Good advice on how to make pancakes was given decades ago by the Milk Marketing Board for Northern Ireland in a little leaflet they produced called Pancake Corner. Housewives all over Northern Ireland used this little guide to produce every type of pancake you could think of – including apple pancakes, onion pancakes, apricot pancakes, cheese and asparagus pancakes, surprise pancakes, and the classic ‘New Ulster Pancake’, to name but a few.
I’ve updated the basic pancake batter ingredients into metric and US measures, and taken a few ideas from the leaflet so they aren’t lost forever – the Milk Marketing Board for Northern Ireland closed its doors in 1994 due to deregulation of the British milk market.
The leaflet advises that keeping the batter in a fridge for 24 hours before cooking makes for lighter pancakes.
The basic batter recipe is included below these pancake suggestions.
Types of Pancakes
Apple Griddle Pancakes
Add a cup of grated Bramley apples to the batter and increase sugar to 55 g / ¼ cup.
Spread with butter and sprinkle with caster sugar and ground cinnamon when cooked.
Banana Griddle Pancakes
Take a large ripe banana and slice it very thinly. Mix into the pancake batter. When cooked spread with butter, and sprinkle with caster sugar and fresh lemon juice (use big Sicilian lemons – the only ones to use, in my opinion).
The retro tin of crushed pineapple was bound to make its way into this recipe collection. Crushed pineapple featured in so many tray bake, cake and preserves recipes, it isn’t surprising to find it in Northern Irish pancakes too.
Just add a cup of drained crushed pineapple to the basic pancake batter. When cooked, butter and sprinkle with caster sugar.
Leave out the sugar, and add one large onion, finely chopped. Cook more slowly on a low heat and serve with bacon and eggs.
There are more recipes in the leaflet, but I’ll not mention some of the really retro ones that are just too far-fetched to be edifying.
I’ll finish up with the jewel in the crown – this is the one my Grandma made, probably long before this leaflet was even printed (The Milk Marketing Board for Northern Ireland was only formed in 1933).
New Ulster Pancake
- You will need 1 pint of pancake batter and 225 g / ½ lb Bramley apples.
- Peel and slice in the round a large Bramley apple.
- Pour enough pancake batter onto the griddle or pan to make a pancake large enough for the apple slice to lie on.
- Press the apple slice down onto the cooking batter.
- Cook in the usual way, turning after a couple of minutes or so.
- Dust with caster sugar and serve with freshly whipped cream.