Some images make me salivate and this is one of them. These fluffy pancakes with tangy with buttermilk, stuffed with meaty, smoky, salty bacon, and topped with a maple and brown sugar caramelized pineapple sauce are perfect to treat Dad for Father’s Day.
To streamline breakfast, prep the dry and wet ingredients in separate bowls the night before. The bacon can also be made the night before (save the bacon fat) as can the sauce, which can then be reheated. Get the kids involved. They can measure and whisk, while you or older kids can man the stove. Fresh pineapple is best, but I often cheat and buy it already cored and sliced to make this as easy as possible.
The one thing I will put my foot down about is the maple syrup. It has to be 100 percent pure maple syrup. Pancake syrups and breakfast syrups do not cross my threshold. Maple syrup is pricey, but the flavor and texture are sublime and make the dish.
Melt the butter in a large saucepan, stir in the brown sugar, and cook over medium heat for a few minutes until combined and sugar begins to melt. Add the pineapple and toss to coat. Continue to cook for several minutes over medium heat (might take up to 10 minutes), stirring often, until fruit begins to brown a little bit and the butter/sugar mixture thickens and creates a glaze. Add maple syrup, toss to coat, and cook a few minutes more until maple syrup incorporates into the glaze. Remove from heat until needed or cool, scrape into airtight container and refrigerate overnight, then reheat before using.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F and place a baking sheet in the oven to receive the pancakes as they are made.
Cook the bacon until medium crisp and drain on paper towels. It will be cooked again, so do not cook until completely crisp. Reserve bacon fat. Make the night before and refrigerate until needed or simply set aside.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk the buttermilk and eggs together, then whisk in melted butter. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry mixture and whisk gently until the dry ingredients are almost incorporated; do not overmix. Some lumps are okay. Let the batter rest while you heat an electric griddle to 375 degrees F or heat two pans (cast iron or nonstick are my pans of choice). Lightly grease your cooking surface with some bacon fat.
Pour 1/4 cup of the batter at a time onto the griddle for each pancake, spacing about 1-inch apart. (An ice cream scoop works wonders here). The batter will be thick and you might have to encourage them to spread a little bit; they should be about 3 ¾-inch to 4-inches across. Lay a cooked piece of bacon across each pancake. The bacon should overhang the edges. Cook until bubbles rise to the surface, about 1 to 2 minutes, and the edges look dry. The bottoms should be lightly browned. Flip then cook second side until nicely browned, about 1 minute more. Transfer the pancakes to the pre-warmed baking sheet in the oven while you cook remaining pancakes.
Make sure the sauce is warm. Warming the extra maple syrup is a nice touch as well. Serve pancakes hot topped with butter, caramelized pineapple sauce and pass the extra maple syrup.