Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Shrove Tuesday or Pancake Day!

Photo courtesy of Nigella Lawson's website.
 Shrove Tuesday is the day before Ash Wednesday.  I guess in the States we call it Fat Tuesday.  Here, in England it's also called Pancake Day as there is a tradition, you may guess, of eating pancakes on this day.  There are pancake races, particularly in Olney, representing the young mother racing to feed her family and getting to church on time.  For more info go here.

Pancake day for me is fun.  This year I decided to go all out and literally have pancakes all day long.  I made the kids American pancakes in the morning with butter and syrup.  I made a couple extra for them to take to school, instead of a sandwich, with some raspberry jam to dip it in.  Then, for dinner I made crepes stuffed with ham, broccoli, and cheese sauce.  Dessert was more crepes, these stuffed with Nutella and bananas.  My kids absolutely PIGGED OUT on pancakes, especially at dinner.  Especially Jocelyn, who managed to out-eat us all, she loved them so.  As I write this both kids are upstairs bathing and soaking off the Nutella and other pancake mess of the day.

My favorite part of the day, though, was thinking back to our recent holiday in Arizona.  I asked my Dad to teach me how to make crepes, and I'm so glad I did.  I made tons of them tonight, and each time I swirled the batter around the pan I thought of my Dad.  I can't wait to teach my children how to make crepes just like their Grandpa.

My favorite crepes recipe:

Makes about 20-24, 8-9 inch crepes.

2 Cups AP flour
4 eggs
1 Cup milk
1 Cup water
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 Tablespoons of melted butter

Mix all together, it helps to use a mixer and not a whisk as you add more lightness to the batter and get all the lumps out.  The batter should be fairly watery.  If after making the first crepe and you think the crepe is too thick, thin out the batter with a bit of water.

Turn your burner onto a medium-high.  Depending on the pan(s) you have it may only take a small amount of butter to season your pan on your first crepe.  Dip about a 1/2 cup amount of butter into your pan and swirl around until the batter stops moving but is all the way up to the curved part of the pan.  Just as the bottom is browned slightly turn your crepe and it will only need a few moments more before you can slide it out of the pan onto the cooling rack.  Like my Dad, I prefer to have two different pans going at once, or you could be standing for a long time making crepes.  Experiment until you have just the right amount of batter, etc, and you get a great crepe, as typically the first one is usually horrid.

Stuff with all kinds of combinations:
Ham and Cheese
Mushroom and Cheese
Nutella and Strawberries or other mixed berries
Nutella with Bananas
The Fischer family favorite is - Crispy bacon, sour cream, and a bit of maple syrup.
Chilli and Cheese
Lemon and sugar

February 12, 2013

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