Buongiorno you wonderful people! I hope you are all fine and dandy and well recovered from the holidays. Personally I could’ve done with another week of rest and relaxation. And wine. And Cadbury selection boxes (other selection boxes are available).
I’m sure now February has arrived in all its’ glory, most of you must already be fretting over what to get your other half for Valentine’s Day. But come on people lets not get too hasty, There is a far more important occasion just around the corner. Well, probably only important to those of you who don’t have someone to get all gushy with on the 14th… And I’m sure from the title, you know that this fabulous occasion I speak of is none other than good old Pancake Day.
Disclaimer: if you don’t like pancakes and/or have diabetes you should probably cook these recipes for someone else. Copious amounts of sugar were involved in the making of these Pancakes. Sorry, not sorry.
I decided to do a bit of a twist on regular old lemon sugar crepes that most people knock up in this particularly epic day. By all means you can use the basic batter recipes to create whatever flavours you want, but the fillings I’ve put together here are such absolute winners you’ll be eating pancakes for days. Or weeks in my case because I’ve been making them since Christmas.
Firstly I’m going to share a beautiful sweet American pancake recipe. These little pillows of fluffiness are so delicate you can pair them with any classic toppings like Nutella and banana, maple syrup or simply just a handful of berries and they will taste absolutely divine.
- 120g flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- Pinch of sea salt, crushed
- 140ml milk
- 3 eggs
- Zest of 1 lemon (optional)
- Start by sifting the flour and baking powder into a large bowl, and separating the eggs; putting the yolks in with the flour and the whites in another bowl with the salt.
- Mix the yolks and flour with a whisk until it is lump free. Whisk up your egg whites until they reach stiff peaks, then fold the whites into the batter very gently, taking care to keep all the air in the mix. Now that is your basic batter done, dusted and ready to go.
- At this point feel free to sweeten it with a tablespoon of icing sugar or add any other bits and pieces you want actually in the pancakes. I went for lemon zest and a handful of grated white chocolate. But that’s just personal preference.
- Now heat a large non stick frying pan on a medium heat for a minute or two, then rub a bit of butter over the base to give the pancakes extra flavour and a golden colour. Pour a small amount of batter into the pan, it should be thicker than crepe batter and just be slightly bigger than a jam jar lid. Cook for a few minutes on each side, flipping in between (be brave and go for the toss, it’s much more fun than using a spatula and being a bore)
- Once you’ve stacked up your desired amount of pancakes (I got 11 out of my mix) you can use whatever filling you like. I decided to drizzle mine with a little maple syrup, chop up some more white chocolate and pecan nuts and sprinkle those on top and inbetween each pancake on the stack. And heavens was it GOOD.
Righteo, now over to the savoury pancakes. I had these for dinner tonight. I feel like I’ve eaten like a princess. I need to cook myself more meals like this. Plus thanks to None other than Jamie Oliver I have learned a ridiculously easy way to poach eggs. So here’s my twist on a classic eggs florentine using beautiful savoury crepes. Trust me when I say you will want some of this in your life.
For the crepes
- 140ml milk
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 60g flour
- 1 egg
For the filling
- 2 handfuls of washed spinach
- 2 large dollops of Ricotta
- 2 eggs
- Hollandaise sauce (totally optional, I left it out of mine)
- You need to start by getting prepped. With a recipe like this you need to get everything sorted before you start cooking. Your spinach needs to be wilted so either do it on the hob or steam it, there should be instructions on the packet but about 3 minutes in a steamer should do it. But firstly just put it in the pot all ready to switch on.
- Next grab two mugs, and cling film each one. Use a small amount of oil to grease them slightly then crack each egg into the mugs.gather up the corners of the cling film and tie in a knot so the egg can’t escape. Fill a saucepan with water and start heating it up so it’s ALMOST boiling.
- Grab a flat frying pan and get that on the hob ready but don’t turn any heat on it just yet.
- Make the batter by sifting the flour, salt and pepper into a bowl, follow by the egg and milk. Now whisk it up until it’s completely smooth, resembling the consistency of double cream.
- Okay now you can start heating up your frying pan on a medium heat and wilting your spinach. And don’t forget you now put your eggs in the ALMOST boiling water you prepared a moment ago. And time about 4 minutes for those.
- Grease your frying pan with butter and pour a small amount of batter in, just enough to cover the base of the pan. Now cook for a couple of minutes on either side, tossing in between (again, don’t use a spatula because that’s boring). I’ve done 2 pancakes per person.
- If you’ve followed my lead everything should be ready at the same time so plate it up, folding the wilted spinach and ricotta in between each one. Then gently cut the cling film off of your beautifully poached eggs and out those on top. Add a bit more salt and pepper on top and just stand back and marvel at your skilled pancakery. But not for too long, get it while it’s hot.
And if you fancy a crepe (no jokes please), but you want it sweet, just take the pepper out and add a spoonful of icing sugar and top with any sweet topping you fancy.
I hope you gauge yourself into next week on these beautiful recipes. I had lots of fun making them, and I hope you and your family do too!
Lots of love, S x