Tuesday, 20 February 2007

You say "I ordered you a pancake"

Pancake day!

I'm a little too far away to get over to Brick Lane for the Great Spitalfields Pancake Race but I'll be celebrating later by cooking lots of pancakes for lots of friends.

And I've finally learned my lesson - it doesnt matter how many fancy toppings you offer, the average bear wants lemon and sugar at least half the time - so I've cut the menu to two kinds of sugar (dark brown for flavour, granulated for texture), lemon juice, lime juice, chocolate spread, maple syrup, and cooked apple and blackberry.

While foraging for supplies at the supermarket last night, though, I was momentarily heartened that, amongst all the mixes and packets, they'd actualy put out flour on the 'don't forget pancake day' display. And then my hopes were crushed, because it was self raising flour. The mixes and packets frustrate me, as pancakes are ridiculously simple (and cheap). But self raising flour is just wrong.

For ten or twelve pancakes you need

4oz / 110g plain flour.
2 large eggs.
10fl oz / 275ml semi skimmed milk. (Delia Smith, original source of this recipie, faffs about with whole milk and water, but really - life's too short!)
butter or oil for cooking. (Delia says butter, I use oil, which gets hotter without burning, but in any case she's right about the amount - you only need the slightest sugestion of either - the pan needs to be greased, but the pancakes must not fry in fat.)

Break eggs into flour, beat, and then gradually add the milk, whisking all along.

Just accept that your first pancake will probably be a mess, and make sure the pan's hotter and you use less batter for the second, and then - away you go!

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