Thursday, February 26, 2009

Whole Grain Rant

Welcome to Pet Peeve Day at Cookie Baker Lynn, the day when your host goes on a rant and you get to sit back and wonder when the medication will take effect.

Today's topic - recipes that call for boxed mixes as ingredients. Now I have no big beef with that kind of recipe. One of my husband's favorite cakes calls for a boxed cake mix and a box of pudding mix. (One of these days I'll figure out how to make it with real food, but that's a task for another day.) I just don't think of it as real cooking to use a mix. That's just stirring.

What really cheeses me off is when I pay actual money for an actual cookbook and it has recipes that use boxed mixes. I buy cookbooks to cook, not to mix! Imagine my frustration when an issue of Bon Appetite arrived a while ago with a tempting picture of whole grain pancakes on the cover and when I eagerly flipped to the recipe it called for...whole grain pancake mix! What?? What kind of a recipe is that?

Thank heavens for Bob's Red Mill Baking Book, a cookbook with real recipes that uses food for ingredients. I used the recipe for buckwheat pancakes from that book and the Bon Appetite recipe for the sauce. It made a satisfying and hearty breakfast. I feel calmer already. Pass me another pancake. I think the carbs are working.

Buckwheat Pancakes with Maple Blueberry Sauce

- adapted from Bob's Red Mill Baking Book and Bon Appetit

1 cup maple syrup
1 cup frozen wild blueberries

2 cups buckwheat flour
3 Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup water
1 cup milk
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

1- Boil syrup and blueberries in heavy medium saucepan until reduced to generous 1 cup, about 13 minutes. Cool to lukewarm.

2- Oil and preheat a griddle.

3- Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a small bowl, whisk together the water and milk, then slowly whisk in the butter. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir till just combined. Add a little more water, if necessary. The batter may thicken as it sits; add a little more water, if necessary.

4- Ladle about 1/4 to 1/3 cup batter onto the hot griddle and cook over medium heat until bubbles appear, about 2 to 3 minutes. Turn and cook until golden brown on the other side.

5- Serve pancakes with butter and reserved syrup.


Marysol said...

Bob's Red Mill has a cookbook out? What year are we in? :-/

You know, those pancakes look just too good to be healthy, but I'd love to test the hypothesis.

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Well now Lynn didn't you look in that book before you handed over your money . . . nasty question, I'm sorry.
I certainly agree I don't buy cook books to stir a mix.
Bob's Red Mill is wonderful . . . the book and the flours.
Your pancakes are a grand stack!

Erin said...

I totally feel the same way! I got annoyed in December at the cake on the cover of Southern Living magazine. It was this beautiful looking coconut cake, and when I looked at the recipe, I saw that it called for a boxed cake mix. I was so disappointed. I hate seeing so many recipes that call for boxed mixes. Anyway, your pancakes look great!

Aimée said...

Lynn, my son would like a copy of this photo framed and hung over his bed. I've never met anyone who loves pancakes like he does, and I've never seen a lovelier photo of them.

I'm surprised at BA magazine.

Bellini Valli said...

Blueberries are my favourite sauce by far:D

pattio said...

I think it's a little scary that for National Pancake Day (Tuesday) our family made whole grain pancakes from scratch and added blueberries.

Mama JJ said...

Amen, Sister! Preach it!

Anonymous said...

hahaha you're funny! i adore any type of pancake as long as it has some blueberry sauce!

Anonymous said...

hahaha you're funny! i adore any type of pancake as long as it has some blueberry sauce!

Elyse said...

Yum! Those pancakes look so delicious. Probably all the more delicious because they don't come from a mix :) I totally agree: why should I pay money for someone to tell me to use a boxed mix in a recipe? It's ridiculous. Either way, though, nothing can change the fact that these pancakes look divine!

Claire said...

These look great! And those blueberries...divine! I agree with you on mixes for pancakes and quite often cakes. However, there are a few recipes that do use a cake mix (and that is usually the only mix I use) that involve MANY other ingredients...for those few recipes, I think that it's cooking. I would expect more from Bon Appetite anyway!!!

Melinda said...

I agree with your rant. It is even more frustrating to live abroad and not have the coconut Jello pudding to add to the Duncan Hines Yellow cake mix or what ever American brand is in the recipe. I thought thought those were recipes of the 60 & 70's.
Shame on Bon Appetite. Very sloppy.

Maria said...

Thanks for posting a REAL recipe! I hate it when recipes call for mixes...I want the real deal!! Your pancakes look yummy!!

Becca said...

Bon Appetite had a recipe with pancake mix as an ingredient? Do people really need pancake recipes that have 'pancake mix' as part of it? Why can't they just read the back of the pancake mix box.

Anyway, I prefer recipes that are from scratch. I even get tripped up by self rising flour.

Marjoke said...

Lynn, your pancakes must be delicious with the nice taste of buckweat.
You're quite right about the mix boxes; they taste like hardboard.

Natashya said...

I totally agree with you.
I ordered the Nordic Ware cookbooks from the States because I love my pan collection... and half their recipes started with box mixes! I felt so cheated.
So glad to hear a good review of the Bob's Red Mill book, I have had it on my wishlist for a while but haven't ordered it as I have never read of anyone cooking from it on their blog.
Pancakes look great! I love homemade pancakes with real maple syrup. The darker the better.

thecoffeesnob said...

These look incredible!

I share the same pet peeve as well. An issue Bon Appetit put out a while ago that had gorgeous scoops of ice cream gracing their front cover called for tubs of store-brought ice cream. I mean, seriously? That's assemblying, not cooking.

VeggieGirl said...

You said it best, Lynn!!

Mmm, pancakes.

The Blonde Duck said...

I don't think I've ever seen a cookbook that does that. I'd be mad too!

Now I want pancakes.

natalia said...

Ciao ! I totally agree.. here we don't even find those mix so I wouldn't know what to use !!

Elle said...

Mmmm buckwheat pancakes. Whole grains, real whole grains are so great to cook with. Bread baking has expanded my knowledge of them. I like the brand yiu used.

Belinda said...

lol, Lynn! I know what you mean about a recipe's photo looking so enticing, and then having it basically be comprised of a boxed mix and little else. But, I've been such a LAZY cook recently, that the ease of a boxed mix here and there is quite tempting! :-) Oh, what I wouldn't give for a plate of your heavenly looking pancakes right now...and that blueberry maple sauce?! I think I could make a meal of just that on its own! :-)

LyB said...

I feel exactly the same way! What gets me even more is when I watch a cooking show and the host uses boxed mixes, tubs of prepared "whipped" toppings, etc. Ugh. Anyways, your pancakes look so hearty and delicious, a perfect breakfast indeed. :)

RecipeGirl said...

I JUST got this cookbook in the mail the other day. Will have to give it more of a peek than I already have. These look wonderful!!

eatme_delicious said...

I am totally with you being annoyed with recipes that use boxed mixes. Well I'm not against them entirely but as you said, if I buy a cookbook I would be annoyed to find them calling for a box mix. Anyway, your pancakes look yummy! I'll have to check out Bob's Red Mill Baking Book.

Dee Light said...

Great post. I prefer made from scatch recipes too. That being said my sister-in-law gave me a Cup Cake Dr cookbook a few years ago (all of the recipes start with a mix), and my Hubby's favorite cupcake comes from that book. I guess men are just wierd that way.
And they are easy to make in a rush.