Friday, 8 February 2013

Novelty Pancakes for Pancake Day

Phew!  It's been a long day of pancake making but I am really pleased with the results.  Last year I couldn't cook an average pancake and this year I have produced something I can be proud of...

Last year I had the same big ideas in my head, but just couldn't translate that to the pan. My pancakes stuck and ripped at the first attempt; I gave up disheartened and deflated.

This year Lakeland sent me a griddle pan and some squeezy bottles to review.  In return I offered to provide my honest opinion on the products and blog about my attempt to produce some novelty pancakes.  I didn't believe I could possibly be feeling as satisfied as I am writing this blog post, but I will let you see the results for yourself.....

Why are we making pancakes anyway?

Shrove Tuesday is just around the corner and it's interesting to know how Shrove Tuesday originated.  

Taken from Wiki: Shrove Tuesday (also known as Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras, Pancake Tuesday and Pancake Day) is the day preceding Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent. Shrove Tuesday is determined by Easter; its date changes annually.

The expression "Shrove Tuesday" comes from the word shrive, meaning "confess."[1]Related popular practices are associated with celebrations before the fasting and religious obligations associated with the penitential season of Lent. The term Mardi gras is French for Fat Tuesday, referring to the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season, which begins on Ash Wednesday.

I used the following recipe for my pancakes:
  • 225g / 8 oz plain flour or all-purpose flour
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 large, fresh eggs
  • 600ml / 2½ cups/ milk
  • 2 tsp melted butter plus melted butter for cooking
This was easily mixed together and I knew as soon as the first lot of batter hit the griddle pan that this pancake making session was going to be a success.

The Swift Flat Griddle Pan costs £52.99 and is worth every penny.  The weightiness of the pan immediately made it feel an item of quality and the fact that not one of my pancakes stuck to the pan, speaks volumes about the abilities of the non-stick coating.  It works on all hobs including induction and is perfect for any novice pancake makers. If I can achieve what I have on this pan on my first attempt, I feel inspired as to what else I can create using it. It's heavy gauge construction allows the heat to be evenly distributed so that everything cooks evenly and the handles made moving the pancakes a breeze.

The options for using the pan are endless as it can be used for welsh cakes, pizzas, cooked breakfasts and even steaks. 

The next essential for novelty pancake making is squeezy bottles.  They are available in packs of two and cost just £3.39.  If you want to be able to do the more complicated pancakes that feature further down this page then this is what you need.  I loved the speed that the batter came out of the holes of these bottles as it was just the right medium to be able to draw on the pancake designs.  They were easy to clean out afterwards too.

My first pancake I made was this lovely Sunshine pancake.

This was made by making an average sized pancake and then chopping up lots of strawberries.  Strawberries have to be laid down in an alternate upside/downside pattern.  I chopped bananas for the eyes and used a blueberry for the nose.  I used chocolate sauce to add detail.

 He was gobbled up soon after this!

Next we have a Mr Potato Head pancake.

This was made by making an average sized pancake and then using blueberries, aerosol cream, oranges and strawberries for decoration.

He was a big hit with my son!

 The noughts and crosses design needed to be drawn on the pan using the squirty bottles.

My first complex pancake.  The design had to be drawn on the pan using the squeezy bottles.  Chocolate chips were used for the eyes.

 Little dog!

 I'm very proud of my bacon and egg pancakes.  These were achieved by adding red and orange food colouring to the batter mix.  

Spaghetti and meatballs.

And lastly a unicorn.

It's amazing what the right tools can do, a good pan and some squirty bottles and you will be able to achieve anything!  

For more information on the products please visit and have a lovely Pancake Day!

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