Five simple tips to make the perfect pancakes this Shrove Tuesday

If you plan to make pancakes, there are five simple tips you can follow to ensure that you end up with more food in people’s mouths than on the floor.

And if you are still in doubt, scroll down for a video showing how The Independent’s own chef and food writer Mark Hix does it best.

Tip one: Actually follow a recipe

It may seem simple, but a lot of people will be tempted to make their batter by filling a bowl with however much flour, eggs and milk they have left in the kitchen.

Don’t do this. For a simple basic batter recipe, there’s no better place to go than to Delia herself. Ms Smith recommends:

110g/4oz plain flour, sifted

Pinch of salt

2 eggs

200ml/7fl oz milk mixed with 75ml/3fl oz water

50g/2oz butter (for pan)

Tip Two: Use the right pan

A good pan will do most of the work for you, preventing the pancakes from sticking while maintaining a consistent level of heat.

If you are tempted to buy a cheap, thin non-stick pan for purpose then be prepared for it to be just that – they tend not to last (usefully) from one year to the next.

A good solid pan with a rounded join between the rim and base is probably best – and read the advice from the food writer and critic Xanthe Clay here on how to “season” it so it never needs washing up again.

Tip three: Don’t use too much butter

Basic, unsalted butter is the best thing to use when lubricating your pan – but bear in mind that it will quickly brown in the heat if you use too much. Try brushing a thin layer on quickly with kitchen paper – you could use a pastry brush with bristles, but it will take a battering (pun intended – don’t actually batter the brush itself).

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