Made with almond meal and whipped egg whites, these pancakes are unbelievably light and delicate and rich at the same time. They don't even need syrup. You can modify the ratio of almond meal to wheat flour. Another 1/4 cup of flour will make the pancakes easier to cook -- they will cohere better -- but they will commensurately become more like "regular" pancakes. I came up with this as a variation of my Daddy's Pancakes recipe. If you make it as I explain, it is quickly prepared with a minimum of dishwashing. You don't want to start off your day with a long, dirty project! —Eric Liftin
Preheat the griddle. I like a cast-iron griddle, but whatever you like. It should be sizzling hot. I preheat on high, then dial down to medium. Put butter in a Pyrex 2-cup (or larger) measuring cup and microwave until the butter melts, about 30 seconds. Meanwhile, combine dry ingredients with a whisk in a medium mixing bowl. For the purposes of this recipe, zest is not a dry ingredient.
Zest the lemon into the measuring cup with the butter. Note the butter "level" (should be around 1/8 cup), and pour 1 cup of milk into the measuring cup. Add the vanilla
Separate the eggs: Yolks go in the measuring cup, whites in a smallish stainless bowl. Whisk the wet ingredients, careful not to spill. Pour wet ingredients into the bowl and combine well.
Whip the egg whites until stiff, but not dry. Fold whites into the batter. Batter will be thinner than you are probably used to for pancakes.
Apply butter to the griddle, which should be hot enough to sizzle. Ladle the batter onto the griddle. The pancakes should cook quickly. The griddle should be hot enough to generate the lacy golden pattern (see photos) but not so hot to burn before they are set enough to flip.
If you're making a bunch, keep them warm in a 200º oven, setting them on a wire rack, not stacked, or they will get soggy. But really pancakes should be eaten within minutes of coming off the griddle!