A Taste of Kentucky Cookbook: Behind the Scenes

A Taste of Kentucky Cookbook: Behind the Scenes

Last week, I began the testing phase of recipes for my next cookbook A Taste of Kentucky: Favorite Recipes from The Bluegrass State (Farcountry Press 2016). For this project I have the good fortune of collaborating with a talented Kentucky photographer named Sarah Jane. Our Tuesday session was great fun. I cooked, while she chased the light around my house and photographed the finished dishes.

The photographed pancakes are Buttermilk Pancakes with Whipped Bourbon Vanilla Butter from The Red River Rockhouse in Campton, KY. This is one example of a recipe we worked on last week. While shooting this particular photo, Sarah Jane instructed me to pour a thin stream of syrup onto the pancakes. While I poured, she took pictures of the syrup stream flowing onto the pancakes. It was a beautiful shot. Just for fun, she also shot this picture of the resulting puddle of syrup around the pancakes. I call this Buttermilk Pancakes en Dolce Brodo (in sweet broth).

A Taste of Kentucky should be a beautiful and delicious cookbook with close to 100 recipes from the best chefs, restaurants, inns, food producers, and writers across Kentucky. While you wait for this book, I share a pancake recipe from The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook. Try to control yourself with the syrup.

Mile-High Buttermilk Pancakes
Makes about eighteen 4-inch pancakes

Not made from a mix, these pancakes are a soft, fluffy, rather tall pancake. Vary the size if desired. For a 6-inch pancake use 1/2 cup of batter, for a 5-inch pancake use 1/3 cup batter, and for a 4-inch pancake use 1/4 cup batter, and for silver dollar pancakes, or pancakes the tiny size of a silver dollar coin, use a tablespoon to portion out the batter.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted 

In a large bowl stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In another bowl, mix together the eggs, buttermilk, and melted butter. Make a hole in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the buttermilk mixture. Mix the dry ingredients together until the ingredients are blended, but not smooth. Let stand for 5 minutes. Heat griddle over medium-high heat until water flicked on the surface beads up and dances around. Use a 1/4-cup measure to scoop the batter onto the griddle. Cook about 3 minutes or until bubbles form on the surface of the batter, the edges look dry, and the bottom of the pancake is lightly browned. Turn the pancake and continue to cook until the other side of the pancake is browned, about 2 more minutes. Serve immediately or keep warm in the oven with warm maple syrup.

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