Scottish Oatcakes . $1.65

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Scottish? I don’t know if they are traditionally “Scottish” but they are made out of mostly oats, a traditional Scottish staple. Plus, the name sounds so wholesome. The outside of these little oatcakes is a beautiful, lacy, crispy contrast to the soft, moist interior. In my mind, these far exceed the taste of boring old pancakes, any day.

Scottish Oatcakes

Scottish Oatcakes

Super simple to make, the biggest thing with these is the overnight soak of the buttermilk and oats. I’ve even forgotten to make these and left them in the fridge for two or three days and they’re even better. (The final product may need to be slightly thinned when you do that, though, as the oats absorb so much of the moisture there’s not much left to allow the pancakes to spread out.)

My favorite way to make these is plain, with just a bit of cinnamon, but raisins or chopped dried fruit are great in these oatcakes, too. Dress them anyway you’d like – plain butter, a bit of jam or a syrup of your choice. They’re sturdy enough to grab one on the go, too, if your kids are like mine were – running out the door last minute for the school bus. These are a wonderful, too, for a casual weeknight dinner on a dreary day.

Cost for the pancakes, plain, is about $1.65 – butter and other toppings are additional, as is any fruit, etc.

Scottish Oatcakes, makes 18 pancakes about 5 inches in diameter.

  • 2 cups rolled oats (“Regular” not “Instant” work best here)
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 eggs, well beaten
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
  • 1/2 cup raisins or chopped dried fruit (optional)
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Soak oats in buttermilk overnight in the refrigerator. In a separate bowl, mix eggs, then add butter and raisins or dried fruit. Add to the oatmeal mixture and stir gently. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir until just moistened.

Spoon 1/3 cup onto an oiled griddle or pan. Cook until one side is well browned, then turn and finish cooking on the other side.

Let’s talk about how to save money/time on this recipe:

  • Use a coupon matching site! One of my favorites in my area is Pocket Your Dollars, but every store has a group of enthusiastic Coupon Matchers. Do not discount the savings! I check their site every week, even if I don’t “need” to go to the store and often find bargains I can’t pass up.
  • Follow my Strategies – You’ll see them all explained on the upper left tab of every page and how I apply them, below.
  • Don’t get discouraged if your prices don’t match mine! Keep shopping at the best prices and your fridge/freezer and pantry will be stocked with sales priced ingredients.
  • Read below for additional tips as well as throughout the recipe, for saving time and managing food.

Strategies Applied:

  • I often double recipes like this and bake all the pancakes, freezing the remainder layered flat on a cookie sheet lined with plastic wrap with plastic in between. Allow a slight space between them and they can be rolled up right on the plastic and put into Ziploc bags after they’re frozen for a quick breakfast as needed.
  • Oats:  I used Quaker, 44 ounces on sale for $1.99 (the Aldi’s brand is even less.)  2 cups is 6 1/2 ounces, so the price is 29 cents. I can find virtually no difference in Oats bought from the health food store and Quaker in side by side comparison. Aldis tend to be a bit more broken down. Oatmeal does, especially in the fall, have coupons from time to time that coincide with sales.
  • Buttermilk:  I rarely have buttermilk on hand unless I’m planning to bake – but when I buy it for a recipe like this, I’d plan on making other items requiring buttermilk. Buttermilk will store better in a jar than in the opened container, and does last for several weeks without going bad. While buttermilk may need to be shaken together again if it sits in the fridge, that doesn’t mean anything is wrong with it. Look for any discoloration or odd odor – trust your nose. I’m going by memory here, but I believe my 1/2 gallon was $2.65, and the one quart just slightly less. Cost for two cups (a pint) is 66 cents.
  • Flour: Buy around any holiday when it is on a great sale price, especially the winter Holidays. I freeze all flour products when I bring them into my home for three days to avoid any issues. The five-pound bags are often much less expensive than the larger bags and are on sale so often, that it isn’t necessary to buy the larger bags unless one does a lot of baking. Sometimes coupons are available for the brand names during the sales. Cost for half a cup, about 8 cents.
  • Dried Fruit:  I stock up during Christmas – and use coupons. If the bag is flimsy, repackage. Dried fruit keeps, literally, indefinitely, although you might find it becoming almost hard. Use the same trick as for brown sugar – keep it overnight, sealed in a bag with a piece of bread. Your pricing will vary according to what you use.
  • Baking Items: Baking Powder, Soda, Cinnamon can all be bought very inexpensively in the weeks prior to any Holiday in which baking is featured. Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter especially come to mind. Look for sales and coupons.

Put Your own Spin on It:

  • Once the basic recipe is down, the variations are almost endless. I don’t typically make these with fresh fruit, but why not?
  • The cinnamon is very subtle and could be increased, and these could be flavored, as well with other spices.
  • If you’re avoiding flour, a substitute could be made for the 1/2 cup.

Recipe made April 2014

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