Whole Wheat Pancakes with Maple Blackberry Bourbon Compote


One of my very first kitchen memories is of making pancakes. As kids we were in charge of making our own breakfast and, while that usually meant cereal one day we decided we were grown up enough to make pancakes.

We carefully measured out each thing and and mixed it slowly and left a few bubbles in it so that it wasn’t over mixed. We poured it in little spoonfuls into the pan of bubbling butter and cooked them delicately.

We sat around the table and poured way more maple syrup than my mom would normally allow us too, and dug in. And they were terrible horrible rubbery rubbish. I know now that we forgot to add in the baking soda but at the time I just new they were wretched. They were fed to the dog so our parents wouldn’t see and we tried again.

We painstakingly measured every ingredient and fried them in butter again but this time, they cooked so quickly we almost poured the batter in, flipped them and then they were done, which was great because we were very hungry by this point.

So again, we poured much to much maple syrup on them and again excitedly tried our first bite. They, again, were god-awful-couldn’t-eat-them-terrible. The butter had burnt in the pan making them look cooked but they ran into puddles when we cut them open they were so raw inside. Again, we fed them to our dog (who miraculously had an iron clad stomach) and began to try again.

Fortunately my Dad woke up at this point and decided that enough was enough, and with surprising enthusiasm for a man who was not lying in bed reading the Sunday New York Times with a latte in his hand as was his tradition, taught us how to make pancakes.

First he showed us an old box of Aunt Jemima mix from the back of the cupboard, then he showed us to fry them in canola oil which had a higher burning temperature.

And then let us flip and fry and we brought them to him in bed with the paper.

I have moved up in the world since this disastrous first attempt, and have made many pancakes since. I gave up on mix years ago and became a devoted Joy of Baking pancake user, until I found this recipe that I posted a few months back.

But the other day when I had girlfriends over for brunch I needed a slightly moe flavourful pancake. I needed the sort of pancake that would stand up not only to maple but also to blackberries. That wouldn’t fade into the background of a syrup that had vanilla beans, and orange zest, and also the tiniest bit of bourbon. I needed a pancake with a flavour of it’s own.

These are just that, but not, as is common with whole wheat flour, stoggy, or dense, or heavy. They are wonderful light fluffy pancakes with just enough nuttiness to hold up against a wonderful summertime sauce.

Whole Wheat Pancakes with Maple Blackberry Compote.

Note: This recipe uses whole wheat pastry flour, which is basically really fine sifted whole wheat flour. If you can’t find such a thing, use half whole wheat and half white and sift it to get the bits out.

Maple Blackberry Compote

3/4 cup Maple Syrup

Zest of half an Orange cut into thin strips

Half a Vanilla Bean,

1 tsp Bourbon

1 cup Blackberries

Whole Wheat Pancakes

2 cups Whole Wheat Pastry Flour (see note)

1 tsp Baking Powder

1/2 tsp Baking Soda

1/3 cup Sugar

2 1/4 cup Buttermilk

2 Eggs

2 tbsp Butter, melted plus more for frying

A little bit of canola oil for frying

In a small pot warm the maple syrup with the orange zest and the vanilla

Let it sit on medium low heat for 10 minutes, then add in the blackberries and turn off the heat but leave it on the element.


Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl

Whisk together the eggs and the milk and pour them into the bowl, with the butter and mix until just combined, a few lumps are alright.

Fry them carefully in butter with a little bit of oil as well. When they start to get bubbles in the middle flip them over, and then keep them warm in the oven as you cook the rest. (sorry i forgot to take a picture of them!)

When they are cooked slather then with butter and syrup and berries!