Wednesday, November 19, 2008

German Apple Pancake (Pannakuken)

If you are from the Fargo area, you probably remember the Pannakuken Restaurant. When they brought out a pannakuken, the waitresses would run from the kitchen shouting PANNAKUKEN!!! I never made it to the restaurant, but I've seen it imitated enough to feel as if I had been there. College was divided into two camps: People who would consider being a waitress and yelling PANNAKUKEN!!! and people who would NEVER consider working there. The debate was ongoing. I was part of the "would consider it" camp, and my roommate belongs to the "would never consider it" camp.

A few notes on the recipe:

The first time I made this recipe I liked it more then the second time I made it. I'd suggest making apple crisp instead. It's a better apple recipe. Pannakuken is very sweet. The recipe says it serves four, but I'd suggest serving 6-8 people. I'd also suggest serving it as the dessert part of your breakfast or as actual dessert. The pannakuken took longer to cook in my oven then the recipe states. That may just be my oven however. I didn't peel the apples. I have an apple tree and was over the idea of peeling by the time I made this recipe. Oops, my camera ran out of batteries before I took a picture with the powdered sugar sprinkled on the top. This recipe came from "Cooks Illustrated The New Best Recipe".


A 10-inch ovenproof skillet is necessary for this recipe; we highly recommend using a nonstick skillet for the sake of easy cleanup, but a regular skillet will work as well. You can also use a cast-iron pan; if you do, set the oven temperature to 425 degrees in step 1, and when cooking the apples in step 3, cook them only until just barely golden, about 6 minutes. Cast iron retains heat better than stainless steel, making the higher oven temperature unnecessary. If you prefer tart apples, use Granny Smiths; if you prefer sweet ones, use Braeburns. For serving, dust the apple pancake with confectioners' sugar and pass warm maple syrup or caramel sauce separately, if desired.


1/2 c flour

1 T sugar

1/2 tsp table salt

2 eggs

2/3 c half and half

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 T Butter

1 1/4 lb granny smith or baeburn apples (3 to 4 large apples), peeled, quartered, cored, and cut into 1/2 inch thick slices

1/4 c brown sugar

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp lemon juice

confectioners sugar for dusting

1. Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position; heat oven to 500 degrees.

2. Whisk to combine flour, granulated sugar, and salt in medium bowl. In second medium bowl, whisk eggs half-and-half, and vanilla until combined. Add liquid ingredients to dry and whisk until no lumps remains, about 20 seconds; set batter aside.

3. Heat butter in 10-inch ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until sizzling. Add apples, brown sugar and cinnamon; cook, stirring frequently with a heatproof rubber spatula, until apples are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Off heat, stir in lemon juice.

4. Working quickly, pour batter around the outside edge of the pan

and then over the apples. Place skillet in oven and immediately reduce oven temperature to 425 degrees; bake until pancake edges are brown and puffy and have risen above edges of skillet, about 18 minutes. Mine took much longer, but I think my oven temperature is a bit off.

5. Shout Pannakuken at the top of your lungs while running through the house.

6. Using oven mitts to protect hands, remove hot skillet from oven and loosen pancake edges with a heatproof spatula; invert pancake onto serving platter. Dust with confectioners' sugar, cut into wedges and serve.


Anonymous said...

Hi Lora ---

I've made this before from the Cook's Illustrated book, and I made yours yesterday. It came out rather dry. Looking afterwards, the other recipes I see ask for '1/2 cup' flour, instead of '1 1/2'. No problem if you like it this way, but thought I'd mention in case it was a typo.

Lora said...

I'm so sorry. I hate going through the trouble of cooking and having it not work. Thanks for letting me know. I REALLY appreciate it. Thanks so much. I fixed the typo.