If you love pancakes and haven’t dared to try cooking them because you think its going to be difficult without sight, then please don’t be defeated, it is possible to make them, if adequate care is taken while you’re cooking.
You don’t have to toss them, well you can if you are the adventurous type, but it isn’t essential, they’ll taste just as good if you don’t!
It won’t even matter if the pancakes break up a bit when you try to get them out of the pan, as once they are rolled up and covered in caster sugar and lemon juice, they are only going to be cut up before they’re eaten anyway!
Please get sighted help if you are at all worried about heating the butter, it will smell a bit hot and, after all, I wouldn’t want to be responsible for the cost of a major kitchen repaint either, when you’re attempting to scrape those pancakes you were trying to toss, from the ceiling!
Seriously though, please take care and work methodically.
For classic British Pancakes, to make 6 to 8 you will need:
- 4 oz, 110 g, plain flour.
- 1 large egg.
- half a pint, 10 fl.oz of milk.
- 2 oz, 50 g, butter.
- a tiny pinch of salt.
- the freshly squeezed juice of either 2 lemons or oranges and 2 to 3 oz of caster sugar to flavour.
- Set your oven to very low, most ovens have a warm setting.
- Fry your pancakes in a small, non-stick, 6 or 7 inch, 20 to 30 cm, frying pan.
- Warm a plate in your oven to keep the pancakes hot, and have several sheets of greaseproof paper at the ready to interleave between your pancakes to stop them sticking together.
- Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl.
- Break the egg into a small bowl to make sure that its fresh, then make a well in the centre of the flour and pour it in.
- Beat the egg and flour together with either a wooden spoon or an electric hand mixer.
- Gradually add the milk, beating the mixture to a smooth batter between additions.
- Heat a teaspoon of the butter in a small frying pan or omelet pan, on a medium heat, until it’s melted and very hot. This will only take about 20 seconds or so. As soon as you hear it clicking immediately remove it from the heat!
- Now, quickly and carefully add 3 tablespoons of batter to the pan, which will be just enough to give a thin coating.
- Use a palate knife to quickly spread it over the surface, put it straight back on a medium heat, but don’t stir or disturb the batter for about a minute. During this time you will hear it popping and clicking a little bit.
- Tap the surface with the flat blade of a fish slice and it will sound dull, and the batter will now be soft but set.
- Put the pan on your worktop again and, holding the pan’s handle firmly in one hand, push the end of the blade of the fish slice straight down vertically inside the rim of the pan, tilting it carefully forwards, working the flattened blade up underneath your pancake. Hopefully it won’t have stuck, and you should be able to lift it up slightly. Now, tilt the fish slice sideways so that the pancake flips over.
- Cook it for the same length of time, one minute, on the other side.
- Have a warm plate with a sheet of greaseproof paper ready so that you can tip the pancake on to it, cover it with another sheet of greaseproof, and Put it straight in to your oven.
- Melt another teaspoon of butter in the pan, measure out the batter and carry on cooking. stacking the pancakes with a sheet of greaseproof paper between them, continuing to keep them warm in the oven. .
- Just before serving, remove all the greaseproof paper, sprinkle each pancake with lemon and caster sugar, roll each one into a loose sausage and serve on warm plates.
Sit down, put something nice on the stereo or telly and enjoy them.
Remember that practice makes perfect, the second pancake always turns out better than the first.
If cooking them seems just too daunting, many of the major supermarkets sell their own ready-made traditional pancakes which come either plain so you can add your own fillings or ready flavoured. All you have to do is remove the packaging, put them on to a plate and warm them through in the microwave for a minute or so, it really couldn’t be easier.
I can particularly recommend, Marks & Spencer and Tesco. Well I did have to do a bit of road testing, purely on your behalf you understand.