There is something about fall that makes me nostalgic and eager for flavorful comfort. Maybe it’s the days getting shorter and me reflecting more on the past, as I meet new students and fondly reminisce of former ones. Maybe it’s the copper hues gently making their appearance known on the faces of leaves, their tenderness ever so present in the golden light. Maybe it’s something else, just a bundle of cravings? In any case, I indulge in the past vicariously, while thinking of new dishes to make. From this reminiscing, a recent new (yet old 🙂 ) family brunch option was born: lemon ricotta pancakes.
Today, I’m writing about brunch, a topic which came to mind upon me fondly remembering the media brunch I attended at Maggiano’s in downtown Chicago some years ago (you can read my detailed account of the experience here) For me, the highlight of the event was the culinary demo showcasing the making of lemon ricotta pancakes. I have kept the recipe printout, and I have made these scrumptious pancakes numerous times ever since.
With a fluffy texture and a superb lemony flavor and aroma, these beautiful pancakes satisfy the sweet-toothed brunch lover with their enticing goodness. I like to used vanilla extract instead of vanilla bean paste and avocado oil instead of canola oil, and to serve the pancakes with freshly whipped cream, fruits, honey, and bee pollen.
I enjoyed these pancakes for brunch recently, served with a vibrant and refreshing strawberry-based mocktail, as the sun was gently making its appearance known through the open windows.
What is your favorite brunch dish? Anyone else a fan of lemon ricotta pancakes? Let me know in the comments 🙂
Maggiano's lemon ricotta pancakes
Servings: 4 people
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 4 tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 eggs, separated
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp neutral oil, such as avocado oil
- Whipped cream, fresh blueberries, maple syrup (optional)
- In a small mixing bowl, combine the flour and baking powder.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, egg yolks, kosher salt, whole milk, ricotta cheese, vanilla bean paste or extract, lemon zest, and lemon juice.
- Set both bowls aside and in a separate medium mixing bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks are formed.
- Whisk the flour mixture into the ricotta cheese mixture until incorporated.
- Gently fold the whisked egg whites into the flour and cheese mixture until incorporated - do not over fold.
- Place the oil on a 400F griddle.
- Scoop the batter onto the griddle.
- When the batter begins to bubble and the bottom has turned a golden-brown color, flip the pancake over.
- Continue to cook until golden-brown.
- Serve the pancakes with whipped cream, blueberries, and maple syrup, as per your preferences.