The batter for pancakes should be smooth, and thin enough to run freely when turned onto the griddle. In order to have all the cakes of the same size an equal quantity of batter must be used for each cake. It should be poured steadily at one point, so the batter will flow evenly in all directions, making the cake perfectly round. An iron spoonful of batter makes a cake of good size; but if a larger one is wanted, use a ladle or cup; for if the batter is put on the hot griddle by separate spoonfuls, the first becomes a little hardened before the second is added, and the cake will not be evenly baked, or have so good an appearance. Lastly, the baking is of great importance. The cakes must be well browned on both sides, the color even and uniform on every part. To effect this the griddle must be perfectly clean and evenly heated. A soap-stone griddle is the best, as it holds the heat well, and as it requires no greasing. The cakes baked thus are by some considered more wholesome. The griddle should stand on the range for some time before it is needed in order to get thoroughly and evenly heated. Where an iron griddle is used, it should also be given time to become evenly heated; and while the cakes are baking it should be moved so the edges may in turn come over the hottest part of the range. It must be wiped off and greased after each set of cakes is baked. A piece of salt pork on a fork is the best thing for greasing, as it makes an even coating, and too much grease is not likely to be used. An iron griddle is often allowed by careless cooks to collect a crust of burned grease around the edges. When in this condition, the cakes will not, of course, be properly baked. The griddle should be hot enough to hiss when the batter is turned onto it. Serve the cakes as soon as baked, in a folded napkin on a hot plate. Two plates should be used, so while one is being passed the next griddleful may be prepared to serve.
Stir two cupfuls of milk into two beaten eggs; add enough flour to make a thin batter. Add a half teaspoonful of salt and a heaping teaspoonful of baking-powder. Sour milk can be used, in which case omit the baking-powder and add a half teaspoonful of soda. The baking-powder or soda should not be put in until just before beginning to bake the cakes. The cakes will be lighter and better if the eggs are beaten separately, and the whipped whites added the last thing.
1 tablespoonful of butter.
1 tablespoonful of sugar.
2 cupfuls of flour.
1 teaspoonful of baking-powder.
Rub the butter and sugar to a cream, add the beaten eggs, then the flour, in which the baking-powder has been sifted. Add enough milk to make a smooth, thin batter.
Make the same batter as for plain cakes, using half boiled rice and half flour. Any of the cereals - hominy, oatmeal, cracked wheat, etc. - can be used in the same way, utilizing any small quantities left over; a little butter is sometimes added.
Soak stale bread in hot water until moistened; press out the water. To two cupfuls of softened bread, add two beaten eggs, a teaspoonful of salt, a half cupful of flour, and enough milk to make a thin, smooth batter; add, the last thing, a teaspoonful of baking-powder, or use soda if sour milk has been used in the batter.
Pour a little boiling water on a cupful of cornmeal, and let it stand half an hour. Add a teaspoonful of salt, a tablespoonful of sugar, one egg and two cupfuls of flour. Add enough milk to make a smooth batter, and a teaspoonful of baking-powder just before baking. Instead of white flour rye meal may be used: one cupful of rye to one of cornmeal, a tablespoonful of molasses instead of the sugar, and soda in place of baking-powder.
Scald a cupful of yellow meal in a quart of boiling milk. Add a half teaspoonful of salt; when cold add a quarter of a compressed yeast-cake, and enough buckwheat flour to make a soft batter. Beat it well together. Let it rise over night. In the morning stir in a tablespoonful of molasses and a teaspoonful of soda. Although the above method is the old and better way, these cakes can be made in the morning, and baking-powder used instead of yeast; in which case divide the batter, and add the baking-powder, one half at a time.