Perfect pancakes plus five foolproof fillings
- Difficulty level:
Pancakes are much too good to be saved for Shrove Tuesday, and fillings can be sweet, savoury, simple or fancy.
Pancake wisdom varies from kitchen to kitchen but our fail-safe recipe will help you toss the perfect treat.
We’ve got five great filling recipes too, from a quintessential light lunch to an oh-so-impressive dinner party pud.
Ingredients (serves 6 people)
- 1 egg
- 100g plain flour
- 300ml milk
- pinch of salt
Ideally blend all the ingredients well in a blender, this will quickly make a thin but well mixed batter.
If you are mixing in a bowl, sift the flour and mix with the eggs and salt, beating well, then add the milk gradually so that it can be thoroughly mixed.
Heat a small amount of oil in a frying pan and then ladle a spoonful of the batter out to create a thin layer, cooking it through for just a minute or two on one side.
Ease around the sides as soon as they cook so that the pancake stays loose enough to make tossing easier.
If you don’t feel up to tossing your pancake, flip it over using a large spatula or slotted turner.
Cook through then slip out of the pan onto a plate.
The classic – lemon and sugar pancakes
Okay, this isn’t so much a recipe as a reminder. A pancake with lemon and sugar is pretty hard to beat.
Cheese and ham pancakes
Before flipping your pancake over, top it with a slice of ham, some grated cheese (whatever you have, but Gruyere is particularly good) and some chopped chives or spring onions. Let the cheese melt before folding your pancake.
Served with a simple green salad, this makes a perfect light lunch or supper.
Black Forest pancakes
Come over all 70s with this delicious and super-easy filling.
Warm a can of cherries before pouring onto pancakes you’ve anointed liberally with chocolate spread. Roll up your pancakes and serve with whipped cream and a few curls of grated chocolate if you’re feeling fancy.
Mushroom and spinach pancakes
Sweat a small, finely chopped onion in olive oil until softened but not brown (about five minutes). Then add some chopped mushrooms. When the mushrooms are cooked, remove from the heat and stir in some baby spinach to wilt. Season well.
If you like you can spread your pancakes with a little crème fraiche before topping with the mushroom and spinach mixture, but either way you’re in for a lush lunch!
Crèpes Suzette make an easy but impressive dinner party dessert, and are great served with vanilla ice cream.
Put 50g of sugar in a frying pan then place it on the heat until the sugar melts and then caramelises - don’t be tempted to stir the sugar, just let it melt gently, swirling the pan occasionally.
Add the zest and juice of 1 orange to the melted sugar. Be careful – it will bubble and splutter.
Add 50g of butter to the pan and bring everything to a simmer to create a syrupy sauce.
Slide your cooked and folded pancakes into the pan and leave them to simmer gently for a minute, turning once until completely drenched in the syrup.
If you’re feeling brave, you can now flambé the pancakes by drizzling over some orange liqueur, rum or brandy then carefully, and at arm's length, setting it alight.
Share your favourite pancake recipes
Have you got a recipe for a pancake filling that’s flipping fabulous? We’d love to hear from you.