Listen up, suckahs! We tend to get very serious about pancake day in this house.
No, let me rephrase. I tend to get very serious about pancake day in this house. I do not believe in restricting pancake consumption, no indeed. But a day when you can have pancakes for dinner just because history says so? I am on board.
Here then is your basic pancake low-down for this evening’s festivities.
All you need for these is a good Yorkshire pudding batter – thin pancakes are made from basically the same stuff. Mine’s here. And it’s glorious, because eggs, flour and milk all tend to be found in most people’s houses, which means you can always have either Yorkshire puddings or thin pancakes as a spur-of-the-moment snack (I DO THIS, DON’T JUDGE).
Use the best, newest frying pan you’ve got for these, because the flatter surface you can find, the easier they are to make. I use just a tiny bit of oil to begin with, and if your pan’s a bit older you’ll need to keep refreshing it as you cook. The hob should be on medium heat (4 out of 6 in our house). Once the pan has heated up for a few mins, pour a ladleful of batter into the centre, swizzle until it covers the whole of the pan bottom, and leave it. Don’t try to move or lift it until the edges are juuuuust starting to curl up. Flip if you’re feeling snazzy. Use a spatula if you’re not. Shouldn’t need more than three minutes a side, depending on your oven, but cook them until they’re as pale or brown as you prefer.
Truly, my friends, the thin pancake is a canvas for your wildest dreams. You can load it up as much as you like, then eat it rolled up or unfurled. Here’s the stuff we like the best.
- lemon juice and granulated sugar (for the purists)
- lime juice and granulated sugar (for the purists who want a wild time)
- melted milk chocolate and raspberries
- melted milk chocolate and chopped bananas
- whipped cream and strawberries (oh my)
- golden syrup and chopped bananas
- melted white chocolate and blueberries
- melted white chocolate and pineapple chunks (obscenely good, this one)
- an inch-thick spreading of Nutella, and nothing else.
Fat American-style pancakes
By which I mean the style of pancakes that are fat and come from the US, not pancakes specifically for fat Americans. Hope the hyphen’s in the right place.
I confess, six months ago we stumbled across an add-water mix from Costco, and have never looked back. But this recipe is also a good one. The main difference is the addition of baking powder (which makes them rise), sugar (which crepes don’t generally need), and a higher ratio of flour (to make the batter thick).
You can get away with a craggier pan for these, as they’re smaller and more robust. Tim likes to use butter rather than oil to grease the surface, and it gives them a slightly crusty, buttery patina that works brilliantly. Ladle a spoonful of thick mixture into the centre of the pan, and leave it until the top side is bubbling. They rise a little in the cooking, which is always exciting. These shouldn’t take more than a minute per side – again, depending on your oven.
I am a purist myself when it comes to these: maple syrup and butter in large quantities, and bacon if you can get it. Otherwise, baking fruit or chocolate chips into the batter is a nice alternative: thinly sliced bananas or blueberries are lovely. Drop the batter in first, then the fruit on top – and then jiggle the batter a bit so the fruit is mostly covered, otherwise it’ll burn when you flip it.
Happy eating, my lovelies! Stuff your good faces. We did.