"Now we're going to make a pancake. Now there's going to be a pankee. Now we're going to fry a pankye."
And then she got out three eggs and tossed them high in the air. One of the eggs landed on her head and cracked open, making the yolk run into her eyes...
When the pancake was done on one side, she tossed it halfway to the ceiling to flip it in the air and then caught it on the griddle. And when the pancake was done, she flung it across the kitchen right onto a plate that was sitting on the table.
"Eat," she cried. "Eat, before it gets cold!"
So Tommy and Annika ate, and they thought it was a very good pancake.
Pippi Longstocking, Astrid Lindgren, Pippi Moves into Villa Villekulla
Since moving to the UK in 2009 I've been adopted by a wonderful Swedish/English family, who have taken me into their home for Christmases, Midsummers and weekends in between. This recipe was suggested by my Swedish sister Anna, who loved Pippi Longstocking growing up. The pancakes Pippi makes Tommy and Annika are classically Swedish; not as thick as American pancakes, not quite as thin as French crêpes. Many families in Sweden eat them with jam for dessert every Thursday, though probably without the flecks of eggshell that inevitably run through Pippi's batch.
This is a very simple recipe, and easy to adjust for the number of people you're serving; the general rule is that you need twice the amount of milk as you do flour. The recipe my Swedish mum Ingela sent me also includes a brilliant piece of advice - if you include melted butter in the batter, you don't need to grease the pan for each pancake. As the butter has a tendency to burn between pancakes, this is a fantastic tip. It also means that these are, quite simply, the easiest batch of pancakes I've ever made.
Swedish Pancakes (Tunna Pannkakor)
Makes around 16
240g plain flour
1/2 tsp salt
2tbsp melted butter
Measuring jug (large enough to hold at least 1.5L)
Non-stick frying pan
1. Beat the eggs with around 60g of the flour (there's no need to be precise with the amount - just 'some') in the measuring jug until they form a smooth mixture. Alternate adding the rest of the flour with the milk, beating the mixture continuously. The batter should have the consistency of single cream. Flavour with the salt and sugar, then add the melted butter (just before cooking).
2. Heat the frying pan over a low heat, with a little bit of butter in the pan before the first pancake. Once again, as there's butter in the batter, you don't need to re-grease the pan between each pancake. Pour about 2tbsp of the batter into the centre of the pan, and swirl the pan around until the mixture covers the base evenly. Cook until the pancake is light brown in small patches underneath, and then flip using the spatula - or in the air if you're very good at flipping pancakes (which I am not).
3. Once the pancake is cooked on the other side, place in the oven (set at around 60C) on an ovenproof plate/baking tray to keep warm until you've used up all the batter. Make sure you continue to whisk the batter in between each pancake so that the flour doesn't settle in the bottom of the jug. Serve with jam or sugar.