Healthy tidbit – Dutch Baby with elderberries

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Like in every year, strawberries were the heralds, followed by cherries … and now out of a sudden the whole farmer’s market is covered in shades of red and blue. It’s the season for all those sweet-sour jewels that delight us only for such a short period of the year! And I enjoy it to the fullest!

Blueberries, blackberries, gooseberries, raspberries, currants – I love all of them! And nearly all of them I have packed into this baked oven pancake during the last weeks when this dish has become a staple in our flat (at least on the days that were not too hot). This recipe definitely is well tested!


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This latest version I made with some perhaps more exotic berries … at least you usually can’t buy them, but have to pick them yourself. I am talking about elderberries. They are just getting ripe around here and I imagined them to be as well a good companion for a sweet Dutch Baby. And they are! Preparing them is a bit more work intense, but it’s worth the effort.

The flavour of elderberries – you shouldn’t eat them raw – is very intense and hard to describe. As a child I didn’t like it at all – perhaps because it was solely associated with being ill: When we’ve got a flue we had to drink the warmed dark red elderberry juice. And this had some reason: Those little dark blue perls are packed with vitamin C and B, essential oils, antioxidants… Scientific studies proved elderberries (Sambucus nigra, to be precise) to be effective for treating influenza. They have anti-inflammatory, soothing and mucolytic effects. As a household remedy they’re also used as cure against stomach disorders. It is even suggested that elderberries help in treating diabetes. And, well, your skin won’t mind antioxidants as well, eh?

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Finally some notes on the name of this pancake: It is referred to as “Dutch Baby” or “German Pancake”. As I never came across this kind of pancake in the Netherlands nor do I know this as a German traditional dish, I was curious how it got its name. Apparently – but not much is certain – the Dutch Baby was invented in a small café in Seattle according to German pancakes, which were called Dutch because the daughter of the house couldn’t pronounce the word “deutsch” (German) correctly. That’s how the story goes 😉

Anyway, German, Dutch or American – the important thing that counts in the end is taste. And in when it comes to this the Dutch Baby is a winner!

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Dutch baby with elderberries (1-2p.)

80 g flour, 2 eggs, 100 ml milk, 1+1 tablespoon sugar, dash of salt, 1 tablespoon butter, 75 g elderberries (about 6 umbels) or 150 g other berries or fruit (f.ex. blackberries, blueberries, cherries), icing sugar

In a small bowl whisk flour, eggs, milk, 1 tablespoon sugar and salt. Let batter rest for 10-15 minutes.

Meanwhile preheat oven to 200°C. Also prepare the elderberries: First wash them (still on the umbel), then remove berries from the umbels into a medium bowl. Fill bowl with water and stir the berries. Let sit for a minute. Pour off any berries or stems that float to the top, and strain the rest of the water out of the bowl.

Heat butter in a cast iron (or other ovenproof) skillet (∅ 23). Add berries and remaining tablespoon of sugar and sautée for about a minute, then pour in batter in circles into the skillet, starting from the centre. Transfer skillet to oven and bake for 15-20 minutes.

Use potholders to remove pancake from oven. Generously dust with icing sugar and serve immediately. A scoop of vanilla icecream makes everything even better!

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