German Pancake, also known as ‘Dutch Baby,’ is a puffed up pancake that is crispy on the outside, soft and dreamy inside; a real treat for breakfast, brunch, or even a late afternoon teatime dessert, or as us Iranians call it, “asrooneh.” My memory of this pancake goes back to many years ago when I first moved to the States. There was a little coffee shop off campus, which served a large selection of pancakes, anytime of the day or night! Their German pancake was my favorite. Unlike the other pancakes which were served with warm maple syrup, or other fruit syrups, this one was served with a sprinkle of confectioner’s sugar and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
I still remember the sweet anticipation while my friends and I sat at our table, sipped our coffee, talked about everything, and waited for their amazing German Pancake!
The pancake was served hot from the oven, in the same skillet that it was baked in. The server dusted the top generously with confectioner’s sugar and squeezed some fresh lemon juice on it. The crispy pancake was then folded, just until the two sides touched in the middle; next came another sprinkle of sugar and a squeeze of lemon!
This German pancake serves two and it may be served in the skillet for a casual breakfast. Also, it easily releases from a well-seasoned cast iron skillet, to be served on a platter. A variation of topping for this pancake is a drizzle of warm maple syrup, instead of the confectioner’s sugar and lemon juice; it is also delicious with fresh fruit and whipped cream.
The following pictures are to illustrate some highlights; please follow the printable recipe for the complete details.
Preheat the oven to 425 F. Bring the ingredients to room temperature by leaving them out for 15-20 minutes.
The German pancake is quick to prepare and a breeze to bake! No extraordinary skills are required to make it puff up so perfectly; there are no tricks to create its beautiful golden brown color. It simply looks amazing and it tastes exceptional using a few basic ingredients (eggs, flour, milk, one tablespoons of sugar, and a small amount of salt, vanilla, and nutmeg), a blender, a cast iron skillet, and a preheated oven. I always break the eggs into a bowl to avoid any shells in the batter. Add all of the batter ingredients, with the exception of butter, to the blender, and blend until the batter is smooth without any flour lumps. Stop once and scrape the sides, then continue blending until light and foamy.
Add the cubed unsalted butter to the skillet and place it in the preheated oven on the middle rack, just until the butter melts. Remove the skillet from the oven, add the prepared batter to the melted butter and place the skillet back in the oven. Bake for 20 minutes, until the pancake puffs up to a rich golden brown around the edges and light golden brown in the center. Reduce the temperature to 300 F without opening the oven door and continue baking for another 3-5 minutes.
Remove the skillet from the oven. Slide a heat-proof spatula under the German pancake and along the sides to release it from the skillet. Dust the top with confectioner’s sugar (powdered sugar) and squeeze some fresh lemon juice on top of the pancake. Fold the sides to meet in the center, and sprinkle with more sugar and fresh lemon juice. Serve hot with extra lemon slices and powdered sugar on the side. Please enjoy this recipe and make a comment to let me know what you think. Cheers dear friends!
Active prep time: 3 minutes
Bake time: 25 minutes
Best if ingredients are at room temperature
Preheated oven 425 F, center rack
You will need a 10-inch cast iron, or another heavy oven-proof skillet
- Ingredients for the batter:
- 3 large eggs, room temperature (break into a bowl)
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup milk, room temperature (I've used 1% milk)
- 1 TBSP granulated sugar
- Pinch of salt
- Pinch of nutmeg
- Pinch of vanilla powder, or ¼ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 4 TBSP unsalted butter (2 ounces = ¼ cup = ½ stick), cubed, room temperature
- Suggestions for the pancake toppings:
- A dusting of confectioner's (powdered) sugar & fresh squeezed lemon juice (1/2 to 1 fresh lemon)
- Maple syrup
- Fresh fruit & whipped cream
- Preheat oven to 425 F, center rack
- Add all the batter ingredients, except butter, to a blender. Blend until smooth and without flour lumps. Stop once and scrape the sides and blend again until light and foamy.
- Add 4 tablespoons butter to a 10-inch cast-iron skillet and place it in the oven.
- As soon as the butter melts, remove the skillet from the oven and pour the prepared batter in the skillet and place it back in the oven (don't stir)
- Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the pancake is puffed up, rich golden brown around the edges and light golden brown in the center. Without opening the oven door, reduce the temperature to 300 and bake for another 3-5 minutes.
- Remove the skillet from the oven; slide a heat-proof spatula under the pancake and along the sides to release it from the skillet.
- Sprinkle the top with confectioner's sugar. Squeeze some fresh lemon juice all over the pancake.
- Fold the two sides of the pancake to meet in the center. Sprinkle with additional powdered sugar and another generous squeeze of the lemon juice.
- Serve hot with a side of extra lemon slices and powdered sugar.
To season your cast iron skillet: Add a few drops of vegetable oil to the skillet. Use a cloth to rub a very thin layer of oil on the entire surface of the skillet: inside, outside, bottom, the handles. Heat the skillet upside down in a 350 F oven for one hour (place an aluminum foil in the lower rack to catch any possible drops of oil). Let the skillet cool inside the oven.
The recipe for this pancake has been adapted from https://cooking.nytimes.com/