For most Americans nothing beats a classic sweet and fluffy pancake for breakfast. But if you want to look deeper you will find a whole new world of pancakes out there.
Last year my daughter had a project on European cities so we were doing a research on the Internet. That morning we had pancakes for breakfast and, just for fun, we started looking for pancakes across Europe. Then this expanded to pancakes all over the planet.
We found some interesting easy and simple pancake recipes that are worth trying. If you are one of those cooks that love experimenting in the kitchen, you can find your favorite new pancake recipe on MyGreatRecipes.
Pancakes Are All the Same. Or, Are They?
We wondered if pancakes in other cultures were the same as ours. Well, they aren’t. Pancakes are one of the oldest meals humans prepared. That is why there are so many variations of pancakes: from delicate to fluffy, from soft to crunchy, with different toppings and fillings.
Before you rush into the kitchen be aware of the main differences between our pancakes and others:
Some pancake recipes include water instead or as an addition to the basic milk and eggs mixture in their liquid base. Many of them are thinner that you are used to. While our pancakes use regular or whole wheat flour, others may use different grains, like ground corn or rice, or even potatoes. A few variations use yeast to make them fluffier, whereas other sour pancakes are left to ferment. There are also differences in the way of cooking. Some pancakes don’t require flipping, they are cooked only on one side. Others are cooked in an oven.
Interested? Let’s explore.
1.French Connection Pancake
Crêpes are made of a simple mixture made of flour, milk, eggs and sugar, only they are very thin and bigger than our pancakes. They are folded and filled usually with sweet fillings, like chocolate cream or fruit, but they can be filled with savory fillings, like cheese, eggs, meat or vegetables as well.
The Italian crêpe is called crespelle. It is usually made of chestnut flour and filled with savory fillings such as cheese, vegetbles or meat.
The savory Italian recipe, farinata, is made of chick pea flour and water, with a little bit of olive oil and baked in a pan.
The English recipe is made of flour, milk and eggs. They are thin and their special feature is the lemon juice and sugar put on top.
The Drop scones are very similar to the American pancakes in appearance. They are eaten with spread jam or butter.
German pancakes are called pfannkuchen or eirekuchen, depending on which part of Germany you are in. The batter is more egg-based and they are usually served with fruity fillings like jams, compotes or applesauce.
Known as pannenkoeken or Dutch baby, the Dutch pancake recipe is based on the German one. The main difference is that the Dutch variant is baked in an oven. When it is done the middle of the pancake is soft and creamy, whereas the ends are crispy. You can fill it with fruit and put sugar on top.
Kaiserschmarrn is a caramelized pancake cut in pieces which can be combined with different sweet things, for example fruit slices or nuts.
Pannukakku, like the Dutch baby, is also made in an oven. Fins like to put vanilla in the batter and eat it with sweet things, like sugar, fruit, jam or cream.
The raggamunks are made of potato and served usually with pork.
The Russian oladies are small and thick, made with yogurt or soured milk. There are also the blini, which are made with yeast and are really fluffy. Their mini version is usually served with caviar or salmon. The blintz are thinner and can be wrapped and filled in.
Naleśniki are a version of the Russian blini or blintz filled with cheese.
Tiganites are thin pancakes usually eaten with yoghurt or honey with a twist of cinnamon.
Some of the Balkan countries, like Bulgaria or Serbia, make these thin neutral-testing pancakes, called palachinkas, which can be eaten with both sweet and savory fillings, like sugar, jam or cream cheese.
I haven’t made all of them, but from those that I have tried I can say that the Dutch babe is really easy and fast. When it comes to the best tasting pancake, I recommend the Austrian one.