One of my favorite things to do in Dallas is brunch. Dallasites LOVE to get their brunch on – in fact, every year D Magazine publishes a “Best Breakfasts/Brunch in Dallas” issue that just makes my mouth water. I then set out to make a weekend schedule over a span of a couple months to make sure I hit all the new brunchalicious hot spots! One of mine and Ryan’s favorites is Legal Grounds – a quaint little coffee shop in the Lakewood area that happens to be THE place to eat breakfast for White Rock Lakers after a long morning run or bike ride.
My go-to brunch order from Legal Grounds always starts with a Prom Cake – an satisfyingly hearty banana oat pancake piled high with subtly sweet house-made granola. Top it off with a little pure maple syrup and you are on your way to a power-charged Saturday and ready to conquer the world! The Prom Cake is a brunch dish that I think of often…..well actually a lot….and I’ve been trying to nail at home for a while now.
It all starts off with that delicious granola, which you can do just about anything with. Make a big batch and use it in your own “Prom Cakes,” top muffins with it, sprinkle on yogurt, add a crunchy texture to a peanut butter sandwich, or just eat a handful for a quick snack! It’s so yummy, and keeps well in your fridge for up to 4 weeks.
Next is the pancake. For this lovely pancake to have a moist texture yet taste like fresh bananas, your bananas need to be just at the point to where they are little too brown to eat but not brown enough for banana bread-making. So go with brown-speckled bananas that are just softening but not mushy. For the flour, I like to use white whole-wheat flour, which is a whole-grain flour (contains all parts of the wheat kernel) made from white wheat kernels. I really like the flavor of the bananas to shine through in this dish, and the white wheat flour makes this possible because of its more neutral flavor (as opposed to red wheat kernel flour). For extra nutty flavor and nutrition, I threw in a little ground flaxseed. The end result of the recipe you are about to see was just about perfect, soooo close if not exactly the taste/texture I remembered from Legal Grounds. So go ahead and give them a try! They are kid-friendly, freeze well, and are packed with the protein, fiber, and B-vitamins you need to super-charge your day : )
Homemade Granola (used in this post to top Banana Crunch Pancakes)
Yield: about 20 1/4 cup servings
- 3 cups Old-Fashioned Granola
- 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
- 1/4 cup walnut or coconut oil
- 1/2 cup honey
- 2 TBSP pure maple syrup
- 1 1/2 TBSP cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp coarse-ground Kosher salt
- 3/4 cup chopped nuts of choice (My fav combo is walnuts and pistachios)
- Optional: 3/4 cup of either dried fruit of choice or dark chocolate chunks
- Preheat oven to 325. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicon baking mat.
- Mix the oil, honey, syrup, cinnamon, and salt in a small bowl until smooth.
- Mix the oats, coconut, and nuts in a larger bowl, then add the wet mixture to the dry and stir until well-incorporated.
- Spread the granola mixture evenly on the pan and bake until golden-brown and crisp, about 25-30 minutes, stirring about every 10 minutes.
- Once granola has cooled, break into clumps and stir in dried fruit or dark chocolate as you choose.
- Store in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 weeks.
Banana Crunch Pancakes
Yield: about 14 3” pancakes
- 1 cup of White Whole Wheat Flour
- 2 TBSP ground flaxseed
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp fine ground Kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 medium-sized brown-speckled banana
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups low-fat buttermilk
- 1 heaping teaspoon vanilla
- 1/2 cup homemade granola
- Topping suggestions: maple syrup, honey, extra granola, Greek yogurt
- In a medium-sized bowl, stir together flour, flaxseed, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon until well incorporated.
- In a larger bowl, mash banana with a fork. Use your fork to mix together the banana, eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla.
- While stirring, add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir until just combined (overmixing will make your cakes dense and tough).
- Lightly fold in the granola to the batter with a rubber spatula.
- Using a 1/4 measuring cup, ladle pancake batter onto a griddle or skillet set on medium heat. Cook for about 2-3 minutes on each side until set and light golden-brown.
- Top pancakes with 1 T of either honey or maple syrup and 2 T granola. Goes great with a dollop of plain Greek yogurt and fresh-sliced bananas as well.