I have a few fashion loving friends who get this fiendish gleam in their eyes when they’re talking clothes. To them, the names of the designers on Gilt.com actually mean something. I don’t like to look like too much of a soccer mom, but I’ll only get behind a fashion trend if it’s comfortable (jeggings anyone?). But when it comes to cooking stores, that’s when I get that dangerous glint in my eyes. Those burnished copper pots and shiny appliances are pretty much impossible to resist. I’ve been known to fall into a frenzy and emerge with items that are most definitely not necessities.
Last year, I fell for an ebelskiver pan. It’s a nonstick pan with seven shallow rounded wells for making Norwegian pancakes. This being Williams Sonoma, it came with a very convenient ebelskiver pancake mix which we made immediately that weekend.
The pancakes were a revelation, completely validating my impulsive purchase. They were light and puffy, little sweet clouds that melted in the mouth. We filled them with Nutella and various jams. And we repeated the breakfast for the next few weekends, all with the same happy food coma joyful weekend family nap outcome.
But soon the pancake mix ran out, and the pan began to gather dust in the cabinet. It seemed foolish to trek out to Williams Sonoma to acquire another $10 jar of pancake mix. Then, thanks to the magic of Google, I learned that the ebelskiver recipe (also known as aebelskiver) is very easy and just as marvelous as the mix version.
There are some recipes that call for whipping up egg whites, but I would never take the time to do that on a Saturday morning. The recipe below is something you can easily assemble before you’ve had your first cup of coffee. But you’ll need an Ebelskiver pan to make it, that is, if you dare to enter the dangerous realm of kitchen equipment retail.
Aebelskivers/Ebelskivers… Delicious Pancake Puffs
Yield: Makes 12 or 13 pancake puffs
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons sugar
2 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1 Cup 2% milk
2 tablespoons melted butter
- In a bowl, mix flour with sugar, baking powder, and salt. In a small bowl, beat egg to blend with milk, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons butter. Add liquids to dry ingredients and stir until just evenly moistened. Don’t overstir, I can’t stress this enough, or your puffs will be mini-boulders.
- Place an aebleskiver pan over medium-low heat. When pan is hot enough to make a drop of water sizzle, brush pancake cups lightly with vegetable oil and fill each to slightly below the rim with batter.
- In 1 to 2 minutes, thin crusts will form on bottoms of balls. Peek under with the tip of a knife to make sure. The center of the pancake will still be very wet. Pierce the crust with a slender wood skewer and gently pull shell to rotate the pancake ball until about half the cooked portion is above the cup rim and uncooked batter flows down into cup.
- Cook until crust on bottom of ball is again firm enough to pierce, about another minute, then rotate ball with skewer until the ridge formed as the pancake first cooked is on top.
- Cook, turning occasionally with skewer, until balls are evenly browned and no longer moist in the center, another 4 to 5 minutes. Check by piercing center of last pancake ball added to pan with skewer to see if it comes out clean, or by breaking the ball open slightly. If you’re worried your balls are turning too brown, turn the heat down immediately. Better be safe than sorry and cook them a little longer than have them get burned.
- Lift cooked balls from pan. Make a little hole in the middle and fill with the topping of your choice (Nutella, apple sauce, jams, lemon curd). Alternatively, you can just dip them in powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar. Serve hot.
- Repeat to cook remaining batter.