And so it begins! I’ve dusted off the camera and will endeavor to take more photos to share with you, our friends and guests. This is my first experience with a DSLR, and as with everything else I’ve accomplished in my life, I will attempt to learn it on my own. Of course, there is always YouTube and I hope that anyone reading this will feel free to weigh in with tips and constructive criticism. All comments are welcome and encouraged!
This morning we served our Pineapple Pancake for breakfast. If you’ve stayed with us, you know that we don’t usually follow the typical B&B protocol and offer the traditional “flap jacks” and waffles. All of our pancakes are baked and served in our adorable little cast iron skillets. A cute presentation, yes. But practically, they keep the pancakes hot much longer.
Our pineapple pancake was inspired by a seasonal offering at Sunny Point Café in Asheville, one of our favorite breakfast joints. I’ve been working on an idea to turn a traditional pineapple upside down cake into breakfast for a while now. When I experienced their Hearty Organic Oatmeal Pancakes, it all came together. As with most of my recipes, I take inspiration from one thing and set out to make it my own.
Here’s the recipe I settled on (serves 4):
• ½ Cup Whole Wheat Flour
• ½ Cup All Purpose Flour
• ½ Cup Old Fashioned Oats
• 2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
• 1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
• 2 Tablespoons Sugar
• ½ Teaspoon Salt
• 1 ½ Cups Half & Half
• 2 Large Eggs
• ½ Teaspoon Vanilla
• ½ Cup Unsalted Butter (1 stick) – melted
• 4 Teaspoons Light Brown Sugar
• Skinned, cored and sectioned Pineapple
• 1 Cup Fresh or Frozen Blueberries
Combine the dry ingredients and set aside. Whisk together the wet ingredients and gently combine with dry. Fold all but 4 Tablespoons of the butter into the mixture and let set for at least 15 minutes.
Put 4 cast iron skillets into center rack of the oven and preheat oven to 350°. When oven comes up to temp, remove skillets. Divide the remaining 4 teaspoons of butter between them and brush to coat. Sprinkle brown sugar over melted butter, dividing evenly. Cover the bottom of each skillet with cut pineapple and blueberries. Divide pancake mixture and pour over fruit. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes until firm in the middle.
I serve our Oak Hill Pineapple Pancakes topped with caramelized pineapple, freshly whipped cream and garnish them with a maraschino cherry. Today, I served the pancakes with bacon, a strawberry/peach/banana smoothie (for first course) and our “Bag It” offering was a German chocolate muffin.
As for the photograph…I used my Nikon D3100 on the lowest aperture setting (mine only goes to 5.6). I’ve set up a little photo area in our office which offers a lot of natural light. Earlier attempts just didn’t produce accurate color and weren’t what I consider appetizing. A little reading and chatting with photographer friends led me to the conclusion that natural light is the best way to get good food pics without spending buckets of $ on special equipment. So that’s where I will start.
First, I wish I had taken the photo a little quicker, before the whipped cream had melted! Second, I think I need to get a different lens. One thing I have read is that food photographers use a macro lens, which allows them a deeper depth of field. I could be totally off base here, but would like the background to be a little more blurred.
I’m looking forward to hearing from all you photogs. Hang in there with me and I hope my pictures will improve as we go along.
Deb Isenberg, Innkeeper
Oak Hill on Love Lane Bed and Breakfast