Mardi Gras: Fat Tuesday. Somehow it sounds better in French. Traditionally it was when you ate all the rich foods left in your pantry before Lent’s 40 days of penitential fasting.
According to Wikipedia popular practices on Mardi Gras include “wearing masks and costumes, overturning social conventions, dancing, sports competitions, parades, debauchery, etc.”
I quite like the sound of the debauchery etc, although eating fattening pancakes is about as sinful as I get these days. As Pancake Day falls on my birthday this year I’m throwing caution to the winds and partying on down with these classic pancakes. Oh, the glamour.
I’ve added links below to various other pancake recipes you might like to try.
Classic English Pancakes
I’ve called these English pancakes as they’re what I grew up eating, although of course the French would claim them as crepes.
100 g plain flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
250 ml milk
50g butter, melted, plus a bit more for frying
Large pinch of salt
Lemon quarters and sugar, to serve
Put the flour and salt in a large bowl and whisk in the eggs and half the milk until you have a smooth batter. Add the melted butter and enough of the remaining milk to get the consistency of thin cream. Set aside for at least half an hour to allow the starch granules time to expand.
To make the pancakes, melt a small amount of butter in the frying pan on a medium-high heat. When it’s sizzling (but before it burns), tip the pan from side to side to coat the base.
Pour in enough batter to thinly cover the base of the pan, tipping again, and cook until the underside is golden and the edges are beginning to brown and crisp. Now toss it, or play safe and flip it over with a spatula.
Once the second side is cooked, slip the pancake onto a plate and continue until you’ve used all the batter. Pass them round as soon as they’re done, squeeze over plenty of lemon juice and sprinkle with sugar.
Buttermilk Pancakes: the American classic, with maple syrup and optional crispy bacon.
Strawberry and Vanilla Pancakes: 3D rating – decadent and devastatingly delicious.
Chinese Pancakes with Crispy Duck and Plum Sauce: because it’s Chinese New Year, how many excuses do you need?
Filled Pancakes (Vegetarian): created for my veggie friend Pippa but enjoyed by everyone (even the carnivores).
Blinis: a great recipe from Richard Bertinet with a nifty tip from his grandma.
Sweetcorn Fritters: another American classic and brilliant with chicken.