It’s Pancake Day tomorrow, and if you want to have a go at cooking some for friends and family, you might want to take note of these 5 tips from Gary Durrant, a 5* London head chef.
- Pick a pancake style
Almost every country and culture has its own version of pancakes, from a Malaysian ‘Lempeng’ made with banana and coconut, to a French crepe, fat Canadian pancake stack, or classic British pancakes served with sugar and lemon. The mixture for pancakes differs depending on the country’s readily available ingredients, such as corn in Venezuela, cabbage in Japan and rice in Nepal. All types of pancakes are relatively easy to make, so why not consider trying some different kinds to spice up your pancake day.
- Fat matters
If making traditional English pancakes, make sure to use plenty of fat to get the batter nice and crispy. If you use oil, then I recommend vegetable oil, and if you use butter, then clarified butter works best.
Pancakes should usually only take about 2-3 minutes to cook, but its best to ignore the clock and check for bubbles on the top of the pancake which means its ready to flip over. Make sure not to cook it for much longer than 2-3 minutes though, as the batter could dry out.
Pancakes are delicious both sweet and savoury, depending on your taste. They go very well with fresh fruit, chocolate and maple syrup, but equally well with ham, cheese and bacon for example. Try using different cheeses such as brie, ricotta, or blue cheese which taste amazing when melted inside a crispy pancake.
- Hitting the pan
Don’t just dollop the mixture in with any old kitchen utensil. It’s helpful if you spoon the batter into the pan using a large ladle so it can be poured into the hot pan in one go. As soon as the batter hits the pan, tip it around from side to side to get the base evenly coated with a nice thin layer of batter.
Here is a simple pancake recipe for making around 10 pancakes:
75g – Plain flour
120ml – Full fat milk
Pinch of sugar
Pinch of salt