I had an early Pancake Day feast (that spilled over into the next day too!) with my boyfriend at the weekend and I decided to use my mum’s Be-Ro book to make this year’s pancakes. My mum used this book every year to make pancakes for me and my siblings on Shrove Tuesday. I love pancakes, and they are my sister’s number one favourite food. So this book and my mum must have been doing something right!
Be-Ro (originally called Bells-Royal) is one of the first popular brands of self-raising flour in the North of England. Plain flour was most commonly used, until the 1920s when Be-Ro used these recipe books to market the product and show how useful self-raising flour was. The recipe books helped the brand to become famous and are still being produced now, with the 41st edition published August 2011. The edition I used is their 19th edition and was published in 1956. The entire book is in black and white, including all the photos. Nothing like the recipe books today!
The book is full of some brilliantly old school tips and phrases, such as “The woman who can cook well and bake well has every reason and every right to be proud of her cooking” – something which is definitely still true today! And for men too! It felt great using such a well worn book to make these pancakes, and I became a part of my family’s baking history as I know my grandmother used this book too.
This is such a simple recipe and I cannot imagine anyone not being able to follow it and make a delicious pancake. I doubled the recipe in the book and got 9 pancakes from the mixture. I weighed out 10oz. (about 283g) and made a well in the middle. I put two eggs in the well then started whisking slowly pouring in a pint of milk (570ml approx) as I whisked.
It easily formed a batter very quickly. I heated up a frying pan and before cooking each pancake put a knob of butter in the pan. I measured the batter out using a ladle and cooked for a few minutes on either side. Here are some of the toppings we enjoyed…
Savoury – some people turn there noses up at the idea of savoury pancakes, but they are delicious! Pancake batter is very neutral so your topping really makes it what it is. This was passata, onion and cheese. Very tasty! I’ve also put ham, mushrooms and spinach on savoury pancakes before. I put the pan under the grill to melt the cheese.
Ice cream and toffee sauce, need I say more?
Chocolate spread – put this on with a spoon while the pancake is still cooking on the second side, it’ll melt perfectly all over. Then plate up and add banana slices and ice cream, my favourite!
Finally, the classic lemon and sugar, I always finish a pancake feast with one of these to cleanse my palette as sometimes I over load on the chocolate spread! Such a great pancake feast, I totalled 7 pancakes in one weekend, and I still want more… What is your favourite pancake topping?