My Daughter's Post About Danish Pancakes
The kids enjoyed a snow day last week so I asked my 11 year old daughter to write a post about one of her favorite breakfast treats - crepes or as we call them around here, Danish pancakes. These Danish pancakes, pandekager, should not be confused with another Danish pancake called Aebleskiver which are round doughy balls.
Pandekager Danish pancakes are flat and extremely thin compared to classic American pancakes. To me, they look and taste just like crepes.
I remember as a kid, my mor mor (mother's mother) would make these pancakes for us and we would roll them up with strawberry jam and sprinkle them with powdered sugar.
After doing some research on the Internet, I have not been able to find anything showing a difference between crepes and pandekager although I did find recipes for both crepes and pandekager that include eggs and some do not.
I'll also post some tips I figured out when making these on Saturday at the end of my daughter's post, but for now please enjoy her recipe and story.
By my daughter Maddie in 5th Grade
What do think about Crepes?
How about that they came from Denmark? Make for your kids? Well this is my little fun story about them.
One day, when it was a snow day from school, I asked the Reluctant Gourmet to make Danish Pancakes, or as the Danish call them, pandekager, but we probably know them as crepes. I learned about them from the Reluctant Gourmet when he would talk about how he ate them as a kid (some kind of fruit or jam inside it and sugar sprinkled on top).
So I thought, why wouldn't I want that? But sadly he didn't have his mom's famous recipe, so I did a little research to find a recipe. I asked my dad if this recipe was like the crepes he had when he was little. We changed it a bit for things we had around the house and started to make them. - Maddie
Crepes or Danish Pancakes
- small bowl
- small nonstick pan
- measuring spoons
- measuring cups
- 2 eggs
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup flour
- 1⅛ cup milk
- ¼ stick butter melted
- ½ teaspoon sugar optional
- First I helped my Dad collect all the ingredients because he said I was his sous chef.
- Then it is time to crack the 2 eggs into the small bowl, which he taught me how to do about 2 months ago.
- Now, for a little taste in the eggs you add a pinch of salt or ⅛ teaspoon of salt with the measuring spoon. Then I mixed, with a whisk, the salt and the eggs to make it fully yellow.
- Next, my favorite part is to add the flour but it you add too much it tastes not good at all. So to put the exact amount of flour in all you do is just get a regular scoop of flour. Then you get a dinner knife, turn it over so instead of the sharp part being down, it is up and you just move it a cross the measuring cup to even out the flour.
- Next, I added a bit of flour, then mixed it in with the egg and salt. Then do it again and again until there is no more flour. It will be pretty lumpy at first but it is fine.
- Now it is time to get rid of the lumps, so that is where the milk comes in. You do the same thing you did with the flour, you start with a little bit of milk and mix it in, then you add some more and mix it in, and more over and over again until the milk is gone.It should be pretty smooth, without any bumps.
- If you don’t have time to make the batter in the morning, make some the night before then put some saran wrap over the bowl and refrigerate it. You can also make the actual crepes but they taste a lot better fresh.
- Now get the small 8-inch pan and put it on the stove and put the stove on medium heat (all stoves have low, medium, and high). Now to tell that the pan is ready, flick a tiny bit of water and if it evaporates right away it is ready.
- Put only enough batter to fill the pan because too much batter makes them thick and it doesn’t work, but too little makes it rip. So just enough. The batter will start turning golden brown really quickly so don’t walk away! The first time you flip it, it will tear or fold over and it will be a mess but keep trying and it will get a lot better.
- Keep it in the pan for another 10 – 20 seconds then put it on a plate, put some jam or fruit inside, roll it up, put sugar on top and eat it. Yum! My favorite is strawberries with chocolate sauce. Make another and serve to someone and see how they like it and keep making them again and again! By the way this recipe can be doubled or tripled and it would work!
- If you double up the batch, it is easier to use an electric mixer than a whisk.
- Use a non-stick pan. No need to add butter or oil if the heat is correct.
- After you add the batter, swirl the pan around to cover the bottom evenly.
- Don't add too much batter - you want thin pancakes. After the first one or two, you'll get a feel for how much batter to add.
- Start at medium and adjust higher or lower depending how the pancakes are cooking.
- I found it best to wait until you can free up the pancakes by shaking the pan before turning them over.
- Follow the 75/25 rule - that is cook the pancakes on one side for 75% of the time, flip and cook the remaining 25% of the time.
- This recipe makes enough pancakes for two hungry kids with maybe a couple leftover for the cook but if you want enough for four people, double up the batch.
- This is a great dish to make WITH your kids. Not only will they have a blast making them with you, it's a great way to introduce them to cooking and they'll love eating them.
- GREAT JOB Maddie, thanks for the contribution!
- fresh fruit - cut up strawberry's, bananas, blueberries, raspberries, etc
- jam or jelly
- sour cream or cottage cheese
- whipped cream
- chocolate sauce
What's Your Favorite Filling?
We have been using this recipe for years. At our house we call these "German Pancakes", our grandchildren's favourite dish.
Hi Trudy, I guess every country has a version of these pancakes by a different name. Thanks for commenting. - RG
Great post, Maddie! And your crepes/pandekagers turned out beautifully! Your dad really puts you to work when you have snow days, huh? 🙂
Hey Jenni, I'll show this to Maddie but please don't remind her too much. - RG
We love this recipe for Mother's Day. Especially when children can get involved.
all the best,
Sherry + Wendy
As an American immigrant in Denmark for almost 20 years, I spread tyttebÃ¦r (Ligonberry) or Bosenberry jam on top of the panakager, roll them up, and soak them with Vermont Maple Syrup. (I import it a gallon at a time).
As long as the panakager have no sugar in the recipe and you don't add confectioners sugar, the Maple Syrup + either of these jams will provide more than enough of a sweet taste, while the pancakes provide the right texture, especially if they are crispy! I far prefer these to my old love, American pancakes.
Hi Maddie! Good for you making Danish Pancakes in 5th grade. It was probably right around then my Mom started letting me help make them (taught me to pour them, flip them--we used to comment on what the shape was and what animals we would see in the cooking patterns). Danish Pancakes were my Mom's favorite thing to cook for us on the weekends and to date they're still my favorite food. You might be interested in knowing Danish pancakes are VERY different from French crepes in that the pancake flavor should NOT be overwhelmed by fillings (or the light coating of jelly we were taught to put in ours) whereas French crepes, crepes from just about everywhere else have little to no flavor. That's what differentiates Danish Pancakes from "crepes" and IMO, it's a huge difference. I'm 45 and still make them regularly. I'd honestly never seen a written down recipe as my Mom taught us to make them from memory, feel, consistency, etc... Anyway, thanks for the post. People should know just how much the Danes have added to world cuisine beyond the pastry! Good Job!
Good job with the recipe, some of my best memories as a child in Denmark is my mother making pancakes on a Sunday afternoon and serving them rolled up with vanilla ice cream, yummy, such a easy treat to make with the kids on a afternoon and a way to create memories.
Thanks Birgit. Haven't rolled them with ice cream yet. I'm afraid to suggest that to the kids. - RG
They look really yummy. My Mother made them for me too when i was little and the father of friends i grew up with too.
We often ate them filled with homemade Strawberry jam, which in my opinion has way more flavor and a better sweet/sour ratio then the store bought and is easy enough to make. My other two favorites would be with apple slices baked in when the upside of the pancake is still slightly moist and sprinkled with cinnamon. Harder to flip but well worth the effort as i love apples in autumn and winter. But as i prefer savory food over sweet most of the time, i also make pancakes with slices of middle aged cheese, usually Gouda. I also often substitute normal flour with whole wheat, gives the pancakes a nuttier flavor and makes them naturally sweeter in my experience. Wow, wrote a lot there… in the end, theirs nothing you cant put on your pancakes if you want ^^ Keep up the good work, i will surely rummage around a bit more on this site. greetings from northern Germany. Anna
Great post. My dad taught me how to make pancakes, but have to admit that I never had the nerve to flip them in the air the way he did.
Pancakes with ice cream is probably the national dessert here in Denmark, and people can have very strong opinions on how they should taste. Some people add Vanilla to the batter but personally I add cardamom - I love the stuff so I just add a lot (approx 1 - 2 tsp.) - It really makes them extra tasty. Also try substituting half the milk with beer - besides adding flavour it makes them more crispy.
You make yours the same way I make mine. Cardamom and beer MAKE the Danish pancake in my opinion. My mother only adds 80mL of beer rather than replacing half the milk with it, but that may be because she didn't want too much beer in the pancakes for kiddos. 🙂
I add vanilla, but did it on my own. My Mom added neither cardamom nor vanilla, though I will say she used a good deal more sugar than is in this recipe (IIRC, she used ~1/2 cup). I'm not a fan of beer in any shape or form, so that's right out, but hey, it's always nice to hear from someone back in the land of the Aesir.
My Danish exchange student and my two kids made this last night after supper. It was so good 🙂 And I believe the kids and hubby enjoyed as well! I'm sure we will be making these again!!
Thank you for sharing - I loved this recipe.
They taste just as the ones my daddy used to make. 😀
Have been trying to find a similar tasting recipe for a while now.
G. Stephen Jones
You are very welcom Mallory and thanks for letting me know.
We used to eat Swedish Pancakes when I was a kid, but our neighbor christened them, "Latex Pancakes" and that's what we always called them. Anyway, I have been researching pancakes and, as far as I can tell, there are a few differences between crêpes and Swedish, Danish, Dutch, German and English pancakes. The differences consist of the proportions of flour, eggs and liquid.
Swedish: 1/2 cup flour : 1 cup milk : 4 eggs
Danish, German, Dutch: 1 cup flour, 1-1/8 cup milk : 2 eggs
English: 1 cup flour : 1 cup milk : 1 egg
French crêpes: 1 cup flour, 1 cup milk, 6 eggs
(I should note here that the recipes in all of these countries vary a lot from cook to cook.)
Swedish pancakes have very little flour but lots of eggs. They are really fragile, but delicious with the traditional lemon juice and powdered sugar. The German, Danish, Dutch and English pancakes were all about the same, a thicker batter and a sturdier pancake (though the English seem to skimp on the eggs). In French Crêpes the proportion of eggs is very high but there is more flour in relation to the wet ingredients than in Swedish pancakes. The difference in the Crêpe recipe makes them tender but sturdy. They can stand up to the lumpiness of the savory as well as the sweet, fruit fillings used in France. (I have also seen crêpe recipes that are almost identical to the Danish one above.) The German, English and Scandinavian pancakes are almost exclusively eaten with light, sweet fillings such as jam or lemon juice and powdered sugar and they don't need to be as sturdy.
G. Stephen Jones
Thanks for sharing your research Jake.
That was a fantastic recipe! I got out of the bathtub to find my poor Danish husband trying to make pancakes for himself and our kids with another recipe, and he'd forgotten the eggs. Needless to say it went horribly wrong so I cleaned it up and found this recipe. I now have happy kids and a happy Dane. Thanks!
My husband says his Granny made something like this but included apples in the batter while cooking and they were served like pancakes with syrup, not rolled up with a filling. She wasn't a very good cook he says, so it had to be simple. Has anybody seen a version like that? Would adding the apple slices affect the outcome?
My Lithuanian mociute (granma) would lock the kitchen door when she cooked her special dishes. Once, she let me see her make blinai or crepes. She put sour creme in the batter, then rolled them up with like sweet ricotta cheese and fruit jam. Maybe some apricot schnapps too!!