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Everyone loves pancakes. In this recipe, fluffy pancakes combine beautifully with bananas, pecans and caramel sauce, and are served with a delicious ricotta cream. Perfect for breakfast, brunch, or after a light meal. Even better, most components can be prepared well ahead of time. The sliced bananas can be stirred through the batter just prior to cooking, or arranged over the top of each individual pancake as it cooks. If serving as a dessert, rum or brandy can be added to the caramel pecan sauce if you wish.
For Caramel Pecan Sauce
- 6 ounces caramel candies, chopped
- 3⁄4 cup cream (light, whipping)
- 1⁄3 cup pecan halves, chopped
- 1 tablespoon coconut, flaked (desiccated)
- 1 tablespoon rum or 1 tablespoon brandy (optional)
For Ricotta cream
- 1 cup smooth ricotta cheese
- 4 tablespoons confectioners' sugar (icing sugar)
- 2 tablespoons orange juice
- 1⁄2-1 teaspoon orange zest, finely chopped
For Fluffy Banana Pancakes
- 1 cup plain flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1⁄2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 1 pinch salt
- 10 fluid ounces buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 large eggs, whites and yolks separated
- 1⁄2 teaspoon vanilla essence
- 1 tablespoon caster sugar (superfine sugar)
- 2 medium bananas, peeled and sliced
- Caramel Pecan Sauce: In a small non-stick saucepan, melt caramel pieces gently with the cream, stirring occasionally until smooth and blended.
- Add pecans and flaked coconut (and rum or brandy if desired), stir to combine with sauce, then remove from heat.
- Serve warm over pancakes.
- Can be prepared the night before, then heated in the microwave until warm.
- Ricotta Cream: Place ricotta cheese, confectioners sugar, orange juice and orange zest in a bowl.
- Beat with a whisk until well combined.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Can be prepared the night before.
- Fluffy Banana Pancakes: Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a bowl.
- Place buttermilk in a 2-cup glass-measuring cup and add butter.
- Microwave on high for 2 minutes, until butter melts.
- Lightly beat yolks, then combine with the buttermilk and butter mixture, whisking to incorporate.
- Then add vanilla essence and caster sugar (superfine sugar) and stir until sugar is dissolved.
- Add buttermilk mixture to the flour, and whisk together until batter becomes thick and smooth.
- Batter can be prepared to this stage, the night before.
- Beat egg whites in a clean dry bowl until stiff.
- Fold whites carefully into batter until evenly mixed (and the sliced bananas can be added at this stage, too, if you wish - otherwise, see step 20).
- Heat a 6-inch diameter fry pan or skillet and brush lightly with melted butter, or spray with vegetable oil.
- For each pancake, pour 1/2 to 3/4 cup batter into pan, and swirl around quickly to distribute evenly over bottom of pan.
- Cook until bubbles begin to appear on the surface, then lay some banana slices over the top.
- When pancakes are lightly browned on the bottom (about two minutes), flip over and cook other side.
- When cooked through, transfer pancake to a baking tray and keep warm in a low oven while you cook the rest of the batter (Each pancake should take about two minutes per side).
- To serve, drizzle warm caramel pecan sauce over each pancake, and top with a generous dollop or two of ricotta cream.