I have a problem. It’s fall in New England and pumpkins are everywhere. They pop up on the side of the road, in huge bins at the store. In coffee. In cake. In cookies. In whoopee pies. I even saw pumpkin spice BACON! PUMPKIN SPICE BACON!!! I’m finding I’ve got an obsession with pumpkin – specifically Japanese Pumpkin. I want to eat it all the time. I want to make things with it until the house smells wonderfully of cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg. Do I need a support group for this? What can I do?
Kabocha Loco in New England
Dear Kabocha Loco,
It sounds like you have fall fever. This is a common and completely normal reaction. I recommend making a much pumpkin yummies as possible before the season ends. Japanese pumpkin is fantastic and healthy. Can I recommend Pumpkin Pancakes? Oh, and make sure you enjoy the foliage before all the leaves fall!
She obviously doesn’t know how I feel about foliage season, lol. I will say it is kinda pretty out this morning though.
Yeh. So I get up this morning, just sort of fitzing around in the house, trying to get enough coffee in me so that I can face the drive and challenges of going back out to get shit I didn’t get shopping the other day, and chatting with The Lady when she subtly drops:
“You don’t make me breakfast on Sundays any more.”
Now, I’m not always the brightest candle in the row, but I can take a hint. Hmmm. What can I do to redeem myself? I spent most of yesterday morning and early afternoon processing pounds and pounds of kabocha.
Fortunately, I held back a little in the fridge instead of freezing all of it.
Pumpkin scrambled eggs?
Nah (but that might just be something I’m going to try)
Pumpkin hash browns?
Nope. That’s for spaghetti squash.
Yup, pumpkin (kabocha) pancakes just might do the trick. Since we’re keto, maple syrup is out of the question. What can I do about that? Pancakes NEED SOMETHING ON THEM!! A little Hobbit thinking here, a little testing there, and I came up with a pretty freaking awesome substitution. Sugar-free, zero carb pancake syrup. Oh, and let’s not forget…
Nothing like the smell of bacon waiffing out of the oven. I prefer to do mine in the oven and not stovetop, cooks perfectly every time, no splatters, no little burns all over my hobbit arms, and no grease spots on my shirt:). If you haven’t done in the oven before, I strongly recommend giving it a shot.
Lay out the bacon on parchment or silicon mat on a baking sheet (with edges!).
Put in a cold oven, then turn on the heat to 425. Let it bake to desired crispness! I also save my bacon fat for cooking. Toss it in glass jar in the fridge, it will keep for months.
To make the syrup, it’s dead simple.
- 2 tbsp stevia
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 tsp maple extract
- 1/4 tsp xantham gum
Heat the water in the microwave for about 30 seconds, then stir in stevia until all dissolved. add extract and taste, adjust as needed. Sprinkle xantham gum over the top while whisking. Once all combined, nuke for another 30 seconds, whisk again then set in fridge while making the pancakes.
The Pancakes (makes 6 4″ pancakes):
- 1 scoop vanilla protein powder (I used Dymatize Elite Whey Isolate)
- 1 tbsp coconut flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 c almond\coconut milk (or 1/8 cup cream and 1/8 cup water)
- 2 large egg
- 1 tsp pumpkin spice (or 1/4 tsp ginger +1/4 tsp nutmeg + 1/2 tsp cinnamon)
- 1/4 cup cooked kabocha squash (or pumpkin puree)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat a skillet on the stove to medium heat. It’s ready when a drop of water dances on the surface of the pan before evaporating. If it just sizzles, turn the heat up a little bit more and try again.
Mix all the dry together in one bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs until well combined, then whisk in the milk, extract, and kabocha until well blended. Pour into the dry, then whisk again until all the lumps are gone. Grease your pan with your choice of oil and let it warm up for few seconds and get thin. Scoop the batter into the pan 1/4 cup at a time. My pan is small so I only do one at a time. I recommend trying one first to make sure the temp of the pan is correct. IF the edges of the batter immediately get jagged like below, turn the heat down just a little, let it adjust, and try again.
When you see bubbles form all around the batter like above, it’s time to flip. Flip the pancake over gently, it should start to rise in seconds.
Watch the edges of the side facing down. When a nice golden brown, flip it onto a plate and start with the next one.
Top with butter and the homemade sugar-free syrup, toss bacon on the plate, and watch the family (or the Lady in my case) love you over and over again!
Nutritional information (per serving of 3 pancakes) : Calories: 202, Fat: 12, Protein: 19, Carbs: 5, Fiber: 2, Net carbs: 3
Hey, if you read this and like it, feel free to give me some feedback in the comments. I’d love to hear from everyone on what they think of my ‘creations.’ If you have questions, ask! If you hate them, tell me :). If you do your own tweaks, let me know, I love to learn new things!! Also, follow me on Pinterest so you can easily save these to your boards! The link to my account is at the bottom of the page. Thanks!