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  1. Thursday, June 30, 2011

    Swedish Pancakes (Pannkakor)

    Swedish pancakes (pannkakor) are something I’ve been eating since I can remember. Grandma Wallin (my dad’s mom, 100% Swedish) would make them, complete with lots of butter and granulated sugar. I think I remember her even stacking them with whipped cream and sugar and making a cake out of them some of the time. My dad will have to clarify that point! Even though Parkinson’s makes every dish in the kitchen a labor of love, Grandma Blomquist (my mom’s mom, 50% Swedish) still makes Swedish pancakes for us every time we visit.

    We always loved it when my mom would make them growing up. But they weren’t a frequent occurrence…and now that I’m a mom I know why. They take forever to make! They aren’t difficult, just time-consuming. When Grandma Blomquist makes them, she actually has two pans going, which is super smart if you can juggle it! I just make sure to get an episode of This American Life playing while I cook and I’m good. Just like me, my girls absolutely love it when I make these, and since it happens pretty rarely, it is a real treat.

    I’ve wanted to write about Swedish pancakes for ages and share Grandma Blomquist’s recipe with you. And last night I finally grabbed my camera while I was throwing them together and the post is finally here! Swedish pancakes are a lot like crepes, in case you’ve never had them. I think the texture and flavor is a bit different even though they are very similar. If you look up pancakes on Wikipedia, you’ll discover that many countries lay claim to super flat pancakes!

    The first time I tried to make Swedish pancakes things got a little hairy. So I thought I would take a minute to share a few tips I’ve discovered. The printable recipe will be at the end of the post.

    The batter is very runny. And that’s the way it’s supposed to be. No panicking.

    Use a non-stick pan to keep things easy, but butter the pan before you cook each pancake. It helps the pancakes to brown and it just plain tastes better. I keep a hunk of butter in its original paper and spread a bit around between each pancake.

    Knowing that it takes a while to cook all the pancakes, I always keep an oven-safe plate in a 200-degree oven and put the pancakes in there until all they are all done. They taste just the same whether hot out of the pan or warmed in the oven, and then everyone can eat at once.

    And now for the flip. This is where I had trouble the first time I made them. If you try to flip them too early, they are nearly impossible to flip over. You wait until the top looks dry, there will be some bubbling, and the edges look like they might be browning. First flip over one little edge to see if the pancakes is browning on the underside. If it is, you’re ready to go. Tuck your spatula under that edge, then flip the edge back flat, then FLIP! I didn’t have one mishap last night when I followed my own rules and everything flipped over perfectly!

    One more quick note regarding the heat of the pan. You’ll mostly likely need to adjust the temperature while you’re cooking, but generally the pan will be medium heat, give or take depending on your stove. You want it hot enough that they brown and don’t take years to cook, but not so hot that you’re going to burn them. You’ll figure it out, I promise.

    I think that’s it! On to the recipe…

    Swedish Pancakes (Pannkakor)
    This recipe is from my Grandma Blomquist. She and my Grandpa make them almost every weekend.
    Recipe type: Breakfast
    Cuisine: Swedish
    • 3 cups milk
    • 3 eggs
    • 1 cup flour
    • 2 tablespoons sugar
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    1. Put the milk and eggs in a large bowl and hand whisk until well-blended. Add the flour, sugar and salt and whisk again until well-blended. Batter will be smooth and runny.
    2. Heat a 10-inch non-stick skillet over medium heat. Once the pan is hot, coat the pan with butter (I keep my butter in it's original paper so it's easy to hold and spread around). Pour ¼ cup of batter into the pan and tip pan to coat evenly with the batter. (If you use a different sized skillet, you'll need to adjust the amount of batter accordingly - you want the batter to coat the entire pan and not be super thin or too thick.)
    3. Cook pancake on first side until the top is dried out, the pancake is starting to bubble and the underside is starting to brown. Flip one little edge over onto itself, stick your spatula under that edge, unfold the edge back flat, then flip! Cook until the second side has browned. Repeat process, remembering to add a bit of butter to the pan each time.
    4. Keep completed pancakes on a warmed plate in a 200-degree oven until all the pancakes have been cooked. Serve with butter (yes, more butter), granulated sugar, powdered sugar, berries, jam, or whatever floats your boat!
    5. With a 10-inch skillet, this recipe yields about 20 pancakes. We usually eat 3-5 pancakes each. Leftovers can be refrigerated and heated up in the microwave...and they are yummy!

    swedish pancakes from @janemaynard

  2. Tuesday, May 17, 2011

    Grammy McCarthy’s Blueberry Muffins

    After writing about Grammy McCarthy’s brownies last week, I feel like I have to write about her blueberry muffins, too! Just like the brownies, she always has a batch ready for us when we visit. And whenever we make them here at home two things always happen:

    1. I have fond memories of time with Grammy and Grampy. Sure enough, the other morning as I was re-heating a few for our breakfast, I was immediately transported to Grammy’s kitchen.
    2. Cate constantly begs to eat more muffins. And when I say constantly, I mean CONSTANTLY. The girl is obsessed. And rightly so. They are darn good!

    So, here you are everyone, Grammy’s treasured Blueberry Muffins. Enjoy!

    Grammy McCarthy's Blueberry Muffins
    From Mary McCarthy, Nate’s beyond-lovely grandmother
    Recipe type: Dessert
    • 1½ cups flour
    • ½ cup sugar
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • small ½ teaspoon salt
    • 4 tablespoons butter, cold cut into small pieces or softened to room temp
    • 1 egg
    • ½ cup milk
    • 1 cup fresh blueberries
    1. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together. Work in the butter with a fork or pastry blender until well mixed. Whisk egg and milk together in separate bowl, then add to dry ingredients. Carefully fold in blueberries. Sprinkle tops with sugar. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 mins. Makes appx. 8-9 standard-sized muffins.
    2. To reheat muffins the next day, but in a low oven (200 – 250 degrees) for 10-15 minutes or so. Take them right back to that perfect straight-out-of-the-oven moment. If you’re pressed for time, heat in the microwave for 10-15 seconds, then put in the toaster oven for a few minutes to “crisp” the outside up a bit.

  3. Tuesday, April 5, 2011

    Yorkshire Pudding

    First off, I am so excited about today’s recipe. Since I received it a week ago, I’ve had to stop myself from making it every day.

    For years I’ve been making Puffed Oven Pancakes using a recipe out of my Better Homes & Gardens cookbook. The first time I had these “pancakes” I was 12 years old and my best friend made them for me. She called them German pancakes. I’ve liked them ever since, as do my girls…although Nate has never been a fan.

    I’ve never written an actual post about those puffed oven pancakes, but the recipe frequently gets comments. The most recent comment said something along the lines of, “This is Yorkshire Pudding and it’s English!” I did a little research and discovered that it was in fact a variation of Yorkshire pudding, something I had never heard of. I’m Swedish, not English. I blame my ancestry.

    Then, last week, my friend Angie had us over for dinner, which was heaven…roast, mashed potatoes, amazing salad, amazinger gravy. She pointed at a plate and said, “And here’s some Yorkshire pudding, which you can eat with gravy or jam.” This of course turned us to the topic of Yorkshire pudding, which I had just read about earlier that week!

    Angie and her mother Catherine were saying originally Yorkshire pudding was cooked in the drippings in the pan that the meat was cooked in and was traditionally a savory dish, although it is delicious with sweet toppings and served at breakfast, too!

    I of course took a slice of Angie’s Yorkshire pudding. And quickly realized my puffed oven pancakes are merely a sad shadow of this Yorkshire pudding. The texture and taste are just better. I will never use that old puffed oven pancake recipe again. Seriously. I won’t. Angie happily shared her recipe. Sure enough the ingredients are the same, but the proportions are different. And it makes a world of difference. I even heated up leftovers the next day (a bit in the microwave then crisped up in the toaster oven) and they were fabulous!

    Move over Puffed Oven Pancakes…I present Yorkshire Pudding!

    Yorkshire Pudding
    From Angela Ballard”¦actually, here is Angie’s description of the origin for the recipe: “Passed down through immigrants and pioneers and chubby grandmas and now ME.” Don’t you love that?
    Recipe type: Breakfast
    • 4 eggs
    • 2¼ cups milk
    • 1½ cups flour
    • 1½ teaspoons salt
    1. Blend the ingredients in a blender.
    2. Place 4 tablespoons margarine*(Angie note: I know, the horror. Jane note: I didn’t have margarine and I was too impatient to try the recipe before I got to the store, so I used butter and it worked fine) in the oven in a 9”³ x 13”³ pan until boiling (Jane note: my butter wasn’t quite boiling, but it was starting to get a little too brown”¦so if you use butter, I let it go until it’s all melted and maybe just starting to brown and bubble a bit).
    3. Pour the blended ingredients directly into the hot pan.
    4. (Note: I often halve the ingredients and use an 8×8 pan and it works perfectly.)
    5. Bake at 450 for 25ish minutes.


  4. Wednesday, July 21, 2010

    Kaiserschmarrn (aka Emperor’s Pancakes) Take One!

    When Nate and I were in Berlin a few summers ago, the hotel we stayed in served the most amazing breakfast every morning. One of the items they served was Kaiserschmarrn, or Emperor’s Pancakes, a traditional Austrian dessert…which happens to be very delicious as a breakfast or brunch food.

    The version our hotel served was oh so delicious. There are many recipes out there with various techinques, so I’ve decided to make this one of my culinary quests…to recreate those pancakes we had in Berlin.

    Today is Attempt #1 at Kaiserschmarrn. It was a good attempt. Not quite like the version we had in Berlin, but I like this recipe on its own merits. The pancakes came out with a nice texture and I was popping kaiserchmarrn like candy.

    Kaiserschmarrn is often served with plumb sauce a delicious combination indeed! I shared a great recipe for stewed plums with you a few weeks ago which I would highly recommend using with this recipe.

    So, here is Take 1 of Jane’s Kaiserschmarrn Journey!

    Kaiserschmarrn (aka Emperor's Pancakes) Take One!
    A combination of several recipes I found online
    Recipe type: Dessert
    • 2 cups flour
    • 1 cup milk
    • pinch salt
    • 4 eggs, separated
    • ¼ cup butter
    • ¼ cup sugar
    • ½ cup butter
    • ½ cup raisins (traditional, but optional)
    • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
    1. Mix flour and milk together. Add salt. Stir in egg yolks, ¼ cup butter and raisins (if using). Beat egg whites in a separate bowl with the sugar until peaks form. Melt ½ cup butter in a 12 inch skillet that can be placed in the oven. Add egg whites to the flour mixture and pour batter into pan. Bake at 375 degrees F for 18 minutes (I baked mine for 20 minutes, but it was 2 minutes too long). Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve with plum sauce.

    Since this recipe calls for baking all the batter at once the entire duration of cooking, you end up with one giant pancake, which I cut into little triangles like so.

  5. Tuesday, May 11, 2010

    Homemade Berry Saucy Syrup

    I am a sucker for a beautiful container of berries. They’re just so pretty my wallet and I can’t resist. But half the time I forget I buy them and then the berries end up kind of sad. It’s a crime, really. But if my berries do reach this sorry state, I make good use of them…homemade saucy syrup (I can’t decide if it should be called sauce or syrup, hence saucy syrup.

    saucy syrup 2 web

    I’ve made my saucy syrup with raspberries and blueberries. Most recently I made it from a small container of blackberries. It was SOOOOOOOOOOOO good. If I do say so myself. This homemade saucy syrup pairs beautifully with the texture of my new favorite waffle recipe – the waffles didn’t get soggy at all.

    Sidenote: Baby’s Got Sauce by G. Love has been playing in my head while I write this post. Which automatically makes this post 10 times more fun.

    Homemade Berry Saucy Syrup
    From Jane Maynard
    Recipe type: Dessert
    • 1½ cups berries (one of those 5-6 oz containers) -OR- 1 C blueberries
    • ¾ cup sugar
    • ⅓ cup water
    • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
    • 1 tablespoon corn starch whisked with enough water to make a slurry
    1. Bring the berries, sugar, water and lemon juice to a boil. Lower heat. Simmer for a 5-10 minutes, while slowly adding some of your cornstarch mixture. Add enough to get it to the consistency you like (the cornstarch makes it less watery). Refrigerate leftovers, if you have any!

    saucy syrup 1 web

  6. Friday, April 16, 2010

    My New Favorite Waffle Recipe

    For years I’ve used the waffle recipe in the Better Homes & Gardens New Cook Book. I like the recipe because the waffles come out airy and fluffy. However, they sort of fold under pressure…add butter, moisture or syrup, and they tend to go kind of flat, which is frustrating. The last few times I’ve made waffles I’ve used Mark Bittman’s Quick and Easy Waffle recipe from How to Cook Everything and I’m really liking it.

    My new favorite waffle recipe, tastes great and comes out perfectly every time

    This recipe is a little sweeter, and the waffles are a little heavier…but not too heavy. And they keep their shape and crispiness, no matter what you throw at them. Oh, and they’re easy, making this recipe great for a last minute meal. It’s my new fave, despite how beloved the Better Homes & Gardens recipe is in my heart.

    Top view of my new favorite waffles, a great go-to recipe for any time of day

    My New Favorite Waffle Recipe
    Slightly sweet, reliable go-to waffle recipe that is now my favorite! (Directions below written in my own words.)
    Recipe type: Breakfast
    • Canola or other natural oli for brushing waffle iron
    • 2 C all-purpose flour
    • ½ tsp salt
    • 2 T sugar
    • 2 tsp baking powder
    • 1½ C milk (Jane note: I usually use about 1¾ cups)
    • 2 eggs
    • 4 T butter
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    1. Combine dry ingredients and set aside.
    2. In another bowl, melt butter in microwave. Add milk, eggs and vanilla and whisk well.
    3. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. If the mixture seems too thick, add a little milk. (I always start off adding 1½ cups milk as directed, but generally had another ¼ cup or so at this point.) You want the batter to remain slightly lumpy.
    4. Cook in the waffle iron as you normally cook waffles. Enjoy!
    This recipe works well in both classic and Belgian waffle makers.




  7. Tuesday, November 3, 2009

    Pumpkin Cream Cheese Spread

    On Halloween I thought it would be fun to have something “pumpkiny” for breakfast. While we are loving the pumpkin-pancakes, we’ve eaten them a lot lately so I needed to mix it up. Our local bagel shop was out of pumpkin bagels. Before we could feel too disappointed, a light bulb went off in my head. Pumpkin cream cheese! It was a simple recipe to whip up, and a big hit with everyone in the family. Enjoy!

    pumpkin cream cheese web

    Pumpkin Cream Cheese Spread
    From Jane Maynard, This Week for Dinner
    • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened at room temperature
    • ¼ cup brown sugar
    • ¼ cup pumpkin puree
    • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
    1. Blend all ingredients together with a hand mixer. Spread on a plain bagel or equally complimentary flavored bagel.

  8. Wednesday, October 28, 2009

    Easy, Fluffy Pumpkin Pancakes (using Krusteaz pancake mix)

    I have finally found a pumpkin pancake recipe that I like! I’ve tried mixes, I’ve tried making them from scratch…and generally the pancakes come out flat and gooey. Cate’s preschool recently made pumpkin pancakes and shared the recipe they used…and they’re perfect! Yea for preschool teachers!

    Please note: The recipe below uses Krusteaz Buttermilk Pancake mix. If you have Bisquick, please click her and use the modified version of this recipe. Thanks!

    pumpkin pancakes web

    Pumpkin Pancakes
    Easy, fluffy pumpkin pancakes, using Krusteaz pancake mix. Adapted by me from a recipe on
    Recipe type: Main Dish, Breakfast
    • 3 cups buttermilk pancake mix (like Krusteaz mix, where the box instructions tell you to just add water)
    • 2 cups cold water
    • ⅔ cup canned pumpkin
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
    1. In a medium/large bowl, whisk all the ingredients until just blended (batter should have lumps). Spray heavy griddle or skillet with nonstick spray and heat griddle over medium heat. Spoon 2 tablespoon (I did ¼ cup) batter unto griddle to form each pancake. Cook until edges are drying and bubbles start to pop, turn and cook a few minutes longer. Serve with lots of butter and maple syrup!


  9. Tuesday, January 13, 2009

    A lotta Frittata!

    I made my first frittata, and it came out, and it was tasty, and I’m gonna do it again. In fact, I put omelets on the menu this week…but I forgot about my newfound mad frittata skills, so I’ll be switching that up.  The great thing about frittata is all the servings are done at once, as opposed to cooking individual omelets.  Great if you’re serving a group of people!

    I used a recipe from the Williams-Sonoma catalog, actually.  It was great.  I did not use their $135 frittata pan, however.  I have two 12-inch, non-stick skillets, so I just stacked those.  Yes, I had to be careful when flipping, but it totally worked.

    Here’s the recipe!

    A lotta Frittata!
    From Williams-Sonoma
    Recipe type: Main Dish, Breakfast
    • 10 eggs
    • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    • ¼ cups Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
    • 3 ounces Asiago cheese, cut into ½”³ dice
    • 3 ounces Provolone cheese, cut into ½”³ dice
    • 1 teaspoon olive oil, plus more for brushing
    • 2 Creminelli sausages
    • 1 cup thinly sliced green onions, white and green portion (I did not do 1 full cup)
    • ¼ cup finely diced roasted red bell pepper
    • 3 garlic cloves
    • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme (or sprinkle some dried thyme)
    1. Lightly whisk eggs; whisk in pepper and cheeses. Set aside. In deep half of frittata pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 tsp oil. Add sausages – cook until browned, ~ 5 mins. Transfer to small bowl; discard all but 1 tsp fat in pan.
    2. Reduce heat to medium. Add green onions and bell pepper. Cook 2 minutes. Stire in garlic and thyme – cook 30 sec. Add sausages and egg mixture – cook, using rubber spatula to lift cooked edges and allow uncooked eggs to flow underneath, about 2 minutes. Continue to cook until eggs begin to set, about 4 minutes more.
    3. Set shallow half of frittata pan over medium-low eat; brush lightly with oil. Place shallow pan upside down on top of deep pan. Flip frittata into shallow pan. cook, covered, until eggs are set, about 6 minutes. Shake pan to loosen frittata and slide onto serving plate (we ate it straight out of the pan). Serves 8-10.
    JANE NOTE: I just used some shredded colby jack cheese I had in the fridge. So, I guess my frittata was not TRE formaggi, but it tasted good just the same

    JANE NOTE: Yeah, Creminelli sausages are some expensive sausage you can order through WS. I just used regular old breakfast sausage and it was great.

    Follow-up note, 1/23/09: I have since tried halving this recipe and it worked great. Just use two 9-10”³ skillets instead of 12”³. Works like a charm!


  10. Wednesday, October 15, 2008

    Featured Recipe: Whole Wheat Pancakes

    I’m trying to cut white flour as much as possible (more on that tomorrow!). Normally when I make wheat pancakes, I do half white flour, half wheat flour. This time I took the dive and went ALL wheat flour. I looked through my recipes, found one I thought might work…and it worked GREAT!

    I thought using all whole wheat flour would make the pancakes heavy, but with this recipe they were fluffy…and delicious! Without further ado, the recipe!

    Featured Recipe: Whole Wheat Pancakes
    Adapted from “The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook” (a MUST-HAVE for your kitchen library, by the way!)
    Recipe type: Breakfast
    • 2 cups whole wheat flour
    • 2 tablespoons sugar (I think honey would be a great alternative”¦I’m going to try that next time)
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • ½ teaspoon baking soda
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • 1 large egg
    • 3 tablespoons butter melted
    • 2 cups buttermilk (or 2 C regular milk with 1 T lemon juice added, let sit for a few minutes)
    1. Whisk together dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk egg and butter, then buttermilk. Make a well in dry ingredients, add wet into well, whisk very gently until incorporated (a few lumps should remain). Don’t overmix.
    2. Cook pancakes over medium heat. Flip when bubbles start to appear. My batter was VERY thick, so I had to sort of “spread” the pancake a bit when I put the batter in the pan”¦and the little bubbles never popped by the time it was time to flip the pancakes, but I could see them forming when it was time to flip. (I wouldn’t thin out the batter with milk because I don’t think they’ll come out as fluffy.)