By now you know that I love a good breakfast. Not during the week, those mornings I barely manage to dress and grab a quick coffee before leaving the house, but at weekends I love taking my time over a really nice brunch. What to make is often the issue. I love a good hearty breakfast of eggs with some sort of tomatoes and chilli, like my Huevos Rancheros. Himself, however, loves a sweet breakfast.
If it’s not French Toast then it’s usually pancakes. Big thick fluffy pancakes with a load of fruit and some yoghurt or mascarpone cream on them. Every so often I get organised and go with this Dutch Baby Pancake. If you’ve never heard of them you are in for a treat. It is one big pancake baked in a skillet in a hot oven that puffs up beautifully and collapses when you take it out of the oven. A bit like a Yorkshire Pudding. The bottom is all fluffy and light and the sides become crispy. It is also easier than making individual pancakes as you just put it in the oven and leave it alone for about 20 minutes.
I researched a lot of recipes before settling on this. Chrissy Tiegen has one in Cravings that was just a little eggy and sweet for my liking. Nigella has one in Simply Nigella where she uses nutmeg which is a nice addition too. I have tried making them as per other recipes with baking powder but the eggs are enough of a raising agent so it is not necessary. As you can see, one side of this pancake puffed up so much that when it collapsed back down it kind of missed the pan! Himself thought I shouldn’t post this pic but it tasted perfect so what’s wrong with a rustic looking pancake?!
Don’t limit them to breakfasts either, the New York Times listed them under their top 25 desserts in a newsletter last weekend.
Useful tips & links:
- I like to make the batter the night before and let it rest in the fridge. In the morning I take it out to come up to room temperature while the oven heats. It is not strictly necessary and you can make it and bake immediately if you like. Just make sure your ingredients are at room temperature when you start,
- The best way to make these is in an oven proof skillet or frying pan but if you don’t have one a pie dish will work fine.
- I love apples with pancakes and have seen several recipes where the apples are caramelised in the pan first and then the batter is poured over to go in the oven. To me that is more like a clafoutis so I prefer to prepare the fruit separately.
- I don’t put any sugar in the batter as I like to leave the sweetness to the toppings but if you wish add a tablespoon of caster sugar when making the batter.
- For more pancake ideas have a look at my recipes here or at Michelle’s beautiful Cinnamon Dutch Baby Pancake on The Last Food Blog.
Dutch Baby Pancake
- 3 medium eggs
- 150ml of full fat milk
- 100g of plain flour
- ½ a teaspoon of vanilla extract
- A pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon of lemon zest from an unwaxed lemon
- 30g of butter
- Icing sugar and lemon juice
- Fresh berries and mascarpone cream
- Fruit compote and yoghurt
- Caramelised apples and apple syrup with creme fraiche
- If you have a food processor or blender put in the eggs, milk, flour, vanilla, lemon zest and salt and whizz it all together until you have a smooth batter.
- You can whisk it all together in a bowl if you don’t have a blender or processor. Pour the flour and salt into a bowl first, whisk the wet ingredients and zest together in another bowl. Make a well in the middle of the flour and pour in the wet mix. Gradually whisk the flour in from the sides until you have a smooth batter.
- Cover with clingfilm and let it rest in the fridge until you are ready to use it, preferably overnight.
- When you are ready to make the pancake, take the batter out of the fridge and preheat the oven to 220c/200c fan/gas mark 7. Put a 10″ skillet or suitable dish in the oven to heat.
- Give the batter a little whisk again.
- When the oven is heated, carefully using a thick oven mitt, take the hot pan out of the oven and melt the butter in the skillet, swirling it so that the sides are totally coated. Pour any excess butter into the batter and whisk through.
- Quickly pour the batter into the hot pan and put it in the oven. Allow the Dutch Baby Pancake to bake until it is puffed up and golden brown, which can take anything between 15-20 minutes.
- Use the time the pancake is baking to prepare your toppings.
- Carefully take the pancake out of the oven and using a spatula slide it onto a serving plate. Dust immediately with a sprinkling of icing sugar.