Be they Swedish or German, cornmeal or buttermilk, fluffy or crepe-esque, pancakes are a meal that everyone can agree on world wide. Some people like them for their taste, others for their texture, and some just enjoy them as a host food that makes it acceptable for you to drown a meal in syrup. What ever your reasons for liking pancakes, I'm sure that we can all agree that they are a fun way to make a mess while cooking.
Step 1: Instraments and Ingiediants of the Pancake
For this project you will need a couple of things to make this project fun, easy, and beautiful. Here's a list of things you will be needing.
Pancake batter- use a mix or make it from scratch, what ever you prefer. The only thing that you should be concerned about with the batter would be the consistency of the batter. You want the batter to be reasonably thin, but you do not want it to be a runny mess either. The only reason why this matter is that you will be squeezing it out of a tiny hole at a fairly fast rate which, if the batter is not fairly fluid, can lead to explosive results. And frankly, not the fun type of explosive when it comes time to clean up. If your batter is lumpy if mixed by hand, use an electric mixer.
Food coloring- choose whatever colors you like. I suggest high contrast colors for extra fun for the visual part of this project. Colors that contrast well together are on opposite sides of the color wheel. I use gell food colorings for bright colors. You can use liquid colors, but be warned that it can potentially wreak havoc on the consistency of your batter.
Squeeze Bottles- these allow for accurate and detailed dispension of your batter. The are the same thing as those condiment squeeze bottles, but having clear ones help gauge the saturation of color in you pancake batter. If you are not a great shot when it comes to pouring things acuratetly through the mouth of another container, you may want to consider using a funnel to get it through the opening of the bottle.
Griddle- obviously, if you're wanting a cooked pancake your going to need to cook it on something. I had a giddle handy and therefore used it, but if you do not, use a frying skillet with a large, flat base.
Step 2: Prepare the Guns of Fabulouse Flapjacks
Since we will be making pancakes with greater amounts of detail, we will need a mode of dispense that allows for detail. That is where the squeeze bottles come in.
The first thing that you're going to want to do is divide the batter into the bottles. If you are not good at pouring precisely, you may want to use a funnel to limit mess. The amount you pour into each should reflect what you are planning on doing if you are planing on using one color more than the others, make sure that color's bottle has more batter. Set aside some batter so that it can be used to fill in your hotcake art later.
Add your food coloring and shake. Make sure that you shake the coloring in well. You should not see tone variation withing the color of the batter by the time it is finished.
Tip: It's better to start out with less food coloring, you can always add more coloring in later.
Step 3: Griddle Time
Basically, the Idea of this project is to just have fun, so do what ever is fun for you. Be creative.
Here's a couple of Ideas to get you started.
elegant- make Cris-crosses, spirals, boxes, loops you dont need to fill in the background as long as there are points within your line that meet with other lines.
Smileys- make some smiley/emoticon faces and let them cook momentarily before making a circle around the face and filling it in with the opposite color.
Scribble- pretty self explanatory scribble to your hearts desire. If you want to make it two tone, just scribble over the top of your already established scribble.
themed- make pancakes in a common theme. Whether that theme be Doctor Who, Star Wars, Lovecraft, or otherwise is entirely up to you. Just start by making the basic outline features and then fill it in according to the color of your subject.
Speckled- if you have plenty of one of your other bottles but are running out of the other, you may want to consider speckling them to still make them two tone. You just squeeze the bottle if it's very low and it should sputter out little droplets. Make a circle around the splatter area with the other color and fill it in.
Step 4: Serving Idea
When you serve your pancakes you may want to try some different ideas to make them more aesthetically pleasing. Of course, you can always just stack them right on top of each other if all you wanted out of the project was the fun of preparing it. However, if you made theme pancakes you may want to arrange them into a scene, or if you made some plain pancakes you can just put one of the decorative ones on top.
Anyways, the fun colors of the pancake make them great for kids, house guests, and of course for the self entertainment.