Cornmeal Pancakes with Sausage and Bacon Chili

I got together with my photographer buddy Dominic Perri for a fun shoot where the goal was to make foods that looked like one thing but on second glance you realized were something else. I have been trying to think of a savory topping for pancakes for a bit and decided this would be a great time to finally try it out. At first it was simply the idea of putting chili on pancakes, but as I started really diving into the idea, I kept making little tweaks that really made this dish awesome. I was inspired by sausage gravy for the chili so I added breakfast sausage, bacon, and even a little milk. I also added coffee and maple syrup so it was really a breakfast chili! My last minute idea was to use cornmeal in the pancakes since cornbread is such a great pair for chili.
I really wanted this to be a dramatic stack for the photos, but if you were to make this at home I would suggest only one or two pancakes per plate. Chili on first. Gotta have butter on a pancake stack. Jalapeno, sour cream, cheddar, and chives. This was SO GOOD. I re-made it for Georgina and I the next day because it was so damn good. The breakfast chili was super unique but still tasted like chili, and the cornmeal pancakes really brought the idea together.

Cornmeal Pancakes with Sausage and Bacon Chili

  • chili
  • 10 ounces Bacon chopped
  • 1 pound Breakfast Sausage removed from casing
  • 2 tablespoons Butter
  • 1 Onion diced
  • 5 Jalapenos diced
  • 3 cloves Garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon Chili Powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon Cumin
  • 2 28 ounce cans Crushed Tomato
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 2 cups Chicken Stock
  • 1 cup Coffee
  • 1/4 cup Maple Syrup
  • 2 teaspoons Oregano
  • pancakes
  • 2 cups Cornmeal
  • 1 1/2 cups Flour
  • 1/4 cup Sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Baking Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 2 1/2 cups Milk
  • 1 tablespoon Vinegar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1/2 stick Butter
  • toppings
  • Butter
  • Sour Cream
  • Cheddar Cheese
  • Chopped Chives
  • sliced jalapenos

Instructions

    Make the Chili
    1. Cook the bacon to brown, stirring often. Remove from pan keeping the fat in the pan. Cook the sausage breaking it apart and stirring, until browned and cooked through. Remove from pan. Remove excess fat from the pan so there is only a thin layer.
    2. Add the butter to the pan and cook the onion and jalapeno for about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, chili powder, and cumin and cook 2 minutes. Add the meats back to the pan and stir and cook for 3 minutes. Add the tomato, milk, stock, coffee, oregano, and some salt and stir well. Bring to a simmer and cook about 2 hours.
    Make the pancakes.
    1. Mix all the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet in another. Whisk the wet ingredients really well to combine. Add them to the dry ingredients and stir well. Add a little more liquid if needed.
    2. Griddle the pancakes, a few at a time or as many as you can fit in your pan or griddle, on both sides to lightly brown and cook through. As you finish, put them into the oven on low heat to stay warm while you finish the remaining pancakes.
    3. To serve, put the pancakes on a plate and top with a big scoop of chili and whichever of the other toppings you want.