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The Humble Pancake.

There’s a few things I love, but am not really good at. One of them? Pancakes.

I like pancakes. I like them a lot. My gran always made them in her old, enameled pans, and they always turned out perfectly, not a single scrambled one. Me? Well. Mine had a tendency to stick to the bottom of the pan, getting all scrambled and ugly in the process – and driving me near crazy.

But I think now I’ve cracked the secret of baking pancakes… which is:

Turn the heat on high enough. (On our stove, that means 6 out of 9 in the setting. 5 is right out. Yes, really, the one works, the other… doesn’t. I have not tried 7, but it might result in too-dark undersides of the pancake.) Have a bit of fat in the pan, though it’s not necessary to have the whole pancake-thing swim in it. Make the batter rather liquid, and don’t pour too much at once. And then be patient for long enough.

The batter goes into the heated pan, and then I tilt the pan so there’s no heap in the middle, but the thing gets a more or less even thickness. And then the next bit of the secret is to wait long enough for the top to solidify slightly and for the bottom to become done and slightly crusty – then it will become unstuck all by itself. All that remains to do is gently unstick the edges all around, then flip it to give it a little bit of quality baking time on the other side.

I finally figured this out, and I’m really happy about it. Proper pancakes! No more impromptu pan cleaning while making food! No half-done scrambled thingies! (Well, they still were nice to eat, but not, you know, pancakes.) So… achievement unlocked. Now I can go to the next stage: find the perfect recipe…

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2 Responses to The Humble Pancake.

  1. Heather says:

    The pancake recipe I was taught is: “This much *shake shake shake* flour, thiiiiiiiiiis much milk [move hand down and up by 30cm while pouring] and one egg.”

    I’ve found that the biggest difference is made by the quality of the spatula. Even if the pancake is perfect a stubby spatula will mess it up.

  2. Harma says:

    Why a spatula? A good pancake is thrown in the air to flip. I melt some butter and add that to the batter. With the right pan one doesnvt have to grease it after the first pancake. Put a second pan on to bake some bacon, add some slices of apple and a dollop of maple sirop to caramelise and fill the pancake with that mix

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