We have pancakes nearly every weekend without fail. They are something of a ritual in our house, ever since the girls were big enough to hold a whisk. I don't make them, they are in fact The Editor's speciality and he takes his responsibilities very seriously indeed. Once a year there is the crepe-style pancake on Shrove Tuesday - served with sugar and a generous squeeze of lemon juice. Most weekends the silver dollar American style pancake make an appearance, served with lashings of maple syrup and whatever fruit looks nice in the market or some very crispy bacon. But today was the day that the ricotta pancake was taste driven, and it was good!
This recipe was from one of my favourite cookbooks, the lovely Rose Bakery's 'Breakfast, Lunch, Tea.' We had breakfast at the Rose Bakery in Paris once before, I had the Oeuf a la coque avec 'toast marmite'(boiled eggs and marmite soilders, yum!). It's a lovely book for bakes and scones but be warned, the serving quantities can be misleading. This recipe was to serve eight - it fed two adults and two toddlers just about, maybe the French are not as hungry as us!
200g ricotta cheese
4 eggs, separated
150g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
50g melted butter
A little butter for cooking
Syrup and/or fruit
1. Beat together the ricotta, milk & egg yolks until smooth. Then add the melted butter.
2. In another bowl, sift the dry ingredients together. Add the ricotta mixture to the dry ingredients and stir very lightly.
3. Beat the egg whites until they are stiff and fold them into the batter. (Careful now - don't over mix and knock out all the fluffiness)
4. Melt a little butter in a large frying pan, pour in 3-4 tablespoons of the batter and cook over a medium heat until the pancakes are golden underneath. Flip to the other side and cook for about another minute until the pancakes are cooked through. Continue until all the batter is used up, adding more butter to the pan as needed.
Serve hot with fresh seasonal fruit and maple syrup or a dollop of creme fraiche. The Rose Bakery recommends a red-fruit compote, but we had some lovely blueberries, raspberries and strawberries so we used those.
We also used ricotta cheese from a tub instead of fresh Italian ricotta, as they use at the Rose Bakery. The pancakes did not seem to suffer from this slight change as these were still so very light, mallowy in the centre without being undercooked, and crispy on the outside.