Cornmeal and Blueberry Pancakes with Lemon Curd and Lavender Syrup

Cornmeal and Blueberry Pancakes with Lemon Curd and Lavender Syrup
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About This Recipe

As a Napa Valley local, I've always been inspired by the abundant flavors and ingredients that are found in this region. One morning, I woke up craving a breakfast dish that could capture the essence of California wine country. That's when I came up with the idea for Cornmeal and Blueberry Pancakes with Lemon Curd and Lavender Syrup. These pancakes blend the rustic texture of cornmeal with the sweet burst of blueberries, and the lemon curd and lavender syrup pay homage to our beautiful citrus orchards and fragrant lavender fields.

When it comes to side dishes, I love serving these pancakes with a fresh fruit salad made from locally sourced fruits, like peaches, plums, and cherries, which can be found at the Napa Valley Farmers Market. A dollop of Greek yogurt on the side adds a tangy and creamy contrast to the pancakes. If you're in the mood for something savory, a side of crispy bacon or a slice of avocado toast would pair well with the dish.

For dessert, I'd recommend something light and refreshing, like a homemade lemon sorbet or a lavender-infused panna cotta. These desserts will complement the flavors in the pancakes and leave your palate feeling cleansed and refreshed.

Sourcing your ingredients from local producers is key to creating an authentic Napa Valley dining experience. The Napa Valley Farmers Market is a great place to find fresh blueberries, lemons, and lavender. You can also visit nearby farms like Long Meadow Ranch and Hudson Ranch, which offer seasonal produce and unique artisanal products.

When it comes to wine pairings, I recommend choosing a wine that complements the dish without overpowering the delicate flavors. A crisp and fruity Sauvignon Blanc from St. Supéry Estate Vineyards & Winery would be a delightful choice, offering notes of citrus and passion fruit that will enhance the lemon curd and blueberries in the pancakes. Alternatively, a lightly sparkling Moscato d'Asti from Castello di Amorosa would add a playful touch to your brunch, with its delicate sweetness and floral aromas.

The Cornmeal and Blueberry Pancakes with Lemon Curd and Lavender Syrup truly embody the essence of Napa Valley and California wine country. The recipe showcases the region's diverse flavors and ingredients while highlighting the importance of supporting local farmers and producers. If you're ever in the area, I encourage you to explore the beautiful vineyards, taste the exquisite wines, and immerse yourself in the local food culture. Some of my favorite wineries to visit include the picturesque Frog's Leap Winery, the renowned Robert Mondavi Winery, and the family-owned boutique winery, Truchard Vineyards. Each offers a unique experience that will leave you with unforgettable memories and a deeper appreciation for our beloved Napa Valley.

Happy cooking, and cheers to your Napa Valley-inspired culinary adventures!

Hero Ingredient Spotlight: Lavender

The aromatic lavender is not just for fragrances; it’s a culinary superstar in the kitchen! When used in cooking, especially with sweet dishes like these Cornmeal and Blueberry Pancakes, it adds a floral undertone that elevates the overall flavor profile. The lavender used in this recipe isn't just any lavender, but culinary lavender, specifically grown to be consumed. Found abundantly in the Napa Valley wine country, this ingredient is a nod to the area's fragrant lavender fields. Not only does lavender provide an enticing aroma and flavor, but it's also known for its calming properties. Whether in syrups, baked goods, or infused into beverages, lavender is sure to add a touch of elegance to any dish.

How To Infuse Your Syrup With Lavender

  1. Start with Quality Lavender: Always use dried culinary lavender. Fresh lavender can sometimes be too overpowering. The dried version provides just the right hint of flavor.
  2. Low and Slow: When infusing your maple syrup, always keep the heat on low. This prevents the syrup from becoming too thick or caramelized and ensures the lavender imparts its fragrance without burning.
  3. Strain Thoroughly: After simmering, strain the syrup through a fine-mesh sieve to remove all lavender particles. This will give you a clear, beautifully infused syrup ready to drizzle over your pancakes.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Can I use frozen blueberries instead of fresh ones? Yes, you can use frozen blueberries. Just make sure to thaw and drain them to avoid adding extra moisture to the batter.
  2. What's the difference between culinary lavender and regular lavender? Culinary lavender is specifically grown for consumption, ensuring it's free from pesticides and other chemicals. Regular or ornamental lavender may be treated with substances you wouldn't want to ingest.
  3. How do I store leftover lavender-infused syrup? Store any leftover syrup in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. You can also use it in teas, cocktails, or over ice cream!
  4. Can I make these pancakes gluten-free? Absolutely! Substitute the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free flour blend. Ensure it contains xanthan gum, which helps with the texture.
  5. What if I don't have buttermilk on hand? You can make a quick buttermilk substitute by adding 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar to 1 cup of milk. Let it sit for about 10 minutes before using.

Tips for Success

  1. Don't Overmix the Batter: Mixing until just combined ensures fluffy pancakes. Overmixing can lead to a dense texture.
  2. Test Your Skillet: Before cooking your entire batch, pour a small amount of batter to test. If it sizzles upon contact and forms bubbles around the edges, you’re good to go.
  3. Keep Pancakes Warm: As you make each batch, keep cooked pancakes warm in an oven set to a low temperature. This ensures that every pancake is served perfectly warm and delicious.

Recipe Overview

Recipe:
Cornmeal and Blueberry Pancakes with Lemon Curd and Lavender Syrup
Author:
Lily Anderson
Season:
Spring
Yield:
4 servings
Calories Per Serving:
645
Prep Time:
PT15M
Cook Time:
PT20M
Total Time:
PT35M

Ingredients List

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 3/4 cups buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup prepared lemon curd
  • 1/4 cup dried culinary lavender
  • 1 cup pure maple syrup

Step-by-Step Directions

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, eggs, and melted butter.
  3. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Gently fold in the blueberries.
  4. Preheat a large nonstick skillet or griddle over medium heat. Grease with butter or cooking spray.
  5. Pour 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake onto the skillet. Cook until bubbles form on the surface and the edges appear set, then flip and cook until the other side is golden brown. Repeat with the remaining batter.
  6. In a small saucepan, combine the lavender and maple syrup over low heat. Simmer for 5 minutes, then strain the syrup through a fine-mesh sieve, discarding the lavender.
  7. Serve the pancakes with a dollop of lemon curd and a drizzle of lavender syrup.

Share Your Results

Was it everything you dreamed it could be? Let me know how it turned out for you and share a picture on social media with the hashtag #LilyCooksNapa

Hello and welcome to Napa Home Chef! We're thrilled you're joining us to explore the vibrant world of wine country cooking. Our team has crafted bold, creative recipes inspired by Napa Valley's lush landscapes, bountiful harvests, and world-renowned wines. We hope you enjoy the journey with us!

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