There is nothing that says “Hello Saturday” morning better than a grand slam breakfast. It is actually more like lunch and breakfast combined by the time my two sleepy head teenagers finally come out from their caves.
The boys wanted eggs, bacon, toast, fresh fruit and even pancakes. I said sure as those all items I usually have in stock. I baked the crispy bacon in the oven, sliced up the strawberries, scrambled the last of the eggs and everything was fine and dandy until it came to making the pancakes.
I had intended to make just some easy and quick bisquick pancakes, that by the way call for both eggs and milk. Hmm well have no fear I did have a bit of plain yogurt in refrigerator as eggs and milk are so over rated. This subsitution worked lovely. Now the boys were asking if we could make chocoloate chip pancakes. We live in Hong Kong and they do not have chocolate chips except in the specialty stores. Plan B, I had found some hershey kisses I stashed in the freezer for emergencies under the frozen brocoli and put those to good use. Now here comes the sticky part, no pun intended, someone not pointing any fingers, has finished off the last drop of Mr. Butterworths syrup. I only realized this after batches of my delicious fluffy chocolate chip pancakes were coming hot off the griddle.
I asked the boys if they could just use honey, drizzle some corn syrup or sprinkle a little powdered sugar on top as these were rough times and this calls for desperate measures. However, really I thought to myself how hard can it possibly be to make a quick pancake syrup as really all it is a simple syrup made with brown sugar.
So off I went to Bam’s Kitchen to give it the good old college try to make homemade pancake syrup. My first attempt was actually not a complete failure as it made a delicious molasses hard candy. (FYI if you take your simple syrup temperature to a hearty boil and you will make candy) Note to self do not try to help your kids with their calculus homework, talk on the phone or decide to unload the dishwasher while you are making pancake syrup.
My second attempt took three minutes and it was a perfectly delightful rich and thick syrup that takes it time dripping down the tower of pancakes. My kids said it tasted even better than Mrs. Butterworths and I could not agree more.
All I used was three simple ingredients; brown sugar, vanilla and water. Here is the list of ingredients on the back of Mrs. Butterworth’s syrup; High fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, water, salt, cellulose gum, molasses, potassium sorbate (preservative), sodium hexametaphosphate, citric acid, caramel color, natural and artificial flavors. What exactly is sodium hexametaphosphate and why would I want this in my pancake syrup?
Thermometers and measuring devices (such as a candy thermometer) are for those sissy cooks but in hindsight this might have been slightly helpful.
Perfectly delightful thick and rich syrup that takes it time dripping down the tower of pancakes. My kids said it tasted even better than Mrs. Butterworths.
Step 1: Mix brown sugar, water and vanilla in saucepan and bring to a very gentle boil for 3 minutes. Do not cover and stir frequently. The goal according to our dear friend Charles from Five Euro Food is "you need to be looking for the thread stage when boiling the sugar so do not allow the temperature to go above 111 degrees Celsius"
Step 2: Remove from burner and allow to cool. The syrup will thicken upon cooling. Do not allow the syrup to boil vigourously or leave on longer or your will have hard candy. If after 10 minutes of cooling your syrup is still not thick enough then reboil for another 30 seconds to a minute.
Step 3: Serve immediately over pancakes, icecream or other desserts.