Buckwheat and Buttermilk Pancakes (with Pears and Maple Syrup)

This weekend we treated ourselves to a fine American breakfast of pancakes with maple syrup. I was inspired by a recipe in Diana Henry’s newly re-published book Roast Figs, Sugar Snow ,which is packed full of cold-weather recipes. As it happens, Sunday was lovely and mild, but the pancakes did set us up perfectly for a trip to Peppa Pig World!

Diana’s recipe for ‘Mile-High Buttermilk Pancakes’ comes with an instruction to “bring them to the table in a mile-high pile as if you’re running your own diner – with a big pot of steaming coffee.”  Diana suggests serving her pancakes with date and pecan butter, which sounds divine too – butter, brown sugar, chopped pecans, dates and vanilla, but my cupboard was sadly lacking in any pecans or dates, so I didn’t make the butter. A few pears in the fruit bowl, did, however, inspire me to do as the Poles do and slice some fruit into some of the pancakes as the batter hit the pan. You can do this with peeled apples too, or even banana. Pancakes are also a great way of using up random bags of flour and since I had some organic buckwheat flour (happens to be gluten free)  in the cupboard, I used that instead of plain flour and sweetened the batter up with cinnamon sugar, instead of caster sugar. That’s what I love about pancake batter – it’s a great vehicle for a little twist or two. Adding the buttermilk and beaten eggs whites to the batter are what make Diana’s pancakes soft and light as air.

I’m looking forward to cooking lots more from Diana’s book and giving it proper credit very soon. I’m also going to be meeting her next week (I am SUPER excited) and am looking forward to asking her what her very favourite recipes are from the book.  Any burning questions for me to ask her?


Buckwheat and Buttermilk Pancakes (with pears and maple syrup)

(adapted from Diana Henry’s Mile-High Buttermilk Pancakes from Roast Figs, Sugar Snow)


250g flour – I used organic buckwheat flour, you can use this or plain

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

a pinch of salt

2 tbsp cinnamon sugar

500ml buttermilk (I made my own by adding 2 tbsp lemon juice to 500 ml whole milk and leaving it for ten minutes)

50g melted butter

3 large eggs, 2 of them separated

Vegetable oil or spray for the pan

3 ripe pears or apples sliced

Maple syrup – loads of it!

(You’ll need 3 clean bowls)


1. Sift the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar into a bowl.

2. Mix the buttermilk, melted butter and eggs together in a second bowl – keeping the two egg whites seperate.

3. Make a well in the centre of the flour bowl and gradually add the buttermilk mixture, whisking as you go along.

4. Beat the two eggs whites with a clean whisk in your third bowl until they form soft peaks. Add a scoop of the beaten egg whites to your pancake batter and gently mix in then add the rest of the egg whites and only stir until it is all mixed in then stop.

5. Heat a small amount of oil in a pan (or use butter) and use a ladle to pour your pancake batter into the pan (you are aiming for small round pancakes – my pan fit in three at a time). Once the batter is in the pan, place a few slices of pears or apples onto each pancake. Bubbles will appear on the sufrace and after a minute or so you can flip them over – they should be golden on the bottom.

6. Add a tiny bit more oil to the pan as you make each batch. Serve as you go along or layer the, up and keep them warm in a low oven.

7. Drizzle with maple syrup once at the table.    


As this was an America-inspired breakfast, I’m linking it up with Helen’s Breakfast Club #16 Stars and Stripes, this month hosted by Susan of  A Little Bit of Heaven on a Plate… 

A recipe to bookmark for next Sunday perhaps… How was your weekend? Any tasty treats or adventures to share?



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  1. Oh these look amazing!
    Just have to say, I cannot believe I didn’t recognize you at first today. Apologies and wish I had chatted with you for longer xx

    1. Thanks Laura! Oh don’t worry, it was all a bit busy at the beginning and the queue was huge so I was head down trying to get everybody in as quickly as possible! It was lovely to meet you just wish we could have talked for longer. x

  2. I love pears and never tried them in pancakes. Got a big jar full of buckwheat flour crying out to be used too!

    1. Hi Sarah, sounds like these could be made for breakfast today then?! Hope you enjoy them. Lovely to see you too on Friday and hear all about your exciting book 🙂

  3. I have been looking at this book too. Such a lovely selection of cold weather recipes, this is one of my faves. your versions look delicious!

    1. Thanks Nazima, it’s exactly the kind of book I need to cook from today, it’s freezing this morning. Lovely to see you on Friday – you looked amazing. x

  4. Delicious looking pancakes. I’ve not tried pancakes with buckwheat flour before. I love the addition of fruit. How exciting that you are going to meet with Diana Henry. I would love to hear what her favourite recipes are too and where does she get inspiration from?

    1. Consider your questions posed! I will ask her. I have so many things to ask her! Thank you for the comment, I’m so glad you like the pancakes too. The buckwheat is a nice alternative and it’s nice to know you can experiment with flour, gluten free or otherwise.

  5. Oh I love how you embedded the pears in the pancakes! I’ve only ever seen them grated in (so you can;t see the lovely pears anymore) , or separate from the pancakes. Thats a beautiful presentation! Great flavours too, perfect for this season!

    1. Thank you so much Shu Han, it was such a rushed breakfast and post but I’m glad you like it!

  6. I think the idea of putting the sliced pears into the batter as it hits the pan a genius idea!

    1. Thanks James, it’s a very Polish thing to do. Usually with apples. You can also just chop the fruit and mix it into the batter, but it doesn;t look as pretty 🙂

  7. Oh my, they really are something else, look so yummy, the pictures are just stunning too. Thanks for joining in.

    1. Thanks for hosting, Susan! x

  8. I have this book and have no idea, how I have overlooked the recipe. I discovered buckwheat pancakes a couple of years ago in Paris, and found myself liking them. Thanks for the recipe with the use of seasonal pears.

    1. Hi Shaheen, it’s quite near the front and next time I WILL be making the pecan and date butter! Lot’s more to explore in there too. Buckwheat has a very particular flavour, but hardly noticable once coated in maple syrup.

  9. Ooh, they look yummy! I love the way you’ve used sliced pear and buckwheat. Bacon and syrup is my favourite, but I suppose I could be persuaded to go for a healthier option…

    1. Hi Emma, thank you so much and for the comment 🙂 Hope you are well. I think you have to go for the full-on streaky bacon too, with crispy bits, don’t you? I think they were quite ‘healthy’ overall…!

  10. Those pancakes look like very much “my sort of thing”! I also enjoy buckwheat pancakes made into savoury dishes like the French galettes or Sarrasins. Actually, they would be good in the American way too- crispy bacon AND Maple surup.

    1. Thanks Mark, yes, the flavour of Buckwheat takes a bit of getting used to, but its lovely with loads of maple syrup! I love pancakes with bacon and syrup too. I’ve never made French galettes but have tasted them. Actually, I have some batter left…off to make some more!!

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