Butternut Pancakes


Root Cellars Rock just put up new Recipes pages as another way to connect NL people to their local food.  My name is Sarah and I'm the RCR project coordinator. I had the very enjoyable, but depending on how hungry I was, sometimes dangerous task of collecting recipe resources for the new pages. I really like looking at all the amazing photos that food bloggers take. I've said before that gardeners love talking about what they grow, and it seems like food bloggers LOVE taking pictures of the food they make. Root Cellars Rock is going to keep collecting some of the best of the best in local food recipes to share with you, our recipes page will continue to grow, but beware their deliciously tempting photos if you've got a hungry belly and aren't in a kitchen. Over the coming months we're going to test out some of those local food recipes and adapt them to suit what we've got growing in Newfoundland and Labrador, and while doing that we'll tell you a little bit about the producers that provide our local ingredients and give you some tips for cooking along the way. From field to table, we're going to make some delicious dishes and tell you about them in upcoming blog posts on Root Cellars Rock. And I'm saying 'we' because I hope that you will help me out. I'm located in St. John's and can access local food around here, but what about all the other farms and recipes across the province? We want to hear about them too! Email me at info@rootcellarsrock.ca and we'll showcase your recipes and local food too. Pick a recipe off our page or share your favourite from home and try your hand at being an NL local food blogger.

Butternut Pancakes

As a first attempt at showcasing these recipes, I have to say I was struck with some fantastic beginner's luck. This recipe was extremely delicious. I doubled it so we could eat these pancakes for a few days, but they barely made it to day two.

The original recipe comes from Dishing the Divine and is for Pumpkin Pancakes. I decided to make it instead with butternut squash, but not just any butternut squash, I had two locally grown, organic butternut squash from Seed to Spoon CSA in Portugal Cove- St. Phillips. In October the Food Security Network ran our annual World Food Day Movie & Meal event in St. John's, that raised money for community projects around the province, and happened in unison with other World Food Day events across NL and worldwide. We asked local farmers if they could contribute produce donations and the response was overwhelming! We got so much fresh, local produce that we were giving what we couldn't cook that day out to guests to take home. It's not often that you attend an event and get sent home with free organic squash, but that's just what happened!

Seed to Spoon gave us dozens of what Farmer Nadya called 'soup squash'. They were small, hard squash that hadn't had a chance to ripen fully before frost hit and they had to be picked early. So that meant that they were destined for a soup pot or another longer cooking method that would soften them up enough to be useful to eat. I've had the butternut, along with some other Seed to Spoon squash, since October now. I store them in a metal basket in my kitchen, which is generally dark and cool, and they're just as good as when I first got them. I roasted the butternut to soften them up a bit, but then also put them through the blender along with some almond milk, so their hardness was not a problem. Because of the colour of the squash, it actually looked a lot like a mango smoothie when it was blended, which made me think this recipe could be an April Fools joke in the making. Here, try this sweet mango smoothie...hahaha...okay, sorry about that, have some yummy pancakes instead!

To make Butternut Pancakes gather these ingredients:

1 1/2 cups milk (Any dairy or non-dairy milk will work well, I used almond milk) 1 cup cooked butternut squash, skin and seeds removed (To find out how to cook the squash, check out this E-How Food article. I roasted mine, but boiling or steaming would have worked too.) 1 egg 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 2 tablespoons vinegar

2 cups all-purpose flour (Instead I used 1 cup 12-grain flour and 1 cup whole wheat, both from Speerville Flour Mill in New Brunswick) 3 tablespoons brown sugar 2 teaspoons baking powder 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon ground allspice (With the spices we doubled all of these quantities and also added a lot of nutmeg. My crew likes a lot of that pumpkin-pie spice flavour but you may prefer it milder like in the original recipe) 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger 1/2 teaspoon salt chocolate chips, as much as you prefer (or maybe try dried fruit, nuts, or carob chips)

Just as a side-note, I was making these pancakes with the delightful help of a 2.5 year old child and the recipe has a lot of dry goods to measure out and things to stir together, so that makes it a fun one if you're cooking with little helpers.

1. In a blender, puree the squash and milk together.

2. In another bowl beat together the egg, oil, and vinegar.

3. Combine all the wet ingredients.

4. In another larger bowl, mix together all the dry ingredients.

5. Combine the wet and the dry ingredients, stirring out any lumps but not over-stirring, just enough to mix well.

6. Add in the chocolate chips.

7. Heat a frying pan to medium heat and use a bit of cooking spray or butter to moisten the pan. Spoon the batter on to the size of pancakes that you prefer.

8. Cook on one side of the pancakes until they brown slightly and solidify enough to flip, and then flip them and brown on the other side. And you're done!

Serve these topped with some maple syrup, yogurt, cream cheese, or a sprinkling of cinnamon.