The only recipes you need to sweeten up your pancake day, from a classic crepe with lemon and sugar to beetroot drop scones and a custard-filled stack

Ricotta pancakes with sour cherries, clotted cream and honey.

Ricotta pancakes with sour cherries, clotted cream and honey.
Photograph: Uyen Luu for the Guardian

Ricotta pancakes with sour cherries, clotted cream and honey (pictured above)

Prep 10-15 min
Cook 2 min per pancake
Makes 18

100g dried and sweetened sour cherries (or cranberries), whole or roughly chopped
6 tbsp water
2 tbsp caster sugar
A few knobs of butter
1 large egg
150g self-raising flour
250ml milk
1 generous pinch salt flakes, crushed
250g ricotta
Clear honey and clotted cream, to serve

Heat a small saucepan over a medium heat. Put the sour cherries into the pan with the water, sugar and a knob of butter. Gently heat the mixture as the cherries hydrate. After five to six minutes, take the pan off the heat and leave to cool.

Heat a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. In a bowl, combine the egg, flour, milk and crushed salt, and whisk well without over-beating. Don’t worry if the batter is not perfectly smooth. Stir in the ricotta.

Put a couple of knobs of butter into the hot pan and pour in a generous tablespoon of the batter to make one pancake. Cook as many pancakes as you can simultaneously without overcrowding the pan. After cooking for roughly a minute, flip over the pancakes and cook for a minute on the other side, or until golden brown. Repeat until all the batter has been used.

Serve the pancakes with a good drizzle of clear honey, a few dollops of clotted cream and the cherries.

From Sirocco, by Sabrina Ghayour (Mitchell Beazley)

Classic pancakes

Classic pancakes with a squeeze.

Classic pancakes with a squeeze. Photograph: Uyen Luu for the Guardian

Prep 10 min
Rest 30 min
Cook 3-4 min per pancake
Makes About 12

125g plain flour
1 pinch salt
1 egg
1 tbsp melted butter
300ml whole milk
Oil for frying
Butter, lemon and sugar, to serve

Sift the flour and salt into a mixing bowl, then make a well in the centre. Crack the egg into the well, then add the melted butter and half the milk. Gradually stir the liquid into the flour with a wooden spoon, until all the ingredients have been incorporated. Beat well to make a smooth batter. Stir in the remaining milk and let stand for about 30 minutes. Stir again before using.

To make the pancakes, heat a small, heavy-based frying pan until very hot, then turn down the heat to medium. Lightly grease with oil and ladle in enough batter to coat the base of the pan thinly (two-three tablespoons), tilting the pan so the mixture spreads evenly.

Cook over a medium heat for one to two minutes, or until the batter looks dry on top and begins to brown at the edges. Flip the pancake with a spatula, and cook the second side.

Turn out on to a plate, smear with a little butter, sprinkle with sugar and, finally, splash with a squeeze of lemon juice – or simply with Nutella.

From The Farmette Cookbook, by Imen McDonnell (Roost Books)

Vegan multigrain pancakes

Izy Hossack’s vegan multigrain pancakes.

Izy Hossack’s vegan multigrain pancakes. Photograph: Uyen Luu for the Guardian

Prep 5-10 min
Cook 2-3 min per pancake
Makes 18-24

150g oat flour
90g rolled oats
240g plain white or wholemeal flour
3 tsp baking powder
¾ tsp bicarbonate of soda
¾ tsp salt
3 tbsp granulated sugar
3 tbsp ground flaxseed
600ml non-dairy milk
3 tsp apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
6 tbsp olive oil or rapeseed oil, plus extra for frying
Maple syrup. sliced fruit and chopped nuts, to serve

Combine all the dry ingredients in a medium bowl. Add the wet ingredients and stir with a fork or small whisk until just combined.

Heat a large, nonstick frying pan and add just enough oil to coat the base of the pan. Once the oil is hot, turn down the heat to medium-low and pour a few tablespoons of batter into the pan to form a pancake, about 8cm in diameter. Repeat this so you have three or four in the pan. Cook the pancakes until the edges change colour and the underside is golden, then flip and cook on the other side until golden. Transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining batter.

Serve hot with maple syrup, chopped nuts and your choice of fruit (we suggest mango, banana and passionfruit).

From The Savvy Cook, by Izy Hossack (Mitchell Beazley)

Currant cottage-cheese pancakes

Deborah Madison’s currant cottage cheese pancakes.

Deborah Madison’s currant cottage cheese pancakes. Photograph: Uyen Luu for the Guardian

Prep 5-10 min
Cook 2 min per pancake
Makes About 20

145g dried currants or raisins
225g cottage cheese
230g sour cream, plus more to serve
5 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp grated lemon zest
Several gratings of nutmeg
1 tbsp sugar
125g plain flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
Butter, for frying
Sugar and lemon, to serve

Unless the currants are soft, cover them with very hot water and set aside to plump while you make the batter.

Whisk together the cottage cheese and sour cream, then beat in the eggs one at a time. Stir in the vanilla, lemon zest, nutmeg and sugar, then add the flour, baking powder and salt, and stir gently to combine without overmixing.

Drain the currants, blot them with paper towel to dry them a bit more and gently fold into the batter.

Melt a tablespoon of butter in a wide frying pan and, when it’s hot, drop in the batter by the spoonful. Cook on a medium heat until browned on the bottom, then flip and cook until lightly coloured on the other side.

Serve the pancakes with caster sugar and a wedge of lemon, plus extra sour cream if desired.

Deborah Madison, Genius Recipes by Food52, ed Kristen Miglore (Ten Speed)

Sweet beetroot drop scones

Rosie Reynolds’ beetroot drop scones.

Rosie Reynolds’ beetroot drop scones. Photograph: Uyen Luu for the Guardian

Prep 15 min
Cook 4 min per pancake
Makes About 12

50g butter
2 tbsp vegetable oil
200g raw beetroot (ie 2 medium-sized ones), coarsely grated
100ml milk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 tbsp sugar
175g self-raising flour

To serve
150g dark chocolate, melted
300ml whipping cream, whipped with 1 tbsp caster sugar

Heat half the butter and a drizzle of oil in a large frying pan, fry the grated beetroot for two minutes, stirring frequently – you want it just to soften slightly. Tip out into a bowl and leave to cool for a few minutes. Stir in the milk, beaten egg and sugar. Then gradually stir in the flour; you want a thick, smooth batter.

Wipe the frying pan and heat a little of the remaining butter and a splash of oil. When foaming, add scant dessertspoons of the batter, spacing them well apart. Cook for about two minutes, or until bubbles appear on the surface. Flip over and cook for two minutes more – don’t flatten your drop scones, you want to keep all of the fluffy centre. Keep the finished scones warm while you cook the remaining ones in the rest of the butter and oil.

Serve three drop scones per person drizzled with melted chocolate and topped with a dollop of whipped cream.

Recipe by Rosie Reynolds, co-author of The Kitchen Shelf (Phaidon)

Cardamom custard pancakes

Nordic-style: Simon Bajada’s cardamon custard pancakes.

Nordic-style: Simon Bajada’s cardamon custard pancakes. Photograph: Uyen Luu for the Guardian

Prep 5-10 min
Rest 1 hr
Cook 2 min per pancake
Makes 4-6

150g plain flour
250ml whole milk
125ml lukewarm water
3 tbsp caster sugar
4 large eggs
80g unsalted butter, melted

For the custard
500ml whole milk
3 cardamom pods
6 large egg yolks
110g caster sugar
30g cornflour
2 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
150ml whipped cream (optional)
Zest of 1 orange and runny honey, to serve

For the custard, heat the milk in a small saucepan until steaming. Crack the cardamom pods, add to the milk, then turn off the heat and leave to infuse for 10 minutes.

Whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and corn flour in a bowl. Remove the cardamom pods from the milk and whisk a quarter of it into the egg mix. Pour in the rest of the milk and whisk until smooth. Return the custard to the pan and bring to a boil on a medium heat, whisking. Cook for a minute or two, still whisking, until the mix thickens. Set the base of the pan in an ice-cold water bath, stirring. When it is almost cool, stir in the butter, then chill the mix in the fridge.

For the batter: mix the flour, milk, water, sugar, eggs, half the butter and a pinch of salt, to make a pourable, thick batter. Cover with clingfilm and put in the fridge for an hour.

On a medium heat, coat the base of a nonstick frying pan with melted butter. Add two to three tablespoons of batter, Lift, tilt and rotate the pan, so that the batter forms an even, thin layer, cook for 30 seconds to a minute, until golden underneath, then flip and repeat. Turn out on to a warm plate and with the remaining batterwhile you cook the rest.

Whisk the custard lightly, folding in whipped cream if you would like it to be lighter, then layer the cooled pancakes with custard in between, reserving a few tablespoonfuls for later. Cover in clingfilm and put in the fridge to setchill for at least an hour. To serve, spread the reserved custard on top, drizzle with runny honey, sprinkle with the orange zest and cut into wedges.

Adapted from The New Nordic, by Simon Bajada (Hardie Grant)

  • Food styling: Tamara Vos. Prop styling: Anna Wilkins
  • This article was edited on 13 February 2017 to clarify the cooking times for each pancake. An earlier version included resting time in the calculations.


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