Though it was my third time in the reserve, I had not been aware of the amazing research center near the base of the falls. Our first visit was a treat on many levels. After a wide-ranging discussion of the interactions among climate change, coffee and cloud forests, Alan Bolt and his staff provided us with a wonderful dinner, with many ingredients drawn from the surrounding forest.
Similarly, the next morning, while most of my students climbed to the waterfall (to which Pam and I had climbed last year), I chatted with Alan while he prepared an equally amazing breakfast. This morning was my first attempt to re-create it, combining his verbal instructions with proportions I use in my standard pancake recipe.
Dry Ingredients: In a large bowl, whisk together
1-1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda (Alan did not mention these to me, but they certainly did not hurt)
a lot of cinnamon (I dusted several times from a shaker, but will try to grind from bark next time. I do not think it is possible to use too much. Alan ground his directly from bark harvested immediately outside his kitchen.)
|Alan (near center) in his cloud-forest kitchen, with one of his |
staff cooks (right) and two of my students (left).
2 eggs, beaten
1-1/2 cups orange juice (juice of two oranges plus store-bought; Alan's was all fresh)
zest of two oranges
2 tablespoons blood orange olive oil from E.N. Olivier in Baltimore
I heated our indispensable cast-iron griddle and used butter to cook the pancakes. They cooked up quickly and crispy. All three of us enjoyed them, topped with butter and a bit of honey. Next year I hope to get to Alan's kitchen early enough to study his proportions and technique in more detail.