Pannukakku is the premier pancake of Finland. It is a wonderful dish to prepare when you're craving pancakes but don't want to spend a lot of time flipping at the griddle.
Although it is called an oven-baked pancake, a pannukakku is really more like a combination of French toast, custard, crepe, and pancake. It comes out of the oven as an impressive golden crater. The crispy sides rise above the edges of the pan and the center is creamy and glistening with the melted butter.
You may have seen similar recipes titled German pancake or Dutch baby. No matter what it is called, it is a delicious alternative to the average breakfast.
- In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, sugar, and vanilla sugar (or vanilla) until creamy. Stir in the grated lemon zest.
- In a separate bowl, sift together flour, salt, and baking powder. Stir into the egg mixture. Allow the batter to rest for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 450 F.
- When pancake batter has rested, place butter in an oven-proof frying pan or pie plate. Place the pan in the oven and allow the butter to melt without browning (watch carefully).
- Once your butter has melted, remove the pan from the oven. Use a pastry brush to coat the surface and side of the pan evenly with the melted butter.
- Pour pancake batter into the hot, buttered pan and return to the oven.
- Bake for 15 minutes, or until puffed and golden.
The recipe can easily be altered to personal taste. However, it's important to maintain the simple ratios of using 1/4 cup flour = 1/4 cup milk = 1 egg/per serving. With that in mind, go ahead and add sugar and flavorings to taste and either decrease or increase the number of servings.
While you can certainly enjoy this delicious pancake on its own, you can make it even more delicious with a sweet topping. Try it with whipped cream and fresh fruit, fruit compote, or lightly sautéed apples.