I LOVE pancakes of all shapes and sizes. I vividly recall the excitement of coming home from school to find my Mum making a batch. The special treat was always the teeny tiny final pancake made with the very last dribble of batter. Bannocks, Scotch Pancakes, Crepes, Blinis, American Pancakes, Drop Scones. Lots of different names and variations in taste, texture and proportions, way too good to save just for Shrove Tuesday.
My basic pancake recipe is my Grandmothers (she of the famous Grandma Monearn's Shortbread) hence the imperial measurements. I've #SpreadTheMoose on them in the photo above. Alas Moose Maple Butter is not generally available yet but will be launching soon. Keep an eye on their Facebook Page for developments. I can confirm that it is as awesome as you would imagine it to be. The smell and taste is irresistible.
GRANDMA MONEARN'S PANCAKES
GRANDMA MONEARN'S PANCAKES
4oz Plain Flour
1 Tbsp Sugar
1 tsp Cream of Tartar
1/2 tsp Bicarb of Soda
Pinch of salt
1 beaten egg
Sieve together all the dry ingredients and make a well. Add beaten egg and mix. Gradually add milk whisking well until you reach a dropping consistency.
Preheat a buttered griddle or frying pan on the hob.
Spoon on the batter to the desired size.
Once the pancake starts to bubble turn over with a palette knife to cook the other side.
Put in between a folded tea towel on a cooling rack to keep warm.
Eat and enjoy!
The basic recipe above can be adapted to make the awesomeness that is Bacon IN Pancakes. These proved a huge hit when I blogged about them earlier this year as part of breakfast week. Much discussion ensued about what they could be named. Suggestions included: Bacakes, Pancon, Pigs in Pancakes, Pigs in Blancakes, Pigcakes, Hamcakes, Smoky Pancakes, Bacon Slippers and Oinkcakes. Another variation on the basic recipe is Pancake Pops. For these simply place a lolly stick on the pancake as it cooks. I'm now pondering the concept of combining both. Pigs in Pancake Pops?!
A new community led food interest group has recently been set up in Aberdeen. The Mixing Bowl was launched in June 2014 but due to date clashes I only managed to get along for the first time last month. Part of the evening was a demonstration of Russian Blinis from Olga Yudina. I fully expected these to be the small buckwheat yeasted versions found in the chilled section at supermarkets for canapes. How wrong was I? They were much more crepe like in shape and size. The real trick seemed to be spreading each one with butter once they were cooked, this enhanced the flavour and stopped them sticking together when stacked. Olga's recipe is available here. I tried my hand at cooking them on the night but definitely want to give them a try at home.They tasted amazing served with berries, jam, mint and creme fraiche. Much like our Shrove Tuesday they are traditionally made for Maslenitsa which is a Russian Festival preceding Lent. It is a celebration of the end of the winter chills and the start of Spring, of warmth, of hope, of growth.
Given the choice I would tend to opt for savoury over sweet when it comes to crepes. Olga suggested mince and onion topped with creme fraiche, stir fried wild mushrooms, cheese, ham, smoked salmon and traditionally red caviar. I've got a delicious recipe courtesy of Marks & Spenser to share with you which would made a fantastic main meal on pancake day. I wouldn't have thought of using Camembert in a crepe but it worked really well. Just make sure you leave enough room for some sweet pancakes for desert.
Crepes with Ham, Baked Leeks and Tallegio
Ready in 45 minutes, Serves 4
Reproduced with permission of Marks & Spencer
For the crêpes:
125g plain flour
1 large egg
50g butter, melted and cooled
For the filling:
16 baby leeks, trimmed and washed
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp thyme leaves, chopped
8 slices Wiltshire ham
250g Taleggio or Camembert, cut into 8 pieces
4 tbsp fresh pesto
1 Put the flour and a pinch of salt in a bowl and make a well in the centre. Break the egg into the well and whisk, gradually adding the milk as you do so. The batter should be smooth and about the thickness of double cream. Set aside for 20 minutes.
2 Heat the oven to 190°C/170°C fan/gas 5. Put the leeks in a roasting tin. Scatter over the garlic, oil and thyme. Add a splash of water and cover with foil. Roast for 20-25 minutes, until tender.
3 Stir half the melted butter into the crêpe batter. Heat a non-stick 22cm diameter frying pan, and add a little of the remaining melted butter. Pour in a ladleful of the batter and swirl around to coat the base of the pan. Cook for 1-2 minutes, until golden, then flip the crêpe over and cook for another minute. Transfer to a plate and keep warm. Repeat with the remaining batter to make 8 crêpes.
4 Place a slice of ham, a piece of cheese and 2 leeks on each crêpe, then roll up to enclose. Transfer to a baking sheet and place in the oven for 5 minutes to warm through. Drizzle over the pesto before serving.
665 calories, 38.8g fat (16.8g saturated), 43.8g carbohydrates, 10.7g sugar, 11.5g fibre, 37.8g protein, 2.48g salt
If more proof is required that pancakes are for life, not just for Shrove Tuesday, surely it comes from my Reindeer Pancakes?! Now to get to work on a birthday pancake creation as this year Pancake Day coincides with Foodie Loon's Birthday. It's going to have to be an enormous pancake to fit all those candles on.