German apple pancake

German apple pancake

The box of Jonagold apples in our basement finally gave up the ghost (i.e. was dumped unceremoniously into the compost bin) but I did manage to pull out two survivors to make a German apple pancake. This is one of those recipes my family’s been making forever, out of the original Vegetarian Epicure – the one with all the butter and cream and marijuana references. It’s the same thing as “Dutch babies” – basically a big  popover, cooked in butter and served with hot cinnamony apple slices.

The batter is very quick to prepare: just 3/4 cup of milk, 3/4 cup white flour, 3 eggs and a bit of salt all whisked together, then poured into a hot cast iron skillet in which you’ve melted a tablespoon of butter. Pop the pan into a 450° oven for 15 minutes, then turn the heat down to 350° and leave it for another 10 minutes or so. It always comes out a little different, but it usually poofs up high along the edges while the center stays thin and custardy with a crisp edge. This one poofed very nicely:

fresh out of the oven
the pancake has risen

The approach I usually use for the apples is to slice them up and lay them in a pan with some hot butter. Once they’ve browned a little I sprinkle on some cinnamon sugar, so they’re spicy but not very sweet. These apples were old and a little mealy, but still had great flavor.

sauteed cinnamon apples

To serve, cut the pancake into pieces (one recipe serves two nicely, or four if you’ve made sausage as well), and heap with the cooked apples. Tear off pieces of crisp pancake and wrap around apple slices – delish.

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