Recipe: Haven Cakes With Apple Syrup
If you’re in the Berkshires and need to meet with someone, in a place where you can get a nice pastry and coffee or a local/organic/homemade meal in a convivial (and wired) setting, where do you go? Very likely, it’ll be one of the two Haven Café and Bakery locations (Lenox and Great Barrington, Mass.), which are favorites on just about everyone’s list. The cafes’ motto is “Taste the Love,” and you really can. Chef/owner Shelly Williams shares the recipes of some of Haven’s tastiest offerings with Rural Intelligence readers.
When I was growing up, the smell of fresh pancakes in the morning just felt like home. As a mom, I knew how much kids love these warm, sweet little flat muffins and my kids were no exception. As a chef, I of course wanted to take them to the next level of delicious.
In this version, the use of cornmeal, clarified butter, cardamom apple syrup and crème fraiche does just that. At the café, Haven Cakes are a favorite among our regulars and even our staff. We also serve a pear and candied ginger version, but that’s another day… and worth a trip to Haven!
Makes 6 medium or 3 large
2 tbs unsalted butter
3 large Pink Lady or Golden Delicious apples (about 1½ lbs), peeled, cored, cut into ½” thick wedges
1 tbs plus ½ cup organic maple syrup
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground cardamom
1 cup all purpose flour
¼ cup good quality yellow cornmeal
2 tbs light brown sugar
1½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup plain yogurt
2 tbs clarified butter
Additional unsalted butter
Additional maple syrup
For Apple Syrup
Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add apples and 1 tbs maple syrup; sauté until apples are tender and just starting to brown, about 5 minutes. Add remaining maple syrup, cinnamon and cardamom. Keep warm.
Combine first 6 ingredients in large bowl, whisk to blend. Whisk buttermilk, yogurt and egg in medium bowl to blend; add to dry ingredients and stir until just blended but still lumpy. Gently mix in the clarified butter.
Heat griddle or large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Spread a thin coating of butter over the griddle and let melt. Working in batches, drop batter by 1/3 cupfuls (or 2/3 cupfuls for large), spacing apart. Cook pancakes until brown on bottom and bubbles form on top, about 3 minutes. Turn pancakes over and cook until bottoms are brown and pancake are barely firm to the touch. Transfer to plates. Repeat with remaining batter, adding more butter to griddle as needed.
Spoon apple syrup over pancakes. Dollop crème fraiche over apples. Serve immediately, passing additional maple syrup and crème fraiche.