Today is pancake day, or Shrove Tuesday if you want to get technical. Growing up in Britain this was the only day of the year we really ate pancakes. And then as pudding, not as our main meal. It was a festive affair, and something to get excited about.
When one side was done, she’d toss them into the air. Occasionally they landed on the floor, but most of the time the pancakes ended safely back in the pan. As we got older we were allowed to try our hand at tossing pancakes, invariable ending in disaster. Then we’d be waiting on the sidelines ready for our mum to slide a pancake out of the pan onto the plates in our outstretched hands.
On the dining table there’d be white sugar and Jif lemon waiting for us. The pancake was only ready to eat once we’d sprinkled sugar over it, lashed it with drops of lemon juice and then rolled it up.
|Essential ingredient for my annual British pancake
Photo Credit: Adam Eret
When I moved to the Netherlands I discovered that the Dutch are pancake crazy, but the pancakes here are not the same as my annual pancakes growing up. Dutch pancakes are much thicker, and the Dutch have dreamt up just about every feasible and unlikely topping you could imagine for a pancake. Delicious but nothing nostalgic about them.