I can still remember writing last year’s pancake recipe. Seems like yesterday. Making pancakes is one of my weekend highlights; in my books it’s not right to leave them until Shrove Tuesday. And what a beautiful thing it is when I find time to make them during the week. A rare occurrence I admit, but it happens.
Pancakes used to be J’s thing, but now they’re totally mine and I love them. I usually make the simplest ones, with blueberries. No faff, especially because I know the kitchen will explode by the end of the morning. With me, the simpler the recipe, the messier the workspace. During these moments I don’t really care though. This little treat makes it all worthwhile and cleaning the kitchen is a small price to pay anyways. And for goodness sake, don’t run with them. Just eat them! Serves 2 very hungry people.
**Before we start: instead of buttermilk, you can use the same quantity of milk and leave it at that. You can also add about 1 teaspoon of lemon juice to the milk and let it sit for around 15-30 minutes.**
For the pancake batter:
- 90g plain flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 egg whites
- 150ml/roughly ¼ UK pint buttermilk**
- 20g butter, melted
- 2 x 15ml tablespoons amaretto
For the macerated strawberries:
- 400g strawberries
- zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon soft light brown sugar
- small pinch of freshly ground black pepper (Trust me on this one!)
Start by preparing the strawberries. Hull them and cut into halves or quarters. Tip them in a bowl and add the lemon, lemon zest and sugars. Give everything a mix and set aside. Add a small pinch of fresh pepper and mix again before serving.
If you don’t have buttermilk start off by preparing the milk as suggested above. If you’re using only milk then read on.
Measure the flour, baking powder and sugar, and mix them in a bowl.
To get the most fluffy pancakes possible, separate the eggs and use some muscle power to beat the whites into soft peaks. I don’t bother to use electric beaters for such a small amount.
Mix the milk/buttermilk with the egg yolks, melted butter and amaretto. Pour these into the dry ingredients but try not to mix the batter too much.
Fold the soft beaten egg whites into the mixture and use a ladle to pour the pancake batter on a preheated non-stick pan.
Cook on one side until you see bubbles forming throughout the surface and the edges have solidified. Then turn the pancake over on the other side. Repeat until you have used all your batter.
Serve alone with some golden syrup, maple syrup or honey, and don’t forget the macerated strawberries. I know that it’s not strawberry season yet, but these go so well with the pancakes. It hooks me in everytime. My favourite.
(The macerated strawberry recipe is adapted from James Ramsden’s Small Adventures in Cooking, Quadrille, 2011.)