A Perthshire bakery has launched its own pancake batter and guide to help you get the most out of Pancake Day.
The wait is over and Shrove Tuesday is finally upon us, meaning pancake fans up and down the country will be delving in to their homemade creations this evening.
Food and drink businesses across Scotland are also pulling out the stops, with some offering up their own creations to your doorstep, such as The West House in Dundee.
Another business using this day to show off their amazing pancake-making skills is Aberfeldy-based Breadalbane Bakery, which recently launched its own pancake mix in a bottle that allows people to make perfect pancakes every time in their own kitchens.
David Curston, one of the bakers at Breadalbane Bakery, said that the secret to a successful pancake is all in the cooking.
He said: “For me, I would say the way you cook the pancake is the secret to success, more so than the batter itself. But that’s just because I like a nice stodgy pancake, which I prefer to be underbaked a little bit. So, for me, it’s all about how I fry it.
“We decided to release our own batter, mainly because during the first lockdown, we made our own kids packs. We did a biscuit one and were making doughs. It was a case of people taking it home, cutting the raw dough out with the kids and popping them in the oven. It’s all about community and doing something to help out parents a bit and making it easy and simple, so that it’s accessible to everybody.
“We’ve kept our pancake batter really simple. It’s our family recipe that my mum has used since she was a child, and we’ve always used it, too. It’s the normal four ingredients, though normally you’d use fresh egg but we have replaced that with egg powder and the same with the milk, which we’ve replaced with milk powder. All you’ve got to do is add water.
“It’s literally just four ingredients – flour, salt, egg and milk. It’s also the exact same recipe that we use for Yorkshire puddings, you just have to treat it differently when cooking.”
Batter is also important when it comes to having a successful Shrove Tuesday, though David says it’s more about having fun.
“Letting your batter rest, giving a chance for the gluten to relax and to absorb as much water as possible, which gets rid of all the lumps and everything else,” he said.
“Then it’s just about having fun, and that might sound really lame, but pancakes are a fun thing. It’s something to do with your family and that’s what I remember from when I was a kid – on Pancake Day we’d all have a go and it didn’t matter if they turned out badly. It was a fun family thing to do and that’s for me what it’s about, not the product itself.”
But how does David like to eat his pancakes? Does he opt for sweet or does go for savoury?
He continued: “We tend to go sweet with our pancakes. I have had savoury ones in the past, with spinach and ricotta, or ham and cheese. But for us, we’re all about the standard lemon and sugar and then maybe some Nutella and strawberries, although lately we’ve been doing some with the Biscoff biscuit spread and bananas. It’s a pretty good combination.”
With their homemade batter only available from their store in Perthshire, the bakery is hoping to roll out similar products in the future, with the view also to be able to deliver further afield.
David added: “With lockdown, we’re just trying to make things easier and more accessible for everybody. We are looking at doing a range of our own mixes, such as a simple vanilla sponge mix that you can use for birthday cakes or cupcakes. To then doing a cookie recipe one etc, just to make baking easy for people at home. The pancake batter, like the others, is something we are looking at having all year round.
“They’re only available in the store at the moment, but we are working on a website and trying to get our products to a wider audience because we’ve got so many customers and holiday-makers from outwith the town that come and see us every year but they’re all stuck at home at the moment. They’ve been getting in touch with us to try and find out if we can post things.
“Hopefully in the next few months, we’ll have something available for everybody.”
David’s step-by-step guide to perfecting your pancakes
- Grab everything you need: a frying pan, a spatula or palette knife, water, a jug, some oil or butter, and pancake mix.
- Add 450ml of water to the pancake mix. Tip: it can help to loosen the mix first by giving the bottle a good shake.
- Give it a good shake!
- Make sure the lid is on properly…
- Add another 100ml of water.
- Then give the mix another good shake for about five minutes, making sure there are no lumps. This is a great step for the kids to get involved.
- Heat your pan on a medium heat, and coat with a thin layer of oil or butter (not too much). Then, pour in some of your mix whilst tipping the pan, to cover the whole base. Don’t make them too thick.
- Cook until the tip surface has a matte finish, then flip! You can flip them in the pan, or be safe and flip them with the spatula. Cook on the other side for 30 seconds to one minute, then serve.
- We like to serve ours with sweet fillings, such as lemon, sugar, Nutella, Biscoff or syrup. But as the recipe doesn’t contain sugar, it can also be used for savoury fillings like cheese, tuna and tomato.
For more on Shrove Tuesday…