Lemon Puff Pancake with Fresh Berries: easier done than said

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Did you ever hear of a Dutch Baby?

How about a Swedish Puff?

David Eyre’s Pancake?

All three of these titles refer to a tender, eggy, oversized pancake, as wonderful to eat as it is spectacular to look at – and fast/easy to make.

This particular Lemon Puff Pancake recipe is based on one printed over 40 years ago in The New York Times. Called David Eyre’s Pancake (Mr. Eyre, a Honolulu resident, had served it to Times writer Craig Claiborne at his home), it was the “most requested reprint” Times recipe ever run, up to that point.

And for good reason. A rather unprepossessing flour, milk, and egg batter is poured into a pan, and 20 minutes later emerges as a giant golden puff, awaiting a final anointing of lemon juice and sugar.

It’s delicious; it’s easy; and who cares if it settles back a bit from its glorious oven-fresh heights as it cools? Part popover, part crêpe, part pancake, it combines the best aspects of all three. We like to serve it on a lazy Sunday morning, garnished with fresh berries, Sunday paper (New York Times?) close at hand.

First, preheat the oven to 425°F. You want the oven good and hot, to encourage the pancake to rise to its full height.

Lightly grease a 9″ cast iron skillet, or 8″ round cake pan. The size of the pan matters here, so measure carefully. Too small, it’ll overflow. Too large, it won’t puff as high. If you’re using a cast iron skillet, it should measure 9″ across the top; its bottom diameter will be smaller.

Melt 1 tablespoon butter in the skillet; or melt 1 tablespoon butter, and pour it into the cake pan.

Did you know that by clicking anywhere on this block of pictures, you can enlarge them to full size? Go ahead, give it a try; it’ll work for any of our photos.

Whisk together the following:

1/3 cup (1 3/8 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon granulated sugar

In a separate bowl, whisk together the following:

1/4 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs

Whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until fairly smooth.

Add 1 tablespoon melted butter, and whisk again. A few small lumps are OK.

Pour the batter into the pan, atop the melted butter.

Bake the pancake for 15 minutes in the cast iron pan, 20 minutes in the cake pan, or until it’s puffed and golden, with deeper brown patches.

Remove the pancake from the oven, and sprinkle with 1/2 to 1 tablespoon lemon juice, then confectioners’ sugar.

Use more sugar than you’d think you need; since the pancake itself is basically unsweetened, and you’re adding lemon juice, be generous.

Sprinkle the pancake with berries, if desired. I always desire; they’re just so pretty, red raspberries or blackberries or blueberries on a golden pancake. Also tasty, of course.

Serve immediately.

This pancake serves two, as part of a larger breakfast (e.g., fruit salad, yogurt, etc.)

Or enjoy the entire thing yourself; it’s so light, you won’t feel like you’ve eaten a 9″ pancake!

Note: This recipe is easily doubled. If you don’t have more than one skillet, use a combination of skillet and cake pan; or simply use two 8″ round cake pans.

Also, if you have a large cast iron skillet – e.g., 11″ straight-sided, or 12″ with sloping sides – here’s the classic version of this recipe:

2 tablespoons butter, melted in the pan
1/2 cup (2 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
small pinch of nutmeg, optional
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs

Read, bake, and review (please) our recipe for Lemon Puff Pancake with Fresh Berries.

Print just the recipe.

PJ Hamel
About

PJ Hamel was born in Wisconsin, grew up in New England, and graduated from Brown University. She was a journalist in Massachusetts and Maine before joining the King Arthur Flour Company in 1990, where she's been ever since. Author or co-author of three King Arthur ...

comments

  1. "big mike"

    I make this all the time. I roll it up with perries in side. I also cook it in a glass 9″ pie dish. I bake two at a time. I have baked 4 at one time. You have to be fast getting them out of the oven on to plates.

    Reply
  2. k.g.mom

    Just had a dutch baby at the local pancake house! They described it as a cross between a crepe and a pancake. Made sense to me! I will definitely give this a try. Thanks!

    Reply
  3. glpruett

    I have made this basic recipe for ahem…many, many years! I first saw it printed in the “Woman’s Day” magazine in 1974. It was called “Apple Pancake Pie”, and was, of course, filled with apple slices sauted in butter with sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg added and cooked down while the pancake portion bakes. Yummy!

    I haven’t made it with any other fruits, but I’ve got some great strawberries in the fridge, and I think I hear them calling out to be added to this “Lemon Puff Pancake”! Thanks for the reminder of a great recipe which I don’t normally think of until fall rolls around!

    Yup, this is definitely a “four season” recipe – I’ve made it with apples, too. And blueberries. And strawberries, and sliced peaches. Bananas, too. Really, whatever’s handy and fresh – enjoy! PJH

    Reply
  4. krebsiebaby

    Over 50 years ago I was introduced to the German Pancake at the Ramada Inn, Love Field, Dallas, Texas. It was served with warm mandarin oranges, stewed apples and maple syrup. The waitress, seeing my lost look, asked if I would like her to fold it for me. Watching her carefully, I learned how to fold them. Much later I found a restaurant that served Dutch Babies on weekend mornings. This one was healthier in that the fillings were yogurt and fresh berries.

    I had found a recipe, but then lost it. From then on I just winged it. But I am most grateful to have a real recipe again.

    Thank you.

    Reply
  5. Lauri @ MyPinnedLife

    This looks really simple and really good. I don’t have a cast iron skillet, so it is good to know that you can use a 8 inch cake pan instead. That makes this easy breakfast totally doable for me!

    http://pinnedlife.blogspot.com/

    Lauri, did you pin it? Psyched! Thanks for sharing your blog link – PJH

    Reply
  6. Ellen Wright

    This looks wonderful – on my wish list, I would have this recipe also tried with gluten free flour and it would tell me that. Then I wouldn’t have to test it and if it fails, oh well. Y’know, us celiacs wish that we could just enjoy what everyone else has!!

    I hear you, Ellen. I’m doubting this would work with GF flour, as the rising part depends on the strength/structure of the flour/liquid matrix. I think it would taste perfectly fine; but wouldn’t rise and fall, though I could be wrong… Let us know if you try it and what happens, OK? PJH

    Reply
  7. dprap

    I want to make this on a vacation in a remote cabin where I have limited access to baking pans. The only cast Iron pan there is a 12 inch bottom diameter, 13 1/2 inch top diameter and 1 and 1/4 inch deep (pizza) pan. if I doubled the recipe would this be doable in this pan ??

    Thanks !!!
    I would try a 1 1/2 recipe just to be on the safe side. I think a double would exceed the capacity of the 13 inch pan. ~Amy

    Reply
  8. annhkmiller

    Mmmmmmmmmmm. Looks so good. Definitely have to try. I especially like that there are pictures to follow along. Could
    I use plums from our tree, or would they be too tart?
    You may use any fruit of your choice to top the pancakes :). ~Amy

    Reply
  9. Kay2

    My husband just made this recipe gluten-free for our Sunday morning breakfast. He doubled the recipe because we don’t have a small cast iron skillet but we do have 10-1/2 x 2-1/2 cast iron skillet. It came out perfect! He oiled the skillet beforehand with a tbsp. of olive oil, making sure to get it all the way up the sides.

    He substituted a mix of half almond flour and half cornstarch for the flour portion of this recipe.

    He had his with lemon juice and confectioner’s sugar, I had mine with cinnamon-sugar butter. Yummy!

    We now have half of one left in the skillet because we didn’t want to be pigs. Is it lunch time yet? :-)

    Terrific! Thanks for sharing your successful GF variation – Happy Baking! Irene @ KAF

    Reply
  10. Elizabeth

    I tried it with almond flour – it cooked and puffed up the same but tasted quite different
    Thanks for sharing your results! ~ MaryJane

    Reply

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