German Style Oven Pancake

German Oven Pancake

Duck fat. There are not enough glowing words to describe my love and adoration for duck fat. It turned my two German-style Oven Pancakes into creations worthy of a photo shoot, much to the moaning of the hungry masses hovering near the stove, wanting to whisk it away to the breakfast table.

Rising several inches above the sides of the pan, the pancake’s bottom was nearly paper-thin, but yet strong enough to not tear when it easily slid out of the pan, thanks to duck fat. They released so easily from the glass pie pans, barely a speck of crust remained, unlike other times when I’ve used butter which tends to burn and hold onto crusts more easily.

Pork Sausage & Cherry Oven Pancake

Cherry Sausage Slice One of my favorite breakfast restaurants was Dutch-themed, specializing in oven pancakes called “pannekoekens”. Their egg-rich batter, nearly identical to that of popovers, gougeres, or Yorkshire pudding, was poured into pre-heated cast iron pans, baked at higher than normal temperatures. Together, moist batter and heat, created internal steam providing the lift and loft – same idea as popovers – the batter rising in a golden cloud above the pan.


Roulade Slice I own a lot of cookbooks. Coming from good German and Scandinavian stock, owning a lot of anything, especially something which I think my aluminum-foil-saving, plastic-wrap-washing, rubber-band-saving maternal grandmother would have considered frivolous, weighs on me as a source of guilt. I’m just glad it isn’t pride weighing down on me, because the Comes-From-Good-Stock Code of Ethics would require me to donate every cookbook to charity.

Lemon Souffle Pancakes

Every once in awhile, my thoughts wander, contemplating owning a B&B or little country inn. I’m enough of a realist, that the first “B” part of the fantasy, as in “bed”, means mountains of linen laundry and endless changing of sheets, not my idea of a good time. It’s the second “B”, the breakfast part, that keeps me dreaming. Whenever one of my latest experiments is approved by happy, contented faces gathered around my breakfast table, I find myself contemplating, “what if” and “if only”.

The irony is, I’d never have expected any of my dreams to have included the word “breakfast”, unless it had something to do with travel, Paris and croissants. For most of my life, breakfast was something to be avoided, having an aversion to boxed cereals and pancake mixes, frozen waffles, and grocery-store eggs, all of which left me feeling queasy and light-headed. A simple piece of dry toast, accompanied by a cup of hot tea, satisfied me for decades. It was when my husband and I stayed at a quaint and historic Maine B&B, that I was inspired to expand my breakfast horizon.

Oatmeal Souffle'

I can’t inform Daniel, 7, the night before I’m planning on making Oatmeal Souffle’ for breakfast. He becomes overly enthused, tapping me on the shoulder, arousing me from my 5am slumber demanding to know, “When, oh, when are you going to get up and make your fabulous Oatmeal Souffle’, Mommy? I can’t wait any longer!” Sarah, 12, has decided it’s time for her to memorize all the recipes of her favorite foods, and this recipe is at the top of her list. For both of them, this recipe is going to be one of those “memory foods” – soul foods – which I hope they’ll continue to make for their children.