Pancake Day is just around the corner: one of my favourite sweet-treat days of the year, as I love pancakes in all their forms. In the Christmas holidays I first sampled Dutch baby pancakes – fluffy, American battered cakes – at Earthy Foods, where they were served with a pistachio dukkah, honeyed Greek yoghurt and preserved oranges. They were absolutely delicious, and I vowed to recreate them at home. They’re surprisingly simple to make but look impressive: they start with a silky smooth batter that is rested then poured into a piping hot pan and baked. This is where the magic happens as the Dutch baby puffs up into a fluffy but crisp delight. I’ve included two topping options below, but serve with your favourite, go-to pancake topping.
3 large eggs
150ml whole milk
100g plain flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
A pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
¼ tsp flaky sea salt
55g unsalted butter
(serves 4 – 6 – I divided the recipe by 3 here!)
Whisk together the eggs, milk, flour, vanilla, nutmeg and salt in a large bowl and then let the batter rest for 45 minutes in the fridge.
Heat the oven to 220C/ 425F/ Gas 7. Put a skillet or pan suitable for oven use in the middle of the oven for 10 minutes to heat up. Drop in the butter and swirl it around to melt it.
Pour in the batter and return to the oven for 20-25 minutes until puffed at the edges and golden brown.
You can serve the dutch babies simply with the zest of a lemon, sprinkling of icing sugar and lemons cut into wedges…
… or I’ve included my recipe for Seville orange curd below. You will need:
100ml Seville orange juice (ie from about 1-2 oranges), strained
Zest of 1/2 an unwaxed navel orange (optional)
60g unsalted butter
200g granulated sugar
1 whole egg plus 1 yolk, well beaten.
(This makes a good bowlful but the leftovers are lovely on porridge, in a Victoria sandwich cake, on toast…)
Put the juice, zest, butter and sugar in a heatproof bowl over a pan of gently simmering water.
As soon as the butter has melted and the mixture is warm and glossy looking, pour in the beaten eggs and whisk.
Stir over a gentle heat until the curd is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 12-15 minutes (a sugar thermometer should read 82-84C). It will thicken as it cools. Pour immediately into warm, sterilised jars. Use within three or four weeks, and keep in the fridge once opened.
I served my second attempt at Dutch babies with a couple of spoonfuls of Seville orange curd and caramelised clementine.
I made the clementine garnish simply by frying a clementine, cut-side down, on a hot, ungreased pan. It adds a lovely caramelised flavour and the freshness of the orange cuts through the curd.
What are you baking this weekend? Are you looking forward to Pancake Day?
Dutch baby recipe via Claire Ptak (of The Violet Bakery); Seville orange curd recipe via Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.