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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Pancakes on a Stick + On a Stick! by Matt Armendariz (cookbook review)

Pancakes on a Stick
More about those in a moment, but now let's take a look at this great cookbook...

On A Stick!

Author: Matt Armendariz
Publisher: Quirk Books
Soft Cover: 179 pages + ingredient index & conversion chart

Photos: oh, YES

Chapters/Sections: Introduction, Sticks & Skewers, Dips & Sauces, Savory Foods on a Stick, Sweet Foods on a Stick

Cool Features: Armendariz's wonderful photography (one of the things that brings me back again and again to his blog, Matt Bites...I knew I'd be hooked on this book, as well). Plus, the great little section on Sticks & Skewers in which you can both see and read about great choices and which applications to use them with.

(a few of the) Recipes Destined for my Kitchen: Chicken and Waffles, Beef Teriyaki, Ground Shrimp on Sugarcane, Savory Tofu Dango, Cocktail Cubes, Fudge Pops, Sweet Tofu Dango, Caprese Sticks, Frozen Elvis

My Thoughts/Review: Irresistible. Food on a stick is just good fun. You can find everything from the expected (like Corn Dogs and Candy Apples) to the unexpected (think Spaghetti and Meatballs...remember, it's ON A STICK!). Like I mentioned, the photography is gorgeous and bound to make your belly start to rumble. This could be an essential book to keep on your shelf for entertaining ideas...think about it. Your guests are walking around, drink in one hand, food on a stick in the other. Makes you smile, doesn't it?

Recipes I've tried so far: 
Breakfast Pancake Dogs...or as we have always referred to them- Pancakes on a Stick! I adapted the recipe slightly. Matt's called for uncooked sausages dipped in the pancake batter. I was worried and sure enough, my sausages didn't cook through, so I abandoned that after four and decided to cook the rest of them before dipping. I am pretty picky about sausage (especially breakfast sausage), anyway. Bob Evans is my favorite store-bought brand and I like it done (like, without question cooked through) with lots of delicious caramelization on the outside.

 Also, I didn't have enough oil and I didn't want to run to market...and I'm far too lazy to pull my mini-deep fryer that I begged for, finally got and proceeded to use only twice out of the basement. And I never measure the oil temperature...I just gauge it from looking and testing. So, this could be the reason my sausages didn't cook through. Okay, it probably is, but anyway... It worked beautifully for me after this. The pancake batter itself was delicious, too. We ate them far too quickly...wishing I had another package of sausages to cook up.
Pancakes on a Stick
Pancakes on a Stick (Breakfast Pancake Dogs)
adapted from On a Stick! by Matt Armendariz
yield: 16 with batter left over

16 wooden cocktail picks/small skewers
5 cups vegetable oil
16 uncooked breakfast sausage links
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup whole milk
1 large egg
maple syrup, for drizzling
skewered sausage
Preheat oil in a large, heavy pot of medium-high heat. Thread each sausage link onto a pick and set aside.

Make the pancake batter by sifting the dry ingredients together into a medium bowl. Whisk wet ingredients in a separate bowl until well combined. Pour wet into dry and whisk gently until no lumps remain.

Once oil reaches 375° F, dip each sausage pick into batter, rolling to coat evenly (I think that having the batter in a tall, deep vessel like I do for corn dogs works perfectly) and carefully place entire pick in pot of hot oil.

Fry in small batches ~5 minutes, or until golden. Carefully remove each pick from oil and drain on paper towels. Serve hot with maple syrup.
Pancakes on a Stick
We ALL loved them. We used to buy the kind in the freezer every now and again. No more. These will be made in triplicate (at least)...and often.

I also tried Chocolate-Covered Cheesecake. Was it delicious? Um. Of course it was.
Chocolate Covered Cheesecake on a stick

I received a copy of this book to review from the publisher, Quirk Books.  I received no compensation and all opinions stated in this post are 100% mine.