Able-huh? I must have repeated the Danish word 50 times and after all was said and done Elise said, “Mom, I really like these pancake balls.”
So today I made traditional Danish “pancake balls” in my beautiful cast iron “pancake ball” pan. The first batch was a bust because the pan wasn’t hot enough. The rest were perfect. Now Elise wants them for her birthday even though it’s 5 months away.
The beauty of these balls is the transformation as you turn them. The cooked edge flips up, the gooey batter spills to fill the mold, and after the second flip, you have a beautiful formed ball ready for powdered sugar and a little maple syrup. I’d say a lake of maple syrup, but it is now a rationed item in our house. Can’t find it here in Spain, so the couple jars we have are very carefully apportioned. No puddles of wasted syrup here.
In fact, though the inability to buy some of these special food items is often frustrating, it is teaching us a lesson or two. Less waste, more savoring and valuing those things that are now special and prized. We didn’t used to think about it. Now we do. Cheerios on the floor. No way. Can’t even waste one. And don’t even think of tossing that last piece of pumpkin bread. Save it, freeze it, eat it. But never toss it. Pumpkin is precious. As are chocolate chips and candy canes, refried beans and Bisquick, taco seasoning and peanut butter… and the list goes on.
From Cuisine at Home – October 2004
Begin to heat up your aebleskiver pan.
Separate 6 eggs.
In a large bowl combine: 6 egg yolks, 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 cup whole or 2% milk, 1/4 cup vegetable oil, 2 T. sugar, 1 t. baking powder, 1/2 t. salt, 1/2 t. vanilla extract, and 1/8 t. ground cardamon (optional – I don’t use it). Whisk until blended.
Beat 6 egg whites until stiff, but not dry. Fold them into the batter gently just until blended.
Coat pan with nonstick spray, then place 1/2 t. oil in each well; heat for 1 minute. Test it. It’s ready when a drop of batter puffs and oil bubbles.
Fry aebleskivers in oil over medium to medium-high heat:
1. Fill each well to the rim with about 1/4 cup of batter. Cook until the batter begins to bubble (1-2 min).
2. When a crust forms, poke a skewer to the bottom and slide up 1/4 turn, spilling the batter into the well; cook 1 minute. Rotate another 1/4 turn, then cook 1 more minute.
3. To test for doneness, insert a skewer into the center of the ball. It’s done when it comes out clean.
THE FIRST BATCH IS A TEST RUN. Don’t feel bad if they are horrible. Just adjust the heat. If they smoke or burn, turn the heat down a bit. If it takes longer than 2 minutes to form a crust, the heat is too low, so turn it up a bit. Do begin heating your pan BEFORE you begin the batter. The cast iron takes a while to heat. DO use oil in the wells or you’ll have a sticky batter mess.