Weekend breakfast pancakes were a big thing in my family when I was growing up. There were two recipes that we alternated between: ‘American-style’ fluffy pancakes and oaty pancakes, and we happily ate either variety with maple syrup and a jar of mum’s preserved Central Otago peaches.
It seems that pancakes were taken seriously at Lois’ house too; Good Food includes two recipes: one for crisp and puffy pancakes and another for soft and puffy pancakes. This is one of the reasons I love Lois; who else would make this careful but important distinction?
In case you are wondering what the difference between the two is, it’s in the cooking method. Using a more generous amount of butter to cook the pancakes results in a crisp and puffy pancake, while a soft and puffy pancake is produced by merely wiping the pan with some butter paper to ensure that the pancakes don’t stick.
Crisp & puffy pancakes (Lois Daish, Good Food, p. 52)
2 free-range eggs
2 cups milk
4 tablespoons melted butter (melted in the pan that you are going to cook the pancakes in)
2 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon caster sugar
butter for frying (add a splotch of cooking oil to prevent it from burning)
Separate the eggs; put the yolks in a large bowl and the whites into a medium-sized one. Whisk the egg whites until stiff. Add the milk and melted butter to the yolks. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and sugar and stir into the egg yolk mixture, then fold in the egg whites.
Heat a large frying pan over a medium heat; you may need to keep adjusting the temperature of the pan to ensure that it doesn’t get too hot. Add a small nob of butter and small splash of cooking oil to the pan (this will help to prevent the butter burning). Use a small measuring cup to drop a circle of batter into the pan. Cook until bubbles appear on the surface and remain open without closing over again. Flip over, and cook until the pancake is firm in the middle. Best eaten straight from the pan, but you can also stack cooked pancakes on a plate in a low oven to keep warm while you cook the rest.