how to: pancake with finesse
Once Christmas has passed, the next event in the calendar that gives an excuse to treat and indulge ourselves has to be Shrove Tuesday. Preceding Ash Wednesday, the first of the 40 day fasting period known as ‘Lent’, pancakes are traditionally a way to use up ingredients in the house considered to be rich before plainer food takes precedent until Easter. Although this isn’t a contributing factor to many people’s pancake day experience, there is one thing both reasonings have in common: treating yourself.
Pancakes are brilliant because they are so simple to make, and provide the perfect blank canvass for a plethora of different flavours, textures and colours. And the left over batter can be used for breakfast the next day, or a fantastic toad in the hole for dinner!
- 1 medium egg
- A cup of milk
- A cup of flour
- Pinch of salt
- Pinch of sugar
- Fillings of choice – sugar & lemon, fresh fruit, chocolate and banana; the possibilities are endless!
- In a medium sized bowl or jug, combine the flour and milk together using a whisk. Crack and beat in the egg, until a smooth batter is formed. It should be of a consistency where it is runny enough to slowly drip off the whisk when held up, but not thick enough that it does not ‘swirl’ in the container. If it is too runny, add more flour; too thick, add more milk.
- Place the batter in the fridge to reduce its temperature – roughly fifteen minutes to half an hour
- Over a medium heat, melt butter in a small frying pan. Ensure the pan is hot before adding any batter!
- Once the pan has heated and the butter is melted, add a small amount of batter to the middle of the pan. Turning the pan in a clockwise motion, spread the batter across its surface, until it has formed a ‘pancake’ shape. If necessary, add more batter so it reaches across the pan.
- Using a spatula, gently tease the outer rim of the pancake away from the edge of the pan to ensure it does not stick to the bottom!
- After about 2-4 minutes, cook the other side of the pancake. If you’re feeling brave, flip it: ensure the pancake isn’t stuck on the bottom of the pan, and using gentle back and forth motions, rock the pancake across the pan. Then, gently flip your wrist upwards – the pancake should flip over in the pan. Be careful! If you’d prefer to play it safe – wiggle the spatula underneath the pancake, lift it up slightly and twist it over
- Cook the other side for roughly 3 minutes, and then transfer to a plate
- Here, the pancake can be transformed with whatever delicious filling you desire. Traditionally, a sprinkle of lemon juice and sugar makes for a sweet treat. For a
healthy alternative, fresh fruit has a natural sweetness that makes the pancake satisfying without being too rich and sickly. Or, combine them both: chocolate and fresh fruit is everything that is good about a chocolate fountain wrapped up for your convenience! The possibilities are many – see where your inspiration takes you!