I never imagined I would spend hours trying to invent and perfect a protein pancake recipe for a competition, but alas, that is exactly what I found myself doing this week. After a couple of trials and taste tests, a few missing (ie: eaten by housemates) ingredients, and some minor cooking mishaps over a temperamental wood cook stove, I finally ended up with a tasty and simple recipe that combines unusual ingredients into delicious pancakes. So without further ado, I present to you: Sweet Potato & Chocolate Protein Pancakes!
The base for this batter is simple: sweet potato, whey protein powder, and egg provide substance, a bit of banana or maple syrup is added for sweetness, milk for moisture if needed, and cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla for flavor. Then, to put this over the top, chocolate!
I always like to use unsweetened and unflavored natural protein powders in my cooking. For one, I am cautious of any and all artificial sweeteners. I don’t eat them in food I buy, and I’m not going to put them into food I make, so any powder containing aspartame, Sucralose, Splenda, or any other unnatural chemical sweetener is out for me. Also, I like the versatility that an unflavored powder gives me. Since I mostly use protein powders mixed in with other ingredients, and not just blended with water to make a quick shake, I don’t mind that the powder has no flavor of its own and actually prefer it, because it lets the flavors of my other ingredients shine through. My preferred protein powder is unflavored About Time 100% All Natural Whey Protein Isolate because it is a quality product that contains nothing but pure whey protein isolate sourced from grass fed, hormone and antibiotic free cows.
This is important to note in this recipe because it needs some added sweetness. Maple syrup is usually my sweetener of choice, because we sugar our own and I have it in abundance. In other parts of the world, 100% pure maple syrup may be harder to come by though, so you can substitute honey or agave, or just use a sweetener of your choice. In the ingredients I have listed, I used a ripe banana (the riper the better) to add sweetness to the recipe without needing to add syrup or a secondary sweetener, and it also adds a little extra moisture to the batter. If you end up using a sweetened protein powder instead of an unflavored one, you may not need to add as much sweetener as the recipe calls for.
Chocolate is a key ingredient in this recipe as well. I love dark chocolate, so for my first batch of this recipe, I used Nestle Dark Chocolate Morsels, which are about 53% dark chocolate and very sweet. For the second trial, I used 100% cacao Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate Squares. If you like dark chocolate and don’t need a very sweet pancake, I think 70% cacao dark chocolate provides the perfect blend of bitterness and sweetness for this recipe.
The pancakes are garnished with ground cinnamon and a drizzle of chocolate sauce before serving. This is important, because it is what puts the flavor over the top!
Here’s what you’ll need to make my Sweet Potato & Chocolate Protein Pancakes:
½ cup mashed sweet potato
2 large eggs
1 scoop whey protein powder*
1 medium ripe banana (the riper, the better)
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
½ teaspoon vanilla extract (the real stuff, no imitation flavoring)
1 teaspoon baking soda
3 tablespoons dark chocolate morsels (or 3 dark chocolate squares chopped into small pieces), about 40g of chocolate
Ingredients for Garnish:
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1. Making them is easy. Mash the sweet potato and banana by hand, then add all of the other batter ingredients except for the chocolate into the batter.
2. Don’t put this in a blender, or it may become too liquidy and not hold together as well. Stir until evenly mixed, and then add in the chocolate.
3. Pour or scoop batter onto a heated skillet over medium heat. If you are using a pan that does not have a nonstick surface, use a little butter or oil (coconut oil is probably healthiest) to prevent the pancakes from sticking. When the top starts to turn dull instead of shiny and little bubbles appear, flip them over.
4. When the pancakes are done, arrange them on a plate and add a little drizzle of chocolate sauce and then a sprinkle of cinnamon on top. This adds to both the presentation and the flavor.
5. You can purchase chocolate syrup from the store or make your own by melting 1 Tablespoon or 1 square of dark chocolate in a double boiler and adding up to 1 teaspoon of coconut oil as needed. If you don’t have a double boiler, you can improvise.
6. Put the chocolate into a small metal cup or pan, and then place this inside a larger pot that has a little water in it (enough so that the container with the chocolate is floating and not sitting on the bottom of the first pan). Then heat this over the stove until the chocolate melts. You can also just use a microwave to melt the chocolate if you want.
This recipe makes about six, five inch pancakes.
Macros per Serving (out of 1):
Not including chocolate/garnish
With 40g dark chocolate
*I use unflavored About Time 100% All Natural Whey Protein Isolate
**You can either buy chocolate syrup or sauce from the store or make your own by melting 1 Tbsp dark chocolate morsels or 1 square melted in a double boiler with ½ tsp coconut oil, use about 14g chocolate.
By Kari from http://dyeeat.wordpress.com