Dutch baby pancakes, puffy and golden brown, are my go-to dish for wholesome and nourishing breakfasts. At night, when I’ve tucked my son into his cotton quilts and woolen blankets, I ask him what he wants to eat for the next morning’s breakfast. So many dishes, properly prepared, need time – soaked oatmeal porridge, baked oatmeal or buttermilk biscuits, for instance. And while eggs are a household favorite, more often than not, “PANCAKES!” comes his reply. Like most moms, I don’t have a lot of time in the mornings and as much as I love food and cooking, the painstaking process of pouring, flipping and turning every single pancake makes me shudder. I get bored, check my email and burn half the batch of pancakes in the process. It’s not a pretty sight, and we’re left with a mountain of dirty dishes and batter-splattered counter-tops as a result.
So when he asks for pancakes, I negotiate. “How about a Dutch baby?” I ask. He acquiesces and we’re both satisfied.
Dutch baby pancakes are sinfully easy to prepare. In their simplest form, you can mix a quick batter, pour it into a skillet and throw it into the oven for a half-hour to forty-five minutes. Me? I like to complicate things, if only slightly – preferring instead to fry some fruit and pour the batter over the fruit. I use less sugar that way, and add a little variety to the meal.
While regular pancakes are primarily composed of flour and a sweetener with eggs used as a binder; a Dutch baby is primarily composed of eggs and milk with a bit of flour and sugar included. So while the ingredients are more or less the same, the proportions are different. In my family, we tend to err in favor of the inclusion of fats and protein – like that provided by farm fresh eggs which are extraordinarily rich fat-soluble vitamins E, D and A as well as beta carotene; moreover, farm-fresh eggs offer a favorable fatty acid ratio.
- 2 tbsp clarified butter or ghee
- 3 medium apples, (cored and chopped into ¼-inch dice)
- 6 eggs, (beaten)
- ½ cup milk, (not ultrapasteurized)
- ½ cup whole grain sprouted flour
- no more than ¼ cup whole unrefined cane sugar
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
- ¼ tsp unrefined sea salt
- 1 lemon, (sliced thin, to serve)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Melt clarified butter in a cast iron skillet over a moderate flame, then toss in chopped apples. Fry the apples in butter until they release their perfume and become tender when pierced by a fork, about six to eight minutes.
- Beat eggs and milk together in a separate bowl until smooth and uniform, then beat in sprouted flour, unrefined cane sugar, cinnamon, cloves and sea salt. Continue beating the batter for the Dutch baby until it is smooth with no lumps. The batter will be very liquid.
- Remove the skillet from the heat, pour the Dutch baby batter over the cooked apples and bake in an oven preheated to 425 degrees Fahrenheit for thirty-five to forty-five minutes until puffed and golden.
- Serve the Dutch baby pancake immediately, garnished with sliced lemon.