Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Blackberry Pancakes with Honeyed Persimmon

Adding fresh berries to pancakes turns ordinary breakfast into a tasty, appealing dish. Topping them off with a little honeyed persimmon takes the dish to a very scrumptious level.

Recipes often call for mixing the fresh fruit into the batter along with the other ingredients. But that can result in some mushy berries if the mixing becomes too vigorous. Simply dropping the fruit pieces into the batter as the cakes cook prevents too much break-down and leaves fresher, less-cooked, pretty berries in the finished pancakes.

Fresh Blackberries
If you’re not familiar with cooked persimmon—or persimmons in general—prepare to be pleased. There are two common varieties of persimmon, fuyu and hachiya. It’s the fuyu you want for this recipe.

Hachiya persimmons are the larger ones, with an elongated, acorn or teardrop shape. They have an unfortunate reputation for being mouth-puckering tart and astringent, but that’s only if they’re not ripe enough. Once very ripe, almost pulpy inside, the hachiya persimmon is good for baking into cookies, cakes, puddings, and so forth.

The fuyu is shaped more like a squat tomato and is much sweeter, ready to eat when peeled. This non-astringent variety is tasty in salads or as a snack. Here, I wanted the persimmon to complement the fruity pancakes with a little sweetness of its own. Baking it in a honey broth makes the fuyu both tender and sweet—maple syrup is optional!

Fuyu Persimmon
Note: You can make the honeyed persimmon a day ahead. Place the fruit and broth in a sealable container and refrigerate overnight. Warm gently over low heat while the pancakes cook.

Makes 6-7 pancakes


For the Honeyed Persimmon
  • 1 fuyu persimmon, peeled and cut into small wedges

  • 2 tbsp very hot water
  • 1 tbsp honey

  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

  • sea salt
Peeled, Sliced Persimmon

For the Blackberry Pancakes
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 tsp white sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter, plus more as needed
  • 1 cup fresh, halved blackberries
  • warm maple syrup, for serving
  • cooked bacon (optional)
Halved Blackberries

For the Honeyed Persimmon
  1. Preheat a toaster oven to 350°F.
  2. Place the persimmon wedges in a ramekin (or very small baking dish).
  3. Combine the hot water, honey, and cinnamon in a small bowl and season with salt. Stir well until dissolved. Pour the honey mixture over the persimmon.
  4. Cover the ramekin with foil and bake until the persimmon is soft, about 30 minutes.
  5. Remove the foil and bake until lightly browned, 5-7 minutes longer. Stir a few times and serve over the pancakes.
Persimmon with Honey Mixture 
Persimmon after 30 Minutes
Baked Honeyed Persimmon
For the Blackberry Pancakes
  1. In a large bowl, vigorously whisk the egg until light and fluffy. Whisk in the buttermilk.
  2. In another bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Gradually whisk the flour mixture into the egg mixture until a batter forms.
Flour and Egg Mixtures
Pancake Batter
  1. Heat a cast-iron griddle over medium-high heat. (Place over 2 burners, if needed.)
  2. Add 1 tablespoon of butter and brush over the cooking surface. When the butter begins to sizzle, pour about 1/3 cup batter in circles on the griddle. (Don’t crowd. Work in 2 batches, 3 or 4 pancakes at a time.)
  3. As the bottoms begin to cook and the batter on top begins to bubble and show small holes (2-3 minutes), divide the blackberries and drop on top of the batter. 
Pancakes Beginning to Cook 
Blackberries Added
  1. Gently turn the pancakes over and cook until golden and cooked through, 1-2 minutes longer.
  2. Keep the pancakes warm and repeat with the remaining batter and blackberries. (Brush the griddle with more butter, if needed.)
Pancakes after Turning 
Blackberry Pancakes
To serve, divide the pancakes among plates and drizzle with maple syrup. Scatter honeyed persimmon wedges on top and serve with cooked bacon, if desired.

Blackberry Pancakes with Honeyed Persimmon

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