from-scratch convenience foods

I don't usually buy a lot of convenience foods, except when we're going camping--and I tend to hit the natural foods aisle for better quality treats in this case.  So last year I picked up some multi-grain pancake mix (Bob's red mill, I think) for a trip.  And darn if that wasn't handy to have around even after getting home.  One thing I especially liked, is if I'm going to impulsively make pancakes or waffles on a whim or under extreme sleepiness/hunger, I probably won't reach for the futzy whole-grain recipe:  these were healthier, and are really a better morning fuel than their white-flour brethren. 

So after that was gone, and I had a house full of really good wheat flour, I decided to just make my own.  I found a recipe in Whole Grain Baking (a King Arthur Flour book):

Homemade whole grain pancake mix

3 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
4 cups wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
3 T sugar
3 T baking powder
1 T salt
1 T baking soda
3/4 cup vegetable oil

Grind the oats in a food processor until fine but not a powder.  Combine with the remaining dry ingredients, and mix while drizzling in the oil.  (I just used the food processor for a half-batch trial).  The mix should just hold together when squeezed in your hand--adjust the oil as needed to get to this point.  Store in an airtight container in the freezer indefinitely.

To make:
(Tip:  write this formula on some freezer tape and put it right on your container in the freezer)

Combine 1 and 1/2 cups of mix, 1/2 cup each yogurt and milk (or use buttermilk), 1 T orange juice, and one egg.  Let stand 15 minutes, the mix will thicken up a lot as the oats and wheat flours absorb moisture. (Also note, the original recipe also only calls for 1 cup of mix per batch, but I found that really thin.  1 1/2 cups seemed perfect, but you might need to adjust for your flour and personal taste. ) 

I made a half-batch the first time to test, and while I was happy with it, I might try tweaking a little next time around.  I'm pretty sure I added a little extra sugar.  You could also add honey during the final mix as well.  Fun additions might be ground flax seed, or cornmeal, and I might try melted butter instead of the oil, at least in part.  Of course you can add fruit or nuts (or chocolate chips) as you please.

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  1. Mmm. sounds yummy. I'll have to give it a try. I sometimes make a double or triple batch of waffles on a weekend and freeze them. Pop them into the toaster and they make a great breakfast- much better than the store bought ones.

  2. I suspect these would work for waffles, though I haven't tried it yet. I like the frozen waffle trick too!


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