It's Shrove Tuesday next week so whether you like stacks of buttermilk pancakes dripping with maple syrup or more delicate thin, lacy crepes with lemon juice and sugar, I've got a few suggestions.
You probably have your own favourite family recipe but below you'll find a round-up of different pancakes I've made here at Portly HQ, plus a new one: ham and cheese stacks, a sort of pancake version of a croque monsieur.
These make a good brunch dish for anyone who's not fond of sweet pancakes (my husband). Add some wilted spinach if you want to give a nod towards health but we are talking about Mardi Gras, Fat Tuesday, after all.
Ham and Cheese Pancake Stacks (serves 4)
100g plain flour
1 1/2 tspn baking powder
1/2 tspn bicarbonate of soda
Pinch of salt
1 x 284 ml pot of buttermilk
25g butter, melted
Thinly sliced ham
Thinly sliced cheese (Cheddar or Emmental)
Cheese sauce, about 6-8 tbspn
A sprinkle of paprika
In a big bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, bicarb and salt. In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, melted butter and egg. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients and gently whisk them together until you have a thick batter.
Melt a little butter on a flat griddle or in a frying pan and drop tablespoons of the mixture into the pan, trying for a circular formation. Cook for about 3 minutes or until you see bubbles breaking the surface, which should mean the underside is now golden brown.
Flip them over and cook the other side for about 1 minute. Wrap in foil and keep warm in a low oven while you cook the rest. You should have around a dozen.
Heat the grill to medium. Put two-thirds of the pancakes in a lined grill pan and top with ham and cheese. Grill until the cheese has melted.
Stack two together and top with one of the reserved pancakes. Pour over a little cheese sauce and sprinkle lightly with paprika. I gave mine a quick blast with the blow torch to lightly brown the sauce, or you can pop it back under the grill for a minute or two.
You may also like:
Buttermilk Pancakes: the American classic
Strawberry and Vanilla Pancakes: as above but with knobs on
Pippa's Pancakes: crepes stuffed with spring vegetables
Blinis: little mouthfuls of loveliness
Chinese Pancakes with duck and plum sauce
Sweetcorn Fritters: another luscious US recipe
The Ones I Grew Up Eating: what I'd call a classic British pancake and the French would probably call a crepe.