Making perfect pancakes can take a bit of practice, but trust us when we say that it's like riding a bike: once you've got it, you'll never get it wrong again.
Make them as a quick Sunday brunch, save the mixture for a fortifying weekday breakfast (the kids will thank you), eat them with savoury fillings during the week – or just perfect the recipe for Pancake Day.
By the way, this method is for traditional, thin pancakes (like you'd have in Europe) and serves two. American-style pancakes are different and require a lot more sugar, less milk, and more (self-raising) flour. And while we're fans of those pancakes, we think these are tastier (and healthier, depending on the topping you choose).
For more recipes, see our dedicated hub.
How to make pancakes step-by-step
You will need:
- Large eggs, two
- Plain flour, sifted, 250 grams
- Milk, 500ml
- Caster sugar, to decorate if wanted
- Melted butter, two teaspoons
- More butter, for greasing the frying pan
- A non-stick shallow frying pan
1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs with the flour to create a stiff paste.
2. Add the milk little by little, gently folding it in and then beating to achieve a smooth batter. Doing so really gradually will ensure a lump-free batter. If you want to cut down on fat, you can go half and half on milk and lukewarm water instead.
3. Add the melted butter at the end. Again, you can leave this step out to cut down on fat, but it does improve the taste. You should get the consistency of a thin yoghurt: easy to pour, but not too runny.
4. Preheat the frying pan with a wedge of butter. It's important to get the pan quite hot, but make sure the butter does not go brown.
5. Pour half a ladle of the pancake batter into a hot pan with a thin layer of melted butter (be careful not to burn it) and spread the mixture evenly. Spreading it all over the pan will help you achieve a thinner pancake. It's likely that the first pancake will absorb a lot of the butter and will turn out too oily. This is normal: discard the first pancake or give it to anyone who positively likes it like this; the others should have a dryer texture. Keep adding tiny bits of butter if the pan becomes too dry.
6. To know when to flip your pancake, keep watching the surface. When holes have appeared throughout, and the mixture on top is no longer runny, you're safe to flip. Once flipped, it'll only need 20 to 30 seconds to seal.
If your pancakes keep burning on the bottom before they've cooked through, you are pouring too much batter per pancake. Experiment and you'll get it right eventually.
Serve with lemon and sugar, or any other topping of your choice. We like plenty of fresh fruit, but are big fans of maple syrup and bananas, too.