Sweet of the Week: Maple Pancakes at Jam
Life's too short not to eat dessert for breakfast. At least that's my mantra practically every time I go out to breakfast or brunch, particularly at places as deviceful as Jam. Chef Jeff Mauro has a way of invigorating and modernizing classic breakfast staples and making them exponentially more decadent while maintaining a sense of dignity and class. That's a tall order to execute, but a perfect example would be his maple pancakes, which are speckled with enough custard and sugar to merit an intervention, but the dish still looks composed and mature due to Mauro's elegant hand. Flavors and textures are balanced, decadent yet not heinously out of control like some other dessert-y breakfast places around town. I won't name names, but one place that comes to mind rhymes with Pongo Boom. Dessert for breakfast has never been as classy as at Jam.
The maple pancakes at Jam are sort of a hybrid between cake and lemon meringue pie. For breakfast. Oof. The pancakes themselves are thick and dense, like a dark, molasses-y pound cake. They're heaped with a pudding-y, Meyer lemon custard, reminiscent of the innards of lemon meringue pie. It's sprinkled with a generous amount of dark Indian sugar and brûléed to develop a shiny, crackly crust. The cherry atop the pancake sundae is a few slivers of chewy citrus rind conserves, striking the perfect balance of tart and sweet.