This is what I know as a pannekoeken, or a Dutch Baby.
From just pantry staples (eggs, milk, flour, salt and butter) and a couple of special techniques, it is possible to create an exciting, tasty, light-but-filling, comfort-food, meal that will appeal to even picky eaters.
Scroll down for illustrated step-by-step instructions, and printable recipe.
My most recent pannekoeken:
Last month, my son and I left Minnesota and visited my daughter and her beau in North Carolina. Though we ate out often during the vacation (so we Yankees could sample some local cuisine) my daughter asked me to make a few recipes from home. One dish she requested was pannekoeken.
As far as I can tell, this is a very Minnesotan thing to eat.
Of course, The Beau, a native North Carolinian, had never heard of it. He was game to try it though.
When the pannekoeken came out of the oven, he wasn’t sure what to think. He asked my son to snap the above photograph. Even before tasting it, he posted the pic to his Facebook, captioned with the question, “What am I eating?” His friends thought maybe it was Yorkshire Pudding or Bubble and Squeak. (Until they made these good guesses, it hadn’t occurred to me that it was similar to those recipes.)
Once The Beau figured out how* to eat it, he really liked it … according to him, it was possibly better than regular pancakes.
(*Honestly, IMHO, the best way to eat a pannekoeken is to slather it with jelly (the way my son and husband like it) or with lots of butter (the way my daughter and I like it), then pick it up, fold it over and eat it like some kind of weird Minnesota taco. The Beau seemed to enjoy it with butter and syrup, which did make it messier to eat. I guess it could be consumed with the help of a knife and fork, but it’s not as much fun.)
Is it really a pannekoeken?
As I was getting this post ready, I did my due diligence and googled the word. I have to tell you that either Wikipedia or I have it wrong. The listing at Wikipedia shows a picture of something that looks more like a pancake or crepe. It appears that one would eat several of them at a sitting, in the same way that most folks would eat a stack of flapjacks. One of these pancake-like things would be called a “pannekoek” or a “pannenkoek” with “pannekoken” reserved for the plural.
The following recipe makes something entirely different. Judging by looks alone, my version of pannekoeken is better. And I guarantee that it’s more fun.
(I’m also pretty sure that no one could eat more than one. My 18-year old, six foot, son can eat a whole one, but only barely.)
MAKING THE PANNEKOEKEN:
Here’s what you need:
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter
(It’s even an easy-to-memorize recipe.)
a measuring cup
a blender (or a strong arm and a whisk)
a 12 inch cast iron pan
a Pyrex glass 2 quart (9″ X 12″) rectangular baking pan
Making a successful pannekoeken is all in the techniques you use.
Here’s how you do it:
Step 1) For each pannekoeken you want to make, measure 1 cup milk into a container and add four eggs. (As you can see, the milk and eggs together measures about two cups.) Let come to room temperature. (At least 1 hour.)
Step 2) Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Depending on your oven this may take a while. The oven MUST be hot, so the batter will be shocked into trying to climb out of the pan.
You will need to preheat the cooking pan and the butter too, but you do that after the oven has reached the proper temperature. I preheat my oven for about 20 minutes then put my cast iron pan into the hot oven about 10 minutes before I want to start the baking. In the last 2-3 minutes of the preheating time, you will add the 2 tablespoons of butter to the hot cast iron pan so that it melts completely and starts to bubble. NOTE: If you are using the Pyrex dish, you will put the pan and butter into the oven at the same time and heat just just until the butter melts completely and starts to bubble.
Step 3) Blend the milk and eggs. Add two generous pinches of salt (1/2 teaspoon or a little more) to the whirring mixture, then introduce 1 cup flour, reasonably slowly. (Don’t fret about it, just don’t dump it in all at once.) You are looking to create a thin, bubbly batter. It only takes a minute or two, so I do this while the butter is melting. That way the batter is still airy when I pour it it into the pan.
Step 4) When the oven, pan and butter are hot, pour the batter into the pan quickly. You don’t want to let a lot of the heat escape in this process. I pull out the shelf using an oven mitt, pour the batter directly from the blender into the pan, slide the shelf back, and close the door.
Bake the pannekoeken for 18-25 minutes. Do not open the door for at least 15 minutes, and if you are checking for doneness after that, do it gently, opening the door as little as possible. After 18-20 minutes, the pannekoeken will be cooked through, puffed up, crispy on the outside and egg-y on the inside, and browning at the edges.
If you let it go a bit longer, it will brown more, and the exterior will crisp more. It’s a matter of taste which way you prefer it. (It’s unlikely you will want to cook it for more than 25 minutes.)
It will be very puffy! Likely it will have risen well above the edge of the pan.
Once it is removed from the oven, the pannekoeken will immediately start falling in the middle. There’s nothing you can do to stop it.
Step 5) Serve. When you remove the pan from the oven, and when you are taking the pannekoeken out of the pan, it is VERY IMPORTANT that you remember the cooking pan is VERY HOT. It’s best to use a thick oven mitt and a silicon or metal spatula while removing the pannekoeken from its pan.
(Why, yes, I have grabbed that smoking-hot handle bare-handed while trying to serve the pannekoeken. Once.)
If you used enough butter for your pan, it will come out easily, after you run your spatula around the edges to separate it from the pan. If it doesn’t come out cleanly, thoroughly scrape out any stuck-on bits and use a little more butter for subsequent pannekoeken.
Top your pannekoeken with whatever you like on pancakes.
- Jelly or Preserves
- Cinnamon & Sugar
- Warmed Pie Filling
I suppose one pannekoeken, prepared according to recipe, should probably serve 4. (I can do half of one, sometimes a little more.) According to an online recipe calorie calculator, a whole pannekoeken is about 1,100 calories. One fourth of one would be about 275 calories. Of course that’s before you top it with anything.
- This is one recipe in a growing collection of foods in the Body Preservation section if this blog.
- Pannekoeken is listed under the category “Food for Writers / Artists / Other Obsessives.” It could just as well have been archived as a “Getting Away With It Food.”
- For more recipes, and other paranormal lifestyle tips, please visit:
Whenever I make this bread, I am reminded of witches. I can’t help but think it would be wonderful for a cakes and ale ceremony on Esbat or Sabbat – especially one performed in autumn’s harvest months. On a more practical front, it’s also great for breakfast and as a snack to fortify an obsessive artist, writer or student.
The bread’s specialness comes from the WHOLE fruits it contains, as well as the richness of its honey and spices. It’s texture, density and weight is something like a banana or zucchini bread. It’s flavor is reminiscent of traditional Christmas fruit cake, but fresher.
It contains several nutrient-rich superfoods, and I don’t think the addition of some nuts or seeds would hurt it any. (Maybe I’ll try that next time.)
HONEY & FRUIT HARVEST BREAD
DETAILED, ILLUSTRATED INSTRUCTIONS
1) Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
2) Butter short sides of 2 loaf pans, and line center of pans with parchment paper.
3) In bowl #1, assemble, then mix:
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil (canola)
- 1/2 cup honey (Use the same cup you measured the oil in, it makes the honey pour out easier; use a rubber spatula to get all the honey.)
- 1/2 cup sugar
4) In bowl #2, assemble, then mix:
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup golden raisins
5) Measure raisins. Do not pack. Set aside. (Do not blend with apple and orange.)
- 1 small – medium apple
6) Wash, quarter, remove stem and seeds. (Do not peel.) Then chop.
This will yield approximately 2 cups chopped fruit.
- 1 tangerine OR 3-4 clementines (These have lovely aromatic oils in the skin, but little bitter, white pith.)
7) Wash thin-skinned orange-like fruit and trim off stem end. (Do not peel.) Then chop fruit, discarding seeds.
This will yield approximately 1 cup of chopped fruit.
8) In blender or food processor, combine chopped orange and chopped apple. Pulse until finely chopped.
This can be a pain. Be patient. Don’t reach in with fingers. If necessary, remove blender canister from base, turn upside down and thump to free fruit, then continue.
9) When apple and orange are finely chopped, add 3/4 cup liquid, as follows:
- 1/2 cup apple juice
- 1/4 cup STRONG brewed coffee, not hot (I use some of my iced coffee concentrate.)
As long as this totals 3/4 cup, you can use any proportion you like. Next time I’ll be including a shot of apple brandy or something similar.
10) Blend fruit and the 3/4 cup of liquids to create a puree.
There can, and should be, bits of identifiable fruit in the final mix.
ASSEMBLE THE LOAVES:
11) Add and mix approximately half of the blended fruit mixture into the eggs, oil, sugar, honey mixture in bowl #1.
12) Add and mix approximately half of the flour mixture into bowl #1.
14) Stir in golden raisins.
15) Divide batter evenly into 2 prepared loaf pans.
16) Bake approximately 40-45 minutes, until toothpick test shows only crumbs and not batter.
17) Let cool in pans until easy to handle. Lift out with parchment paper.
18) Remove parchment and let cool completely.
MAKE IT SHINY:
If desired, make honey / juice glaze as follows:
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon clementine, tangerine or orange juice
Brush mixture over completely cooled loaves, 1- 3 times at approximately half-hour intervals.
This does soak into the bread, creating a flavorful but sticky “crust”. It’s pretty, but I prefer to leave the honey fruit bread plain. (Which makes it easier to eat as a snack while at the keyboard.)
Primary recipe category: Food for Writers / Artists / Other Obsessives (Also qualified to be on the Gorgeous / Decadent list.)
FOR COFFEE RECIPE SCROLL DOWN.
I’m working furiously on my manuscript these days, and I don’t feel like composing thematically appropriate blog posts. I didn’t even want to take my scheduled Artist Date, (ala Julia Cameron) until I realized the significance of today’s date. I knew I had to start the countdown when it occurred to me to wonder how the pumpkins are coming along.
When I got to the nearest produce farm, the owner wasn’t home. So I went prowling his fields anyway. (Respectfully and carefully, of course.) I discovered the pumpkins aren’t really doing much right now. Well, the vines are looking healthy and sprawly, but what you see up in the collage is a squash. The pumpkins are barely blooming yet.
I was heading back to the truck, with all the pictures I needed, when the farmer came home. Long story short, we made friends, and I’ve been invited back to check on the pumpkins any time. He’s confident they will be ready in time for Halloween.
Meanwhile, IT IS STILL SUMMER DAMMIT, and I’m drinking a lot of iced coffee. Earlier today, I instagram-ed a photograph of it which garnered some interest and requests for the “recipe”. The process is really more of a method, I think, but I’m willing to share.
ICED COFFEE CONCENTRATE:
You will need:
- time (overnight or, better, 12 hours)
- good water (room temp / tepid, not ice-cold or hot; my tap water has been working fine)
- coarse-ground coffee (grind it on the coarsest available setting at the grocery store – that’s as far away from ‘Turkish” or espresso as possible; we’ll talk about amounts in a minute)
- two pitchers (or other glass containers)
- a fine sieve
More about the equipment:
Sieve – If you are a coffee drinker, just save yourself some hassle and buy a fine-mesh sieve (see photo) if you don’t already have one. If this recipe stops you from buying one fancy iced coffee a week, you’ll pay for the sieve in no time. Yes, if you insist, you can do this with coffee filters or cheesecloth. (I did it that way the first time. It works, but you have to be patient. I am not patient.)
Pitchers – The size of your available pitchers will determine the amount of concentrate you can make at one time. (See below.) I prefer to use glass, rather than plastic, which would stain terribly. As you can see, I get by with a mason jar and small, crock-style pitcher.
You will use 1 part coffee to every 4.5 parts water. That means:
- for 8 cups of water use 1 and 1/2 cups of grounds
- for 6 cups of water use 1 and 1/3 cups of grounds
- Step 1: Stir the appropriate amount of coffee grounds into the appropriate amount of water.
- Step 2: Refridgerate overnight or, better, for 12 hours.
- Step 3: Strain the grounds from the water by passing it through the sieve, between the pitchers, 2-3 times.*
- Step 4: Store coffee concentrate in fridge. (I have no idea how long it will keep, because I always drink it all within 3-5 days.)
NOTE: Measure pitcher capacity before you start. I use the 6 cup recipe. I steep the coffee in my pitcher. My mason jar is a little small even for 6 cups, but a lot of the water stays in the grounds, so the mason jar can take what comes from the first straining. If I have a little extra, that’s just my first glass of iced coffee.
*Things to know about the straining process:
- It’s easiest to scoop the floating layer of grounds off the top of the coffee to start. Just try not to get too much liquid.
- You may need to discard grounds out of the sieve several times during the first straining.
- Don’t press on the grounds to get more concentrate, it will get bitter.
- Lots of grounds may stay in the first pitcher after you’ve poured all the water away. Just discard them and rinse pitcher.
- After the first straining there won’t be many grounds in the sieve BUT a little residue of denser solution will have settled at the bottom of the pitcher. Discard these dregs with each straining.
To prepare a glass of iced coffee, using concentrate:
Again with the ratios: use 1 part concentrate to 3 parts fresh, cold water. Adjust ratio to taste.
So, for example, the following illustration was made with:
- 1/3 cup concentrate
- a little splash of heavy cream
- 1 cup water
- ice to fill the glass
I don’t like any sweetener in my coffee, but if you do, be aware that sugar is unlikely to dissolve well in a cold solution. The easy answer is to invest in a bottle of your favorite coffee flavoring. (Or make your own – but that’s for another post.) Of course MY favorite flavoring is this:
Enjoy your summer, folks.
Halloween is coming.
Primary recipe category: Food for Writers / Artists / Other Obsessives