Whose ready for major yumminess today??? I mean, seriously, one look at these gingerbread pear pancakes and my heart literally starts to beat a little faster. Jingle bells start to ring. I have a sudden urge to play Christmas music, wrap presents, and invite everyone I know to come over for a cookie exchange.
These pancakes are the epitome of holiday cheer. They are warm, spicy, light, fluffy, and topped with caramelized fruit. They are begging to be served at Christmas brunch with a side of cranberry sauce, swirls of maple syrup and maybe even a big dollup of Greek yogurt. Or perhaps they could make an appearance on the the menu of a Santa breakfast and be sprinkled with a dusting of powdered sugar "snow."
To be honest, I'd never made gingerbread pancakes before this year. My inspiration to make them came when Ryan and I built our first gingerbread house. I knew I REALLY had to make them and fill the centers with caramelized pears when my mouth dropped open wide at the sight of the gorgeous apple filled pancakes from Pinch of Yum. We really should all make more pancakes with caramelized fruit cooked into the center.
This is one of those recipes I wish I had been making for years now, because they really are just delightfully festive and oh so yummy. I'm thinking they will be the star of many Christmas morning breakfasts to come and I can't wait to make again them for family and friends.
On a side note, I found it was easiest to get a perfectly round 6'' pancakes by cooking one pancake at a time in a 6'' skillet. I kept the pancakes warm as they were cooked on a baking sheet in a 250 degree oven. Leftovers were excellent the next day and the next after being heated in the oven at 350 for about 8 minutes - enjoy!
Gingerbread Pear Pancakes
- ½ cup whole wheat flour
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- Pinch of nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon instant espresso powder
- ¼ cup packed dark brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons unsulfered molasses
- 2 tablespoons butter melted and cooled to room temperature, plus more for skillet
- ¾ cup water
- 2 medium size ripe Anjou pears sliced ¼-1/8'' thick, you need 12 slices total
- 1 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- Maple syrup for serving
- In a large bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, spices, and espresso powder. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, eggs, molasses, butter, and water until smooth.
- Gradually the flour mixture into the wet ingredients until just combined. Batter may be slightly lumpy; avoid overmixing.
- Use a paring knife to cut a small teardrop shape out of the center of each pear slice. Combine the flour, sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a small bowl. Dip each side of the pear slices in this mixture and shake to remove any excess mixture. Lay the pear slices flat on a plate within reach of your stovetop.
- Heat oven to 250 and place a baking sheet on the center rack.
- Heat a nonstick skillet or griddle over medium heat. Place 1-2 teaspoons of butter in the skillet/griddle with each batch of pancakes that you cook. Place 2 pear slices per pancake in the skillet, with the slices slightly overlapping each other. Let them cook for about 60 seconds before covering them completely with a heaping ¼ cup of the pancake batter. Cook for 4-5 minutes until the edges of the pancake look dry and bubbles have formed on the surface of the batter. Carefully flip the pancake and cook 1 minute more. Transfer pancake to baking sheet in the oven to keep warm until you are ready to serve.
- Continue this process with the remainder of the batter and pear slices - you should be able to get a total of six 6'' pancakes with 2 slices of pear in each cake.