I was making breakfast this morning and thought I’d play around a bit with one of my favorite recipes. The recipe is called “Jan’s German Pancake” but since it’s originally from my Aunt Jody, I honestly am not entirely sure who “Jan” is. Jan is not one of my aunts… not one of the people that I remember meeting when I would visit her… not a close relative, that I know of… so the name simply lives on in the recipe.
That being said, I’ve been using this recipe for decades. It’s a simple recipe that is easy to decrease or increase, depending on the size crowd you may be feeding. I typically use a half recipe when feeding 2-3 people, unless those three are my husband and sons… then I make a full recipe just for them. Given my preference for using The Force, you’ll be surprised to see that this post is in “recipe” form… enjoy it, as it doesn’t happen often!
2 cups milk (I use skim, since that’s what we always have in our house)
4 eggs (you can use FF egg substitute if you prefer)
2 cups flour (I like white flour – wheat flour doesn’t “poof”)
1 teaspoon salt
*2 teaspoons dried egg whites
*1/4 cup James River Cellars’ Hanover White
4 Tablespoons of butter or margarine (to melt in the pan – I use 2 T of butter and 2 T of margarine)
I preheat the oven to 400 degrees and slide a 9×13 pan with butter/margarine inside to melt. While the pan is in the oven, mix eggs and milk together with a whisk until very frothy. Add dried egg whites and wine and whisk until thoroughly incorporated.
Once all the “wet” ingredients are combined, add the salt and then begin to whisk in the flour, half cup by half cup. Make sure that your batter is thoroughly combined and smooth… lumpy pancake doesn’t tend to rise nicely.
Once the batter is made (the fat is melted) you’re going to pour the batter into the “smokin’ hot” pan. Do this quickly so your pan doesn’t have a chance to cool at all. Bake your German Pancake for 30 minutes and hope to see a “poof” in the middle (see large photo). This will deflate when you pull it out, but the resulting dish will be lighter than if it doesn’t poof.
In my opinion, this is a breakfast that needs some sort of topping… my guys like to simply use pancake syrup, but I’ve been known to use jam, fresh fruit, or even a combination of cream cheese with some jelly. A sweetened cream cheese would work nicely as well. It would be tasty to add some sort of breakfast meat along side, if you’re feeding a crowd that wants “more”. Bacon or sausage, links or patties, anything that sounds delicious to you works well. This is a “tame” breakfast that can easily handle those savory additions.
Note: The ingredients that have an asterisk (*) are ones that I added to this morning’s recipe. You can absolutely delete them if you’d prefer and the dish will come out beautifully. It’s entirely up to you…. and isn’t that the point of being the chef?