With pancake day fast approaching it seems only right to start thinking about all of the options for getting a deliciously disgusting amount of pancakes into our lives. Pancakes aren’t just for February, but that doesn’t mean we can’t go a little over the top on pancake day. So whilst watching the opening match of this year’s Six Nations I was chowing down on these cheesy savoury pancakes.
What do you think of when you think when pancakes are mentioned? Are you in the lemon and sugar camp? Nutella smothered? Perhaps you have flashbacks to boxes of frozen crispy pancakes (different times)? For me, it tends to be brunch. Banana pancakes are one of my favourites – and for you guys it seems, by how regularly that recipe features in my most popular. But whilst we all have our favourites, or one that just resonates with us, if we’re going to go all-out for pancake day we need some dinner-ready options. *cheesy savoury pancakes: enter stage left*
There are many options here, many ways in which we could do something that’s less laden with sugar and more suitable for serving on the dinner table. True to form though, I decided the answer would be cheese.
Well, more accurately, cheese, ham, charred leeks and caramelised red onions. Because why not?
This dish also comes with options quite nicely too. The full recipe below takes about an hour all in (mainly because chopping and caramelising onions takes a while!), so if you’re doing this at a time when you’re getting in from work and looking to get dinner sorted in less time there are a couple of shortcuts. There’s the obvious one – buy your pancakes pre-made – and then too the option to switch out the caramelised onions for an onion chutney. Sure, both will alter the final outcome a little bit, but if it’s the difference between having pancakes for multiple courses and not, I’d say it’s not so bad.
More pancake recipes:
This recipe is perfect for pancake day dinner, before you go on to the sweeter pancakes. It’s full of cheese and deliciousness. This recipe is for two, but is easy to scale up if you have more mouths to feed.
for the pancakes:
- 2 eggs
- 100g plain flour
- 300ml milk
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 knob of butter
For the filling:
- 3-4 slices of honey roast ham (if using thinner sandwich ham, double)
- 2 leeks
- 100g mature cheddar
- 30g feta
- 1 red onion
- 1 tbsp olive oil or rapeseed oil
- 2tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
Start by caramelising the onions (obviously skip this part if using a chutney). Roughly chop your onion into chucks (not more than about 2cm long). heat the oil in a frying pan on a medium heat and when it’s hot, chuck in the onions. Let these gently cook as you do the pancakes. Once they are soft and translucent – about 15-20 minutes – add in the balsamic vinegar and sugar. Stir through and then leave for another five minutes. Decant into a dish to use later.
Next make your pancakes: put all the ingredients, except the butter, into a medium sized bowl and whisk them all together. Make sure you whisk all the little clusters of flour into submission, no one wants to find a lump of flour in a pancake.
Get a medium-sized frying pan on a medium heat. Grease using some of the butter. Once the pan is hot, pour in some of your batter and swirl around the pan so it is all covered, but not too thick – you want the pancakes relatively thin.
Cook until the bottom sets (you can move it around a little) and there are little air bubbles on the top. Flip the pancake over and cook for about 30 seconds on the (literal) flip side.
Remove from the pan and repeat the process, remember the time it takes will decrease as the pan gets hotter. If the pan gets dry after a few pancakes, add a little more butter.
Cut the leeks in half and then slice down the middle to give you four half leeks. To char them slightly, put cut-side down in a hot pan. I used the pan I had done the onions, to add more flavour. This will only take a minute or so.
Once everything is ready, put the oven on to about 180ºC. Lay a pancake out on a chopping board and add a spoonful of the caramelised onions (or chutney) to the middle, spread evenly across the pancake. Add a slice of ham on top, followed by a leek-half and then grate about a fifth of the mature cheddar over the top. Roll rightly and then put in an oven-proof dish. Repeat the process until your dish is full of pancake rolls – it’ll be three or four, depending on the size of your pancakes.
Grate the remaining mature cheddar over the top of the pancakes, and then crumble the feta on top of this. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until the cheese is bubbling.
Serve with a side salad for lunch, or some vegetables for dinner.