Did you know that Shrove Tuesday is the feast before Lent?
Many years ago, during Lent (the time when people traditionally gave up eating certain foods for the 40-day fast), people were not allowed to eat animal products such as eggs and milk. Being resourceful, those who didn’t want these ingredients to go to waste, mixed them with flour into a batter and cooked stacks of pancakes to eat on Shrove Tuesday. Yummy.
How to make a thin batter
115 grams (4oz ) plain flour
1 large egg
Quarter teaspoon salt
Half a pint of milk
Sieve flour and salt together in a mixing bowl and make a ‘well’ in the centre. Break the egg into the ‘well’. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the egg by drawing the flour from around the sides. Gradually add just enough milk to incorporate all the flour and make a thick paste. Beat to remove lumps. Stir in the rest of the milk, a little at a time. Beat or whisk the batter thoroughly until small air bubbles appear over the surface (about five minutes).
- Heat enough fat (lard preferably) to cover the bottom of a medium-size frying pan thinly and make sure the fat is hot.
- Pour in the batter to coat the pan thinly, about half a cup is usually enough.
- Cook on a medium heat until the underneath is gold and the top is set (about a minute, but often longer if you have hungry mouths waiting – not sure why). I often turn the heat up (naughty) to hurry everything along!
- Now comes the tricky bit. The best way to toss a pancake after years of practise is to first check it is cooked underneath and is not stuck to the pan. You may have to be patient. Pancakes when cooked properly should lift off the pan easily, but if one needs a bit of help to come free, run a spatula around the edges and shake the pan gently. When it is free from the base, remove the pan from the heat and hold the pan downwards at an angle. Carefully shake the pancake towards the edge of the pan and when you feel it has gone far enough, be brave and toss it over so that it returns to the pan cooked side up. If it folds on itself, this usually happens if you are hesitant with the toss, quickly use the spatula to separate the fold and resume cooking.
- After another 30 seconds or so, the pancake should be cooked. Tip it onto a plate, add a bit more fat to the pan, which should still be nice and hot and start over again.
- To serve your pancake: sprinkle with sugar and add a few squirts of fresh lemon juice to your taste. Roll up the pancake and shake a little more sugar over the top. Grab a knife and fork, cut into mouth-size pieces and indulge yourself.
- Other topping ideas: juice of an orange, chocolate sauce, ice cream, grated cheese (can be included in the cooking stage) and tomato sauce, or whatever takes your fancy.
Please share post:
Follow us on