Saturday, March 27, 2010

Matzo Meal Pancakes

I don't know why I don't make these all year around because they are really a lovely thing to eat for breakfast or even better a leisurely weekend brunch. Perhaps it's the extra effort of beating the egg whites because if you just mix in the eggs whole, the end result while pleasant is just indefinably wrong.

3 eggs, separated
3/4 cup cold water
1/2 cup matzo meal
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
honey (runny style in the UK) or maple syrup if you absolutely must (sigh)

oil or unsalted butter for frying (do NOT use olive oil!)

In a medium size mixing bowl, lightly beat the egg yolks. (Use a whisk for this process.)
Whisk in the water.
Stir in the matzo meal, sugar and  1/2 teaspoon of the salt.
Let stand for 25 minutes to absorb all the liquid.(in the refrigerator if possible)
 (Wait till the liquid is absorbed before starting the next step.)
Use an electric mixer to beat the egg whites until stiff. Make sure the bowl you use is metal or glass (not plastic!) You want to beat the egg whites to the stiff peak stage.

Now gently fold the egg whites into the matzo meal mixture until just blended. Make sure you fold, do not stir!
*How to fold - a useful technique to know
Use a large spatula for this procedure. Scoop up a good dollop of whipped egg whites on your spatula and gently mix it into the matzo meal batter. This will "temper" the batter and lighten it.

Hold the egg white bowl over the mixing bowl containing your batter, and tilt it so that the egg whites slide out onto the batter. Using the large spatula, cut a path down the middle of the mixture with the edge of the spatula. Then gently turn half the mixture over onto the other half. Continue cutting down the middle and turning a portion over. Don't stir. The point of folding is to retain the air you have beaten into the whites. Be careful to only work the batter enough to incorporate the whites. It's ok if the mix looks a little streaky.
Cover the surface of your griddle or large flat frying pan with some oil and heat over medium hot.
When the oil starts to sizzle, drop the batter, 1 tablespoon at a time, onto the griddle/pan. Don't crowd the pancakes, make several batches.
Fry the pancakes until they reach the level of golden brown you like, (about 2 minutes or so per side.) Flip them over and and cook the other side.

Remove the pancakes from the pan and let drain on a paper towel while you fry the next batch.

To serve - I recommend drizzling them very lightly with honey (or maple syrup if you insist but honey is better and traditional for Passover.)

If you have leftover pancakes, they're a pretty nice nosh snitched directly from the fridge.


This Monday night is the first Seder of Passover.

You have been warned!