I had a wondrous blueberry pancake experience in New York earlier this year. It was Saturday morning and snow was swirling outside in the street. People bustled past the hotel restaurant windows in scarves and hats, trying to control their umbrellas. Comfort food was called for… and delivered. The sweet, maple sauce-sticky stack that turned up on the table still has the power to make me dribble a bit: the pancakes were light, fluffy, bursting with fat berries, and frosted with icing sugar.
I’ve often woken up on a lazy Sunday morning and fantasised about that delicious breakie but sadly there seems to be a dearth of good – or at least reasonably priced – pancake joints in this little corner of north London – so I haven’t been able to satisfy my pancake urges very often.
Thank goodness I had an egg-cracking epiphany recently – now I can try and make them for myself. So I found a recipe (that makes 10!) and went for it.
200g of self-raising flour
1tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
knob of butter
supermarket packet of blueberries
sunflower oil or butter for cooking
See… I made such a good start. A perfect little milk/egg combo. I even sifted my flour now I know what sifted means. But then disaster struck. That little jug of milk and egg put itself in the way of my little finger and my little finger not knowing what had hit it, launched it into the air, covering myself and the kitchen in the process.
A small tantrum, ten minutes, and fresh pair of pyjamas later, I was ready to start again. So here is what I did, from the beginning:
1) SIFTED my flour into a big bowl, added the baking powder and pinch of salt.
2) Measured 300ml of milk into a jug, cracked an egg (into another little dish, for safety) then stirred it in. Fellow cooking virgins, my mum gave me a tip should you get shell in your white. Use one of your egg shell halves to scoop the cracked bits out. It works.
3) Make a well in your flour mix and pour in the eggy-milk, whisk it until you get a smooth batter then chuck in as many blueberries as you fancy.
4) Heat a tbsp of sunflower oil in the pan; when it looks kind of nice and warm and ready, take a tablespoon (a tbsp) and plop a dollop of your batter into the pan, add more until you have what looks like a circle-ish shape of about 7cm wide. Cook over a medium heat. I did all this with just the one pancake at first. I think two in a saucepan at one time is sensible for beginners.
5) Fry for about 3 minutes until small bubbles start to form on the surface of your batter-y pancake.
6) Get one of those flat things (name escapes me) and flip your pancake on its tummy and cook for another three minutes or until golden.
7) Et voila, serve with maple syrup, a dusting of icing sugar and throw a few more blueberries on if you fancy it.
And here’s the stack I made afterwards (with only the teensiest bit of help from my assistant). And do you know what? They tasted really good. I will be whipping these up (though hopefully not whipping them all over the kitchen and myself) again.
Blueberry Pancake Making Stats:
Number of kitchen cock-ups: ONE MASSIVE ONE.
Number of times I whisked milk and eggs together: TWO
What I listened to: the sound of things crashing
End result: Yummers