MANY of us will be tucking into pancakes today, Shrove Tuesday, to mark the eve of Lent – or perhaps just because they’re delicious.
Whether you’re a traditionalist, opting for the age-old combination of lemon and sugar, or someone a little more adventurous, the mix of silky batter’s the perfect base for all manner of tasty treats.
Here’s a list of 10 of what I think work best on top of a pancake. They’re all sweet by the way, because savoury pancakes are as pointless as vegetarian bacon.
1 – Number one has to be lemon and sugar. There’s a reason it’s stood the test of time and remains so popular. The magic is in its simplicity – sour lemon juice marries sweet white sugar and something wonderful happens every time.
2 – Another popular go-to recipe’s bananas and chocolate. Nutella seems the most likely mixture, but melting down a bar of any description’s just as good.
3 – Caramel and pecans. We’re getting a bit more out there now, blending sweet caramel and nutty goodness. Any number of nut varieties work when presented with the sticky sauce (try it salted), but pecans are clearly up there with the best.
4 – Crêpes Suzette. We might be in England, eating pancakes, not crepes, but the classic’s a winner in whichever language you go for. Some recipes require the mixture to be above and beyond a regular batter, with added citrus zest and sugar (if you haven’t put it in already) but providing the sauce is good it doesn’t matter. Oranges, Cointreau, brandy or Grand Marnier with fresh orange segments and zest, orange juice, lemon juice, plus more sugar and butter is a vintage dream.
5 – Maple syrup is another foreign intervention, but it works for some. It’s easy too – a good choice when presented with little time.
6 – Berries and cream. Squeezing in one of your five a day, albeit lashed in cream, is a fanciful way to go. Creations can vary between using only strawberries, blueberries, or indeed a mix of any, and work wonderfully. Some concerned with the whole calorie thing might try reduced fat crème fraiche or even yoghurt instead.
7 – White chocolate might be too sweet for the more discerning palette but occasionally it has to happen. Slathering it on with raspberries is best and flaked almonds or coconut gives it an edge.
8 – Jam. That’s it – whatever flavour you like best. There’s something really quite remarkable about hot preserve.
9 – Although adding nuts to number two is a fine option anyway, some people aren’t fans of bananas so milk or dark chocolate with nuts is a notable alternative for many. Some might even add raisins too, paying homage to Cadbury’s fruit and nut of course.
10 – Apple and cinnamon’s a pretty decent choice. Heating up apples until the natural sugars run and adding the fragrant spice is just as good on pancakes as on porridge. This too works well with the addition of raisins, while walnuts also give it a pretty sophisticated dimension.
How will you be eating your pancakes today?
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