Column and photo by Lindsay Kucera/The AS Review

Since I am not a morning person, and by that I mean that I am not a person in the morning, breakfast is something of a rarity in my world. Even if I happen to be awake and not inflicting my indiscriminate, sleep-deprived wrath upon hapless bystanders, breakfast is not a priority. And if it doesn’t include coffee, I’m not interested at all. But, when I do eat breakfast, I go all out. The “most important meal of the day” becomes an event. These particular pancakes were concocted because I had extra pumpkin purée from my holiday cooking extravaganza. The great thing about these pancakes is they can be savory or sweet. Without the vanilla and chocolate, they are scrumptious, but add the sweetness to the mix and we border dangerously on the decadent.

Breakfast= Omnom-o-rama!

Costs: $8.00
Makes: 10 to 14 pancakes

1 3/4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons sugar
1 cup of milk
1 egg
1/2 tablespoon butter
1 cup pumpkin purée
1 tablespoon pumpkin spice (cinnamon, clove, nutmeg)
1 teaspoon vanilla, optional
1/2 cup miniature chocolate chips, optional (not really)

Directions: In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking powder. In a large bowl, combine the sugar, milk, butter, egg and pumpkin. Add the pumpkin spice and mix well, adding more to taste. Slowly mix the dry ingredients in, folding the batter over to incorporate everything. The batter should be a liquid, soupy consistency. If desired, add in the vanilla and the chocolate chips and blend. In a pan or skillet, pour about one tablespoon of vegetable oil, and bring up to high heat. When the pan is hot, carefully pour between one-eighth and one quarter of a cup of the batter into the pan. Let the pancake cook on one side for about 45 seconds, or until bubbles begin to form in the batter and then flip with a spatula, repeating on the other side. Repeat with remaining batter.