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If you like your pancakes the size of a Frisbee, then this is the recipe you’ve been waiting for.
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Recipe ideas for this column come from many places — cooking shows, food websites, magazines and cookbooks to name a few. But today’s inspiration came from my dad.

Anyone who knows my dad knows that his favorite dessert is pie — blueberry, lemon meringue, banana cream, Dutch apple — any pie will do. A few months ago he was telling me about this incredible sour cream raisin pie he had years ago at a restaurant in California.

Making healthy, great-tasting pie is a bit tricky, but I was intrigued by the sour cream raisin combination and thought it might work well for a pancake recipe.

Beyond its use as a baked potato topper or creamy dip, sour cream is a great fat replacer in baked goods. Sour cream’s acidity helps to tenderize baked goods such as cakes, brownies, muffins, and pancakes, making them delicate and moist.

Sour Cream Raisin Pancakes with Maple Cream. (Photo: Darlene Zimmerman)

To keep the calories in check, we used reduced-fat sour cream. Reduced-fat sour cream is a combination of cream and skim milk, whereas regular, full-fat sour cream consists of just cream. Although the calorie difference may seem minimal (60 calories for two tablespoons of regular sour cream and 40 calories for reduced-fat), when using sour cream in larger quantities, the savings adds up.

If you’re cooking for two, don’t let this pancake recipe that serves six scare you off.

Freezing pancakes is so easy. Once the pancakes have cooled completely, set them on a parchment paper-lined cookie sheet in a single layer, making sure they don’t touch each other. Place in the freezer for about 45 minutes. Once completely frozen, transfer pancakes to resealable freezer bags, label and date, and return to the freezer. If packaged properly, frozen pancakes should stay fresh for up to three months.

There are a few options to reheating frozen pancakes. Pop them into the toaster until they’re warm and slightly crispy on the edges. You can also reheat frozen pancakes in a 375 degree oven. Place pancakes on a cookie sheet in a single layer and cover tightly with foil to keep them from drying out. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes.

Or, for a softer pancake, arrange on a microwave-safe plate and heat uncovered for 30 to 60 seconds, or until heated through. Stacking them when reheating may cause them to stick together.

Darlene Zimmerman is a registered dietitian in Henry Ford Hospital’s Heart & Vascular Institute. For questions about today’s recipe, call 313-972-1920.

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Sour Cream Raisin Pancakes with Maple Cream Syrup

Serves: 6 (3 pancakes with 2 tablespoons syrup per serving) / Prep time: 10 minutes / Total time: 35 minutes

PANCAKES

⅔ cup raisins

1 cup boiling water

2 tablespoons reserved raisin soaking water

½ cup white whole-wheat flour

½ cup all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

⅛ teaspoon salt

½ cup reduced-fat sour cream

½ cup 1% milk

1 large egg

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 teaspoon canola oil

MAPLE CREAM SYRUP

⅔ cup maple syrup

3 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream

Place raisins in boiling water for 10 to 15 minutes, allowing them to soften and plump. Drain raisins, reserving 2 tablespoons raisin water to add to pancake batter.

In a large bowl, combine whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together sour cream, milk, egg, vanilla extract, and reserved raisin soaking water.

Pour liquid mixture over dry ingredients and stir until batter is just combined. Add raisins and stir until just combined.

Coat a nonstick griddle or skillet with 1 teaspoon oil and set heat to medium-high. When hot, spoon batter (about 3 tablespoons per pancake) onto griddle. Turn pancakes when tops form bubbles and edges appear cooked. Briefly cook second side, just long enough to brown. Repeat with remaining batter. Batter will yield about 18 pancakes. To prepare the maple cream syrup, in a small bowl whisk together maple syrup and sour cream until incorporated.

Created by Darlene Zimmerman, MS, RD, for Heart Smart®.

316 calories (14% from fat), 5 grams fat (3 grams sat. fat, 0 grams trans fat), 62 grams carbohydrates, 6 grams protein, 273 mg sodium, 46 mg cholesterol, 174 mg calcium, 2 grams fiber. Food exchanges: 4 starch, 1 fat.

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