When I fetched Max from nursery today, I was told that he had been saying a new word incessantly all morning: "apple cake". And when a child at 33 months has a repertoire of only 20 odd words, that is pretty impressive, believe you me.
Moved to tears, I thought "let the boy have some cake and eat it". But then my hormones kicked in... it's not Shrove Tuesday, it's not National Pancake Day and yet, I felt an urge to get my hands dirty on some batter this afternoon. So with some over-ripe pears at hand and some blueberries that wouldn't be at their height for very much longer, I was on a mission... to make pancakes. I couldn't fool him, though. He looked at his plate and said "no, no, apple" and refused to eat them - so I had more than my fair share and asked myself once more why we can't have pancake day every day! (Probably because tomorrow, I will finally have to make some apple cake if I want to avoid a major tantrum...)
Pear pancakes with blueberry sauce
(makes 10 pancakes of 10 cm diameter)
150 g self-raising flour
1 level tsp salt
50 g caster sugar
1 pinch cinnamon
2 level tsp baking powder
2 egg whites
300 ml milk
1 ripe pear (peeled and cut into small dice)
butter (for frying)
blueberries to decorate
For the sauce:
300 g blueberries
100 ml pear (or apple) juice
2 tbsp caster sugar
Heat the pear juice, blueberries and sugar in a pot and simmer for 10 minutes, until the blueberries are soft and have given off some colour. Whizz in a blender and keep warm.
For the pancakes, combine the flour, salt, sugar, baking powder and cinnamon in a bowl and work with a fork to remover any lumps. Beat the egg whites with the milk and slowly incorporate the flour mix. Make sure you achieve a smooth batter.
Heat some butter in a frying pan (10 cm diameter) and ladle in some batter - depending on how thick you like your pancakes. (For this recipe and the yield of 10 pancakes, I made them to American-style thickness). Sprinkle some pear over.
Leave to cook over medium heat until little crates appear all over the pancake - a sign that the baking powder is making the batter rise and the bottom should be cooked enough for you to flip the pancake over.
Carefully turn the pancake and cook on the other side until golden brown.
Serve, still warm, with the sauce and some fresh blueberries for decoration.