Breakfast… the most important meal of the day… and it seems the most mundane too! Fair enough when you’re rushing off to work a bowl of cereal or a couple of slices of toast will just have to do but why neglect breakfast at the weekends and holidays? Lately I’ve been making a special effort to mixed it up a bit at breakfast and not always going for a savoury option… you have all day to burn the calories off after all!
Having also recently rediscovered lemon curd and receiving a lovely jar of homemade curd from a friend (made from lemons from their family holiday home in Minorca) I was keen to do something other than just smear it on toast or a cake. I thought about just making some traditional flat pancakes but then was reminded of these beauts!
A Dutch Baby, also known as a German pancake, Dutch oven pancake, bismarck or even a Dutch puff is traditionally served sweet at breakfast. You can pretty much top these with anything and I think they make a great hands on breakfast for kids, letting them choose their toppings and loading up! You can even make a savoury version and serve with savoury toppings or even later in the day as a lunch or dinner.
The trick to an extra fluffy and puffy pancake ( in my experience) is a really hot pan (preferably a skillet, but definitely one that can go in the oven) a slightly thicker batter and a spot of baking powder – this way your puff won’t lose its puff when you take it out of the oven.
Ingredients (Serves 2)
3 free range eggs (room temperature)
50-70 ml of milk
70g of plain flour – Gluten free will work fine you’ll just need to add a little extra gluten free baking power
1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
Pinch of salt
Tablespoon of caster sugar (or honey if you’re being a little health conscious)
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract ( not flavouring it’s not as nice!)
2 tablespoons of unsalted butter for cooking
Your choice of toppings
1.Batter – Whisk the eggs and most of the milk together in a 1/2 litre jug. Add the sugar, vanilla, salt and whisk in the flour and baking powder to make a smooth batter, add extra milk as required to get what looks like a thicker pancake batter (but not gloopey- you still need it runny) Leave to stand while you heat the pan.
2. Pan- heat the oven on gas mark 6 (around 220 degrees) with your pan or pans inside. I’d give it a good 15 mins especially if using a skillet pan. You can use one large pan or two small ones for individual pancakes.
3. Pour – Carefully remove the pan from the oven, pop the butter in the pan, let it melt (if your butter isn’t sizzling the pan is not hot enough) swirl round the pan for an even coating, now pour the batter into the pan. Place it back in the oven
4. Bake – Bake for approximately 15 minutes then a further 5 mins on an lower heat to ensure its cooked through. It should be lovely and crisp on top with a spongy fluffy base
5. Serve – with your toppings of choice