Fabulous German pancake recipe

This easy-to-make recipe is just too good to not share. I cut it out of the Jan. 14, 2010 Orange County Register and have made it three times since.

German Pancake

1/4 cup butter

3 eggs

3/4 C milk

3/4 C flour

Toppings (powdered sugar, fresh fruit, maple syrup, whipped cream)

Place butter in a 12″ cast iron skillet  or 2-qt. round oven-proof casserole. Heat oven to 425-degrees F. to melt butter while preparing the batter.

Blend eggs for 1 minute in a blender, gradually pour in milk, then add flour (I use King Arthur white whole wheat flour) and blend for 30 seconds more. Carefully pour batter into hot pan (remember to use a pot holder on that hot pan handle!). Batter should sizzle when it hits the pan. Bake at 425 for 20-25 minutes until pancake is puffy and well-browned.

Pancake will be high, puffy, and crispy on the bottom.

Sprinkle powdered sugar on top--I sift it through a tea strainer to apply.

Cut into quarters, transfer to plates, and top with fresh fruit, hot real maple syrup, and optional whipped cream.

This is so simple to make and decandently delicious. The recipe says it serves 4-6, but not in our house. The two of us gobble up the whole thing. Be sure to use real butter and real maple syrup for best taste. And if the fruit is organic and locally grown, BRAVO!

For this version, I used fresh strawberries and blueberries, but many different kinds of fresh or frozen fruit will work. I can hardly wait to try this with fresh peaches and nectarines from my garden. My Florida Prince peach is in full bloom, and now that the rain has stopped, bees are pollinating the blossoms. Peaches from that tree will be the first stone fruit from my garden this spring.

Florida Prince peach tree in bloom in our yard.

Making this dish is also a nostalgic connection to both Vic’s and my grandmothers. The cast iron skillet is about 100 years old and belonged to his Grandma Brian. I season it in the oven for an hour at 275 degrees F. with Crisco solid shortening every year to keep that nice black patina. I almost never wash it with soap and water, just wipe it out.

The other nostalgic connection is the plates. My Grandma Wilson had Currier and Ives plates that were promotional items from her grocery store in the 1950s. I don’t have her actual set dishes, but collected a complete set at various antique stores. I call them “grandma’s pattern” dishes and enjoy using this connection to my past.

(To read more of Lou Murray’s environmental writing, see her weekly column, Natural Perspectives, in the Huntington Beach Independent at www.hbindependent.com /blogs_and_columns

About Lou Murray, Ph.D.

I'm a professional writer/photographer, avid gardener, and active environmentalist living in southern California. I am retired from writing a weekly newspaper column on environmental topics in the Huntington Beach Independent, but I am still teaching at the Orange County Conservation Corps. This blog chronicles my efforts to live a green life growing as much food as possible for my husband and myself on a 4,500 sq ft yard that is covered mainly by house, garage, driveway, and sidewalks.
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