Did you know?
- Pancakes have been around for a long time, know as Tagenites they were eaten by the Ancient Greeks for breakfast made with wheat flour, olive oil, honey, and curdled milk.
- Olney in Buckinghamshire has been hosting annual pancake races since 1445. According to the story it stared after a woman was late for church and ran still clutching the pan containing a pancake in her hand.
- In 1994 the largest pancake ever was made in Rochdale, Manchester it was 15 metres across!
- Professional pancake art is actually a thing!
Shrove Tuesday / Pancake Day 2021, Tuesday 16th February
Traditionally Lent, the 40 days leading up to Easter was a time of fasting. During the Middle Ages Christians were prohibited from eating eggs during Lent because of their richness.
Shrove Tuesday (Pancake Day) is the traditional feast day before the start of Lent on Ash Wednesday. It was the day to use up all the goodies in your cupboards and pancakes are a great way to do that hence pancake day!
Store cupboard ingredients
The main differences between types of pancakes is the ingredients. Traditionally pancakes in the UK are thin and don’t use any raising agent. Similar to the continental crêpes which are usually a little larger and with richer ingredients. Whilst the traditional American pancake does include raising agents to create a fluffy thicker pancake.
Pancakes a world of possibilities
Every country has their own version of pancakes from French crêpes and Dutch Poffertjes to Korean Hotteok and fluffy Japanese pancakes. Even in the UK we have variations like scotch pancakes / drop scones.
The best thing about pancakes is almost anything goes sweet or savoury, filling or light.
I am a big fan of fruit with pancakes from piles of berries on top or grilled pineapples. A great winter option is my Apple Pancakes where grated apple is mixed into the batter.
Buckwheat flour is great for savoury pancakes and you can also replace the milk with fizzy water which gives you holes in the pancake and goes great with ham and cheese. Using buttermilk provides a richer taste.
Blinis are perfect for smoked salmon and cream cheese for special occasions. Ricotta Hotcakes are another great savoury option.
One of my personal favourites is classic pancakes with bacon and egg. Another favourite is blueberry pancakes, I like to use frozen blueberries as they hold their shape a bit better when cooked.
You can’t beat a sweet pancake, ice cream, Nutella, cream, chocolate sauce.
The classic combo in my house is always lemon and sugar. However for those weekend treats then the syrup comes out. I am a golden syrup girl but my husband is maple syrup all the way. Other syrup options are agave syrup, treacle or honey.
Golden syrup is a popular topping in the UK tastes a bit like caramel and is essentially white sugar in a different form. Over in the US maple syrup is more common – an amber syrup with some similarities to honey is made from the sap of the maple tree.
Agave syrup, treacle, maple syrup or golden syrup. You can add whatever you like to a pancake so have a dig around and use up whatever is in your cupboard.
If you are planning to make these with your kids you may want to use my printable step by step guide over at The Autism Page.
What are your favourite type of pancakes?