Hummingbird Pancakes

By Maria “Majo” Acosta Robayo ’20

Growing up with a Chinese Jamaican family of 8, cinnamon apple pancakes were a Saturday morning staple. I used to gather around the older boys as they chopped apples into thin wedges and poured cinnamon sugar swirls on buttermilk batter. This typical breakfast delicacy has been a family tradition for years so I was surprised to hear earlier this month that a new pancake recipe was being introduced: Jamaican Hummingbird Pancakes. Here is the recipe, just as my family makes them. Enjoy!


Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 1/4 cup crushed pineapple
  • 1 mashed banana
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Vegetable oil or butter, for frying
  • Banana, pecans and maple syrup for topping (optional)


  1. Heat a large skillet or griddle on medium heat
  2. In a medium bowl, combine pineapple, banana, eggs and milk, whisking until combined. In a separate bowl, sift flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt together.
  3. Incorporate dry ingredients into wet, stirring only until combined.
  4. Once your griddle is hot, liberally grease with oil/butter. Pour 1/4 cup batter per pancake onto surface. Cook on one side until holes form around edges (about two minutes) then flip and cook on other side for additional 1-2 minutes. Don’t let the pan get too hot — you want a nice even heat.
  5. Serve with banana slices, pecans and a healthy drizzle of maple syrup!


Annenberg Cook-Off

by Audrey Thorne ’19

The basic structure
Five teams, three judges, one winner. The teams were given from 4:30 pm until 6 pm to cook and plate their dishes. Each team must incorporate apples into their dish.

The teams
Al Dente Al Fresco, Working Title, Shakers and Bakers, Ratatouille, and Fernando the Destroyer.


The judges


The winning dish
Working Title won for their Chicken Cordon Bleu in a honey mustard glaze, with a provolone melt and a side of maple whipped sweet potatoes with sage butter and a Fall salad.


Each team received $18 in plastic Farmer’s Market currency to buy fresh ingredients from the fair. All spending in the market was rounded up to the dollar and had to occur before 4:30. In addition to produce bought at the fair, the teams had access to Annenberg’s salad bar, raw eggs, milk, and the secret ingredient: apples.

image8 image9 image10 Crunch time
“I had class from 3-5pm, so I had to buy my ingredients in advance and start cooking just over a half hour late. My group, Ratatouille, purchased homemade rigatoni for $6.50, a fresh sweet potato for $2, and seasoned almonds for $3.”

What did it feel like cooking in front of a crowd?
“Exciting. I ran in just past 5 pm to see a full production: five tables tended to by guys and girls in white aprons and hats, scurrying about, chopping and simmering. Others strolled from table to table cooing and inquiring. Friends came by taking photos. My teammates plated the pasta and uncooked apples, followed by the seared the chopped apples and sweet potatoes. To our right one team seared scallops and whipped sweet potatoes. To our left the girls cooked cranberry sauce and assembled three swans out of apple slices, one on each judge’s plate. Each team’s dish looked so different, not just in how it was cooked but also how it was presented, despite the similarities in ingredients.”