Molasses Syrup

Our family LOVES pancakes and it’s my husband’s specialty! Last week I made some (mostly forgettable) banana nut pancakes and was searching for a quick syrup to make to serve with them. We try to make our own most of the time since I’m not crazy about all the additives in store bought syrup. We do use pure maple syrup (but sometimes at an alarming and therefore expensive rate), however, we usually top pancakes with yogurt, fruit syrups, and/or homemade syrups. So, while I can’t take credit for coming up with this yummy syrup recipe, I was very excited to find it! I doubled Simple Bites Recipe because if I’m going to the trouble I want some leftover for other meals.

In short, this was DELICIOUS! We love molasses cookies and the flavor was very reminiscent of the warm, spicy flavors of a fresh cookie. A few notes – 1) a little goes a long way, 2) this was amazing on hot cereal like oatmeal and cream of wheat, and 3) it stores well and would probably be quite good on vanilla ice cream or gingerbread.

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MOLASSES SYRUP
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1 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. molasses
3/4 c. water
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 Tb. salted butter

In a small pot, whisk together sugar, molasses, water, and cinnamon over medium heat. Bring to a slow boil and continue stirring until ingredients are fully incorporated and syrup thickens. Remove from heat and whisk in butter. Cool slightly. Transfer to a pitcher for serving or a glass jar for storing.

Yields: 1 1/2 cups syrup

**Of note, Simple Bites has 4 other great-looking syrups in this post!

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Grandma’s Vanilla Pudding

Vanilla pudding. So simple, yet so versatile. I felt an acute desire to talk to Grandma as I worked on this recipe. I actually made two batches because my first attempt was lumpy. You see, I was having to make up the cooking directions because this recipe came with ingredients only and Grandma’s not here to ask how she made this. I still don’t think I have it down pat. But, I’ll clue you in to how I made this, and if you want to try your own way, go for it!

To dress up my dish of pudding, I sautéed chopped apples and pecans in butter with a few sprinkles of cinnamon and a drizzle of honey. But you could choose to drizzle a puree of frozen berries over top. Or a dollop of fruit jam. Or just eat it plain-jane vanilla. The possibilities are endless. Simple, yet versatile. Not too sweet, leaving room for tastes to shine through. So much about this recipe reminds me of Grandma.

GRANDMA’S VANILLA PUDDING
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2 c. milk
3 Tbsp honey or 1/4 c. brown sugar
2 eggs, well beaten
3 Tbsp cornstarch or 6 T. flour
1 tsp vanilla
Garnish with fruit, coconut etc.
Heat milk in a saucepan over medium-low heat, whisking frequently to prevent scalding. Beat eggs and honey or brown sugar together. When milk is steaming, slowly whisk in egg mixture.
In a small bowl add cornstarch, dip a few spoonfuls of the hot milk/egg mixture into the bowl and using a fork or whisk, mix until smooth. While whisking, slowly pour in the cornstarch mixture and continue to whisk until pudding thickens.
Turn off heat and stir in the vanilla. Pour into several small bowls, or one larger bowl and press a piece of plastic wrap onto the surface. Refrigerate until cool.
To serve, top with desired fruits or nuts.

Weekend Fare: Waffles & Syrup

These delicious waffles and warm, buttery, rich, homemade syrup make for a wonderful Christmas breakfast or brunch or even just a lazy winter morning treat. We picked up our Belgian waffle maker on a black Friday sale for $10 and it’s awesome! This recipe made not quite enough for my hungry crew. 🙂 I would probably make half again more.

BELGIAN WAFFLES – adapted from allrecipes.com
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4 egg yolks
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. butter, melted
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 Tb. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 Tb. white sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
4 egg whites

Preheat your waffle iron.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, vanilla, buttermilk and butter until well blended. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt and cinnamon; stir into the buttermilk mixture. In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites with an electric mixer until stiff. Fold into the batter.

Spoon batter onto the hot waffle iron, close, and cook until golden brown. Waffles are usually done when the steam subsides.

BUTTERMILK SYRUP – allrecipes.com

1/2 c. butter
1 c. sugar
1 c. buttermilk
1 Tb. vanilla extract
1 Tb. corn syrup
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. baking soda

Bring butter, sugar, buttermilk, vanilla extract, corn syrup, and cinnamon to a simmer in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Once simmering, whisk in baking soda, and cook for 10 seconds before removing from heat. Serve warm.