Before becoming deeply entrenched in my 30s, it seemed as though I was able to eat many a breakfast comprised of an innumerable amount things, in mildly shocking quantities, that now make me feel like I am on the verge of suffering some type of major medical emergency. A rare treat of pancakes is now paired up with something protein heavy, so as to avoid making my pancreas revolt and team up with my kidneys to enact some sort of diabolical punishment. French toast is served with fruit, sans syrup, and probably arrives in a singular number with a nice egg or soy sausage (don’t judge) on the side. In short, I no longer have the ability to eat like a teenage girl at a sleepover party, which makes sense, considering the fact that I am well out of my teen years and I haven’t been able to stay up past midnight since I was about 28. So.
Rather than mourn the loss of sugary breakfasts of my past, I have found life to take a much more pleasant turn by simply amending former decadence into something a bit more appropriate for a person in her mid-30s. While still certainly remaining a breakfast treat, a tall and delightfully puffed up German pancake, piled with fresh fruit, spritzed with lemon, and, if you wish, dotted with just a light sprinkling of powdered sugar, never seems to have the same after effects as downing a pool of maple syrup.
Sure, you’re still eating white flour and butter when you eat this pancake, but this delivery system arrives a bit more gently, and has the added benefit of providing a nice sense of fullness without an accompanying side of impending doom.
In what I am sure is some sort of German pancake heresy, I have also, over many years of making German pancakes, discovered that I much prefer a thick and custardy German pancake to a thin and delicate one. Making a thicker German pancake involves nothing more than baking the pancake in a dish that is smaller than one might think appropriate for a pancake of this sort. The tighter the quarters in the baking dish, the thicker the pancake, and the thicker the pancake, the more delightfully gratified you feel when you eat it. It’s enough to convince the former you that the current you still knows how to indulge.
Deep Dish German Pancake
German pancake, Dutch baby, or pannekoek, this breakfast treat goes by as many names as it has specific recipes. This particular recipe, designed to be doubled, tripled, and multiplied into infinity, is low on butter and completely devoid of refined sugar. Not that you’d ever miss it. This is still a delicious breakfast treat that is as lovely to look at as it is enjoyable to eat.
This is a base recipe for 1 serving. The recipe is meant to be multiplied by the number of people you will be feeding. If making a small serving, you will obviously need to bake this in a smaller dish. For the large German pancake pictured above, I multiplied the recipe by 5 and used a 2.5-inch deep, 10-inch by 7-inch dish.
¼ cup flour
¼ cup milk
1 teaspoon butter
Preheat oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit.
When the oven has preheated, place butter in baking dish and place dish in the oven.
Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender. Blend until just smooth.
When butter has melted, remove the baking dish from the oven, pour in the pancake batter, and return dish to the oven. Bake for 12 to 18 minutes, depending on the size of your pancake, until pancake has puffed up, turned golden, and the center appears just firm. Pancake will begin to deflate almost immediately after being removed from the oven, so serve as soon as possible.
Top with freshly squeezed lemon juice, a light sprinkling of powdered sugar, and fresh fruit.