Being a California girl all my life I'd never been exposed to the southern "Johnny" cakes until coming across a recipe for them about a year ago. I loved the cornmeal flavor and began experimenting with it in my standard pancake recipe, falling in love with the citrusy combination. If you keep the stone-ground variety on hand, be sure to grind it up as finely as possible (I use my coffee grinder) to avoid too course a texture in the cakes. I find the honey as a dressing (vs. syrup) is a fun and delicious change from the norm.
The juice in the batter will begin to react with the baking powder pretty quickly and builds up a lot of air. The last cakes you make will taste as delicious as the first, but you may have to smooth the batter onto the griddle for even rounds.
I use White Whole Wheat Flour here for lighter texture, but they're great with regular Whole Wheat as well. —Ghazzzit
Preheat a cast iron griddle on the stovetop over med-low heat.
In a medium bowl combine the orange juice, honey, egg and lemon zest. Mix with a wire whisk to thoroughly combine.
Mix together the flour, cornmeal, salt and baking powder in a separate small bowl, then add the dry to the wet ingredients, stirring together until incorporated but not over-mixed.
Ladle the batter into rounds on the hot griddle in 1/4 cup-fulls. Allow the pancakes to cook until lightly bubbling on the top side and just starting to dry on the lower half edges (about 2-3 minutes). With a wide spatula, gently flip the pancake and allow to cook another 1-2 minutes until golden brown on both sides. Remove to a plate and repeat with remaining batter!
For the drizzle: add the honey and butter to a separate small skillet. Heat through over med-low heat until the butter is melted. Serve over the pancakes and enjoy!