter for greasing the skillet  {Note: The original recipe used 6 tablespoons of canola oil. I used butter instead - about 1/2 tablespoon of butter per batch of 3 pancakes.}
Butter and maple syrup, for serving
1. In a bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, cloves, ginger, salt, and allspice. Add pumpkin, cream, milk, and eggs; whisk until smooth. 
2. Heat 1/2 tbsp. butter in a 12" nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Using a measuring cup, use 1/4 cup of batter for each 3" pancakes (I made three at a time) and pour on the skillet. Cook until bubbles begin to form on the edges, 1–2 minutes. Flip and cook until done, 1–2 minutes more. Repeat with remaining butter and pancake batter. Serve pancakes hot with butter and syrup. 
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  1. MMMMMMM, and wouldn't you know it...we're moving to Colorado, too! Maybe we could meet up and I'll make you up a plate of these luscious cakes. Give me a couple of months to get the house sold. Cheers!

  2. Theresa, That's so funny. I think the word is out on the street-- Colorado is a great place to live. We love it here. Best of luck selling the house and definitely send an email when you get settled. All the best. Love your site too. I'll be "following" you. Take Care!

  3. Oh my goodness! I can't wait to try this!! I can almost taste it already ;)

  4. I will most definitely send the word out upon our arrival...think happy selling thoughts this fall/winter! :)

  5. I made these too. They were really good. I added a bit more all spice and used a big pat of butter for each batch in the skillet (about a tablespoon). Good quality maple syrup too. It's such a good way to start the day. Nice photos! -Jasmine.