Native to the Southwest, specifically Arizona and New Mexico, blue corn is slightly higher in protein than yellow or white corn.
It is always dried on the cob and usually ground into meal. New Mexican cuisine uses far more blue cornmeal than we do in Arizona, but you’ll find blue corn in some variation at any Southwestern restaurant.
This pancake recipe is from my cookbook Par Fork! The Golf Resort Cookbook. Besides pancakes, I use blue cornmeal in mini corn muffins and as a coating for pan-fried trout. Anything you use yellow cornmeal for, you can use blue cornmeal instead.
This particular pancake recipe isn’t as gritty as other blue cornmeal pancakes I’ve tried, and that’s because there is a higher ratio of flour to cornmeal.
You can experiment with how much cornmeal you use, up to half of the total flour/cornmeal measurement.
If you use equal amounts of flour and cornmeal (1-1/4 cups each), you’ll notice a big texture difference and the pancakes will be less tender, but no less tasty.
Blue Corn Pancakes
Makes 12 (4-inch) pancakes
2 cups flour
1/2 cup blue cornmeal
1/3 cup sugar
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1-1/2 cups buttermilk *
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1-1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries (optional)
1. Stir the first 5 ingredients (flour through baking powder) together.
2. Beat the eggs with the buttermilk until well blended. Pour egg mixture over flour mixture and stir until just mixed (small lumps are OK, and for tender cakes, it’s better to under mix than over mix). Stir in melted butter. The batter will be very thick.
3. Heat a griddle or nonstick skillet over medium heat. Brush with butter or spray with nonstick spray.
4. Ladle 1/4 cup of batter for each pancake onto hot surface. (Sprinkle with a few blueberries if using.) Cook until edges start to dry and bubbles burst on surface, about 2 to 3 minutes.
5. Flip and cook on the other side until brown, about another minute or so. Keep warm in a 200°F oven until all the cakes are cooked. Serve with your favorite syrup.
*I keep a container of dried buttermilk powder in my refrigerator (find it on the baking aisle), but I do prefer using fresh buttermilk in pancakes that call for it. I just don’t always have it on hand, so I will use the powdered buttermilk in a pinch.