Are you Swedish and feeling homesick? Maybe not, but you might have some Swedish guests coming over to visit you and want to make them feel at home, or you simply like to try new things or explore different cultures and their way of life.
We can go on enumerating almost a hundred reasons, but the bottom line is that any reason you might have is good enough to learn how to make Swedish pancakes!
A Few Facts About Swedish Pancakes
Swedish pancakes are actually called pannkakor, in Sweden of course. Pannkakors have been made in that part of the world ever since the middle ages (or even earlier). The first written mentioning of this dish appears in the early 1400s.
Many European people lay their claim on these flat pancakes. However, here in America, most refer to them as Swedish pancakes due to their long and well-proven tradition in this country.
Although many believe Swedes have made pancakes since ancient time, one thing is certain- it was not easy to make these pancakes that long ago since there were no non-stick frying pans, nor the flipping utensils. Many housewives would, therefore, burn their fingers in the process. For this reason, their popularity exploded only when wood stoves and frying pans were invented.
Nowadays, pancakes are as popular as ever before in this far-away land. Even today, Swedes honor this tradition and eat pancakes every Thursday, usually after a pea soup (another traditional Swedish dish). Otherwise, they are usually served as breakfast.
Most of the time, these pancakes are eaten as a dessert with powdered sugar, lingonberries (or other fresh berries), jam, and whipped cream. However, eating them with cheese and ham is also a very common occurrence.
If you visit Sweden and take a few walks around their busy streets, you are sure to discover pancake stands which sell fresh pancakes right there on the street. It is really a kind of national pride! We bet that all you Swedes who are reading this also feel at least a bit proud, and after we have tasted your pancakes, we thoroughly agree that you should.
How To Prepare Swedish Pancakes Successfully
We bet that you already started mouthwatering and cannot wait to get your hands on our Swedish pancake recipe and start flipping them. For this reason, we will get down to the business right away.
What do you need to prepare Swedish pancakes successfully: (about twenty of them)
- A large bowl
- A whisk
- A ladle
- A spatula (or a turner)
- A plate
- 3 cups of milk
- 1 cup of flour
- 3 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons of sugar
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- Butter (leave it half opened for convenience)
- Frying pan (preferably non-stick one)
The preparation process is fairly easy and as follows:
1. Pour the milk into the large bowl, add the eggs and hand whisk until the mixture becomes unified.
2. Next, add the flour and whisk until there are no lumps (you can also sieve the flour into the mixture as that will minimize the number of lumps)
3. Add sugar, and salt and whisk until the batter becomes smooth. It will appear runny, do not worry it should be that way!
4. Turn your stove to medium heat and heat your non-stick frying pan.
5. Use butter to oil the frying pan holding it half-open in the packaging foil.
6. Using a ladle pour the batter into the frying pan. The batter should only just cover the surface of the pan, so do not pour too much as Swedish pancakes are supposed to be thin (unlike the American ones)
7. Fry your pancake until it starts to bubble on the surface and its edges lift from the pan. To make sure your pancake is ready to be turned over check the underside to see if it has browned.
8. Now it is time to flip your pancake. If you have done everything right, it should not be a hard task. Namely, you just need to use the spatula and get it under your pancake and then flip! You can also try to flip your pancakes tossing them in the air, but we do not recommend this method to beginners as this hot piece of dough might end up burning you!
9. When you flip your pancake, let it fry for a minute or so or until that other side browns as well.
10. Take out the Swedish pancake onto the warmed plate. If you are not going to eat the pancakes immediately, you can keep the plate in the luke-warm oven until you finish frying all the pancakes.
11. Repeat the process until you spend all the batter. Be sure to oil the frying pan with butter each time as it not only prevents pancakes from sticking but also adds to the genuine taste.
12. It is best to serve Swedish pancakes warm.
As we have already mentioned, Swedish pancakes should be served and eaten warm. If you need to prepare them ahead of time for whatever reason, you can fry them, cover them with foil, refrigerate them and microwave them immediately before you intend to eat them.
As far as the filling is concerned, it will have to do with your personal taste the most. If you want to stay loyal to tradition though, you should spread a bit of butter onto them, sprinkle some powdered sugar and add fresh lingonberries (if you can find them in your store!).
We also like combining Swedish pancakes with cinnamon sugar or whipped cream. If you are a chocolate addict, you can try spreading Nutella which is sure to satisfy your addiction. Any jam will do too. Ice-cream can be a great summer addition as well.
Many Americans use maple syrup to top off their Swedish pancakes, but we bet that Swedes would frown at that. Maple syrup is too liquid and ruins the fluffy texture of the Swedish pancakes.
Whatever combination you choose, you are sure to enjoy!
We are not Swedish, but we tried to give a genuine recipe that will satisfy the highest Swedish criteria. There are surely a lot of people who will read this article and remember their Swedish grandmas who flipped these pancakes for them while they eagerly waited with their plates ready. Our only hope is that we succeeded in honoring such traditions, and enabled some of you to feel the smells and tastes of your home long ago.