PUFFY BAKED PANCAKES

Dutch Babies (German Apple Pancake Puff) and Magnolia Pancakes
Here are two recipes for baked “pancakes”which act like soufflés: they puff up and make a spectacular presentation. You need no special skill to make them, the eggs do all the work - and they are absolutely easy to prepare - so give them a try for a special breakfast or an after-theater or late-night, off-beat-dessert moment.

DUTCH BABIES
(German Apple Pancake Puff)


SERVES 4-6

1 stick, butter
3 large apples - peeled, cored and sliced (such as Granny Smith or McIntosh)
3 tablespoons, lemon juice
1/2 cup, brown sugar
1 teaspoon, cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon, nutmeg
6 eggs
1 1/2 cups, milk
1 1/2 cups, flour
1/2 teaspoon, salt










Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Toss the apple slices in the lemon juice.

In a 10-12-inch cast iron skillet, or other large ovenproof pan, melt the butter over low heat. Remove and reserve about 4 tablespoons of the melted butter.

In the remaining butter, sauté the apple slices over medium heat for about 4 minutes, or until the apples are tender but still hold their shape. As they cook, sprinkle over the brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg, and stir to coat the apple slices thoroughly.

In a mixing bowl (or blender or food processor) combine the eggs, milk, flour, salt and the reserved melted butter. Beat until smooth.

Spread the apple mixture evenly over the bottom of the pan, and pour the egg batter on top. Place pan in the preheated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until puffy and golden brown. Remove from oven, and turn immediately onto a warm platter so that the apples are on top. [You may simply cut the pancake into serving pieces, without turning it out, if you prefer.] Dust with powdered sugar and serve immediately.

MAGNOLIA PANCAKES

These are individual servings, that puff and bloom like large magnolia blossoms in the oven heat. You will need 4 one-cup, round or oval, oven-proof ramekins, soufflé dishes or custard cups.

SERVES 4

6 eggs
1 cup, flour
1 cup, milk
1/2 cup, granulated sugar
1/4 cup, frozen orange juice concentrate (thawed but not diluted)
1 tablespoon, melted butter
1/2 stick (4 tablespoons), butter


Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Divide the 1/2 stick of butter between the four ovenproof dishes, placing 1 tablespoon of butter in the bottom of each dish.

In a mixing bowl, combine the eggs, flour, milk, sugar and orange juice concentrate, blending thoroughly. Add the melted butter and mix well.

Place the prepared dishes in the preheated oven until the butter in each has melted, but is not browned. Divide the batter between the four hot dishes, return them to the oven, and bake at 450 degrees for about 20 minutes or until puffed and golden.

To serve: have under-plates and garnishes ready; the pancakes must be served immediately, before deflating. Dust each magnolia pancake with powdered sugar, and serve with lemon wedges and strawberries or other berries in season.



Variations:
To prepare in one dish: use a 9-inch pie or quiche dish. Melt the entire 1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) of butter in the bottom of the dish, and proceed as directed above.