Pancake Day, Tea Stops Play
Serving Pancakes at Your Bridge Afternoon
It’s Shrove Tuesday today and I was thinking that it would be pretty cool to serve pancakes instead of cakes or sandwiches as afternoon tea to bridge pals. However, not many of us nowadays have time for fussy preparation (and washing up) and the pancakes have to be suitable to serve at a card table without danger of spoiling the bridge cloth and cards.
So, for inspiration I turned to my 1967 copy of Good Housekeeping which I inherited from my Grandma. Always a good place to start, I love this worn and battered book, held together by generations of Sellotape. The most used and liked recipes are on pages stuck together with tiny samples of rogue ingredients that made a bid for freedom when my Granny was putting plenty of welly into mixing it all up. Most of the recipes are illustrated with functional black and white photos that have a war-time austerity to them and the orange headings are the only hint that this book was published in the swinging sixties.
After a flick through, I find the section on Buns, Scones, Cakes and Biscuits… And there it is! My favourite afternoon tea time treat – Scotch Pancakes. Tasty, quick and easy to make, small and manageable, can be made in advance. Perfect! Here’s the recipe:
Scotch Pancakes Recipe (a.k.a. Drop Scones)
- 8oz. Plain flour
- 1 level tsp. Bicarbonate of soda
- 2 level tsps. Cream of tartar
- 1-4 oz. Granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 pint milk
Sift the dry ingredients and add the sugar. Whisk the eggs and stir into the dry ingredients, with enough milk to make a batter the consistency of thick cream. Do this as quickly and lightly as possible, using a large metal spoon – do not beat. If a thin pancake is wanted, add rather more milk. Have ready a girdle [we use a frying pan], hot and lightly greased all over. Put the mixture in spoonfuls on the girdle; for round pancakes, drop from the point of the spoon, for oval, from the side. Keep the girdle at a steady heat, and when bubbles rise to the surface of the pancakes and burst, turn the cakes over, using a knife, and cook until golden-brown on the other side – 4-6 minutes in all. Put the pancakes on a cloth, cover with another and cool on a rack; this keeps in the steam and the pancakes do not become dry. Serve with butter or with whipped cream, strawberries and jam.
- Lemon butter – this one’s a family favourite! Leave some butter out to warm to room temperature. Mix in some juice and zest of a lemon, plus some caster sugar to taste.
- Blueberries and cream – spread clotted or whipped cream on the pancakes and scatter on some blueberries and a few curls of lemon rind for decoration, then dust with a little icing sugar.
Have a Go!
If you have a go at cooking and serving these tasty little fellas, I’d love to hear how you get on. Please leave any comments and feedback below.