Spike Your Pancakes With Irish Cream

Spike Your Pancakes With Irish Cream
Photo: gowithstock, Shutterstock

I have never investigated 23andMe (or any similar genetic test) because I’m not particularly interested in the results. I am white. I am from Mississippi. There is no good or noble fruit to be found hanging in that particular tree.

I do know that I am somewhat Irish. When I got married, I wore some Irish earrings my Irish great-great-grandmother wore in her Irish wedding in Ireland, before she moved to America. I’m also a bit Welsh, but we don’t have a day of Welsh excess and imbibing to celebrate in the United States, so some white people tend to exaggerate their connection to the Emerald Isle, just so they can feel something on St. Patrick’s Day.

That’s what I’m doing with these Irish Cream Pancakes — feigning enthusiasm over a day I have no emotional connection with in order to feel something. Luckily, the pancakes are good, and very easy to make: Get a box of pancake mix and replace the water or milk called in the instructions with the same volume of Irish cream. I used a grocery store brand that was not as alcoholic as true Bailey’s, but which retained an unmistakable hint of ethanol.

Irish cream pancakes are lightly sweet, vaguely boozy, and hard to stop eating. Though they come out nicely using store-bought Irish cream, they’d be even better with the homemade stuff, which is also easy enough to whip up in the comfort of your own kitchen. (If you want to go even sweeter/fancier, add some chocolate chips to the batter right before you flip the pancake.)

Once you have obtained or produced your cream of choice (I hear they even make almond milk-based versions now), mix your batter according to the box instructions, substituting all (or some) of the milk or water for Irish cream. Do not overmix — lumpy batter makes for fluffy pancakes — and fry in butter for best results.

If you’re worried about the sting of booze being a little too harsh first thing in the morning, experiment by replacing only half of the liquid in your recipe with Irish cream, then adjust as needed. Increasing the amount of Irish cream will also increase the sugar content, so set the heat a little lower than you usually would to prevent your pancakes from burning before the insides are fully cooked. Serve with maple butter, Irish cream-flavored whipped cream, or rum ham.

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