American Pancakes

Obviously everyone loves pancakes. My favourite are the American kind, that’s to say the thick, fluffy ones you have with maple syrup. It’s become a bit of a regular occurrence in this house to have pancakes with bacon and maple syrup at some point over the weekend, but they’re just so easy and quick to make I just can’t resist. Coupled with the fact that I always have the ingredients in the house makes them a bit of a no-brainer.

I’ve tried a few recipes for pancakes and have settled on the following Rachel Allen recipe as my favourite. Not least because this amount of mixture makes six 10-15cm diameter pancakes which is perfect for two people, and the mixture only uses one egg which is great because there have been so many times when I want to make a nice breakfast but only have one egg left! I also love this recipe because the batter is nice and thick, so it’s really easy to dollop out into the pan and spread out to whatever size pancake you like. The recipe is SO easy to remember as well, definitely no excuses!

American Pancakes

Serves 2 (makes 6 pancakes)

150g self raising flour

2 tbsp caster sugar

1 egg

150 ml milk


Measure out the flour and sift it into a bowl and stir in the caster sugar. Make a well in the centre.

Break in the egg and beat into the flour. Gradually add the milk and whisk until you get a smooth batter. I find if you add the milk bit by bit, and only add more once the mixture is smooth, then it’s really easy and quick to end up with a lump-free batter. Adding all the milk at once and then whisking I find creates more lumps!

Once the batter is made you can leave it to rest for a while, although I don’t really think it makes a huge difference with this recipe, the pancakes still come out fluffy and thick without resting.

Heat a frying pan (I use a Le Creuset omelette pan which is a perfect size for these pancakes) until really quite hot. You know how when you make pancakes the first one usually comes out really pale and anaemic looking? That’s just because the pan isn’t hot enough. It’s worth waiting just that little bit longer for it to get nice and hot. If in doubt, add a blob of mixture to the pan to test it. If it turns golden, then the pan is ready. If you’re using a good non-stick pan I don’t think you need to oil it, but if your pan isn’t non stick then pour some oil onto some kitchen towel and rub it over the pan (you really only need a very thin coating).

Add a spoonful of the batter to the pan and spread it out with the back of the spoon to the size you want. Once the pancake starts forming bubbles on the surface that pop, it’s ready to flip over. They will only take one or two minutes a side if the pan is hot. Oncc you’ve flipped it the pancake is cooked if it’s golden on both sides and the middle feels spongy. Just keep repeating until all the pancakes are done!

To keep the pancakes warm (particularly if I’m doing a big batch) I usually heat a plate or a serving dish in the oven, then take it out and stack the pancakes on top of each other. When the pancakes are stacked they generally keep each other warm. Don’t be tempted to put them in the oven to keep warm, they’ll just dry up and go crispy. To be honest, they take such a short time to cook there’s no need to make them too far ahead. If I’ve got a lot of people for breakfast I have been known to have two or three pans on the go at the same time, all cooking up pancakes! It’s quick but not to be recommended if you have high blood pressure.

Obviously you can serve these with whatever you like. This time I chose bananas and maple syrup but I also love bacon, blueberries, Nigella’s blueberry syrup (blueberries boiled with maple syrup, SO GOOD), strawberries, nutella, jam… ANYTHING!