Whole Wheat Lemon Pancakes with Chia Seeds and Blackberry Syrup

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Okay I know I’m on a Chia Seed kick (see here) but really you should be too. And if you’re not then leave them out. Problem solved.

You know when you’re growing up and your mom makes pancakes and your dad reads the paper and then you all sit with mugs of coffee/hot chocolate and eat breakfast on a lazy Saturday today? Doesn’t the above picture almost make you think of that? Instead it was me waking up in a panic to consume carbs and eating that stack solo after a night with the girls. No matter the setting these pancakes are rich and satisfying and decadent.

Inspired by The Kitchen Sink
1.5 cups whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
0.5 tsp kosher salt
3 tbsp sugar
3 tsp lemon zest
0.5 cup plain greek yogurt (I used Fage 0%- you could use a vanilla flavored greek yogurt… you also don’t have to use a fat free one like I did)
1 cup milk (I used 2%)
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 eggs
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp chia seeds (optional for haters)

Syrup:
4.25 cups of blackberries
1 cups sugar
0.5 cups water

I would make the syrup first. This makes a lot of syrup which I mixed into yogurt (okay fine I just ate it out of the jar) throughout the week but you could halve this if you’re only interested in having enough for the pancakes. In a sauce pan mix berries, sugar and water. Bring to boil and reduce to simmer for 30 minutes. THAT’S IT DON’T YOU FEEL BAD FOR HAVING NOT DONE THIS SOONER IN YOUR LIFE?

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Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. In a small bowl rub the sugar and lemon zest together. Whisk into the flour mixture.

In a separate bowl whisk the milk, eggs, vegetable oil, yogurt, lemon juice and vanilla extract. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir BARELY. Stir in chia seeds if using/if awesome.

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I made these in a cast iron skillet (all things are better when made in a cast iron skillet- see here). Heat your skillet over medium heat. Brush with melted butter (see more info on that here). Ladle the batter to the size you want. When there are bubbles all over the pancakes you can flip. If you suck at flipping like I do it’s okay they will still taste amazing.

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I kept mine warm on a baking sheet in a 200 degree oven while I made the rest. I also put my plate in there (you know you’re a food diva when you warm your own plate for pancakes you are eating solo).

This picture really does not give justic to how large of a stack this is

This picture really does not give justic to how large of a stack this is

Top with the blackberry syrup and sprinkle with powdered sugar if you want (and you do want to). Eat for a lifetime.

Green Tea Muffins with Mini Chocolate Chips

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Last weekend I bopped around the city and discovered The Spice House on Wells St.  I found this  Matcha Powder there and let’s be real I want to make any dish green if possible (more on this here). 

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Originally I planned to make green tea shortbread and then remembered I made shortbread last week and forced myself towards a green tea muffin.  Amazing call.  Couldn’t resist adding mini chocolate chips.  I support most mini things including my recently acquired mini cooper that I mainly bought because Ina Garten also drives one (more on that here).

These come together so fast and taste delicious.  I know the green color is weird and if you want to (slash if you are boring) you can leave the matcha out and just have regular chocolate chip muffins.

Line a muffin pan with liners.

Get two bowls.  In one bowl combine one egg, 1 cup milk (I used 2%) and 1/3 cup melted better.

In the other bowl combine 1 and 2/3 cups of flour, 0.5 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of baking powder, 0.5 cups of brown sugar (I used dark) and 1 tablespoon of matcha. 

So much green :)

So much green 🙂

Now add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients stirring until just combined.  Mix 0.75 cups of mini chocolate chips with two tablespoons of flour in a small bowl.  Stir into the batter briefly.

photo[1]  Divide the batter into the muffin pan and bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees F.

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Artichoke Spread

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There are a lot of great things about living in Chicago including but not limited to:
-Friday nights out with my girlfriends
-Saturday visits from my parents

You might see the conflict here. Normally I would want to have a bunch of treats/snacks on snacks when my parents come over… especially when they bring two of my awesome cousins like they did last Saturday. Instead of waking up and baking my face off I woke up and wanted to order a pizza. Needless to say I was struggling and needed to make something insanely easy for their arrival.

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This artichoke spread can be made no matter what state you are in or how much time you have. You might even have all the ingredients on hand (I didn’t but let’s be real I needed to pick up ginger ale anyway). Either way- this stuff is addictive.  In a lot of ways it is more like an Artichoke Tapenade and you know how I feel about Tapenade.

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Recipe from Mario Batali
Combine in a food processor 1 garlic clove (peeled- do I really have to specify that?), 1 cup of large green pitted olives, 1 tablespoons capers (rinsed and drained), 1 15 ounce can of artichoke hearts (drained) and 0.25 cups of extra virgin olive oil.

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Serve with carbs/veg/eat with a spoon.