The German.


January 27, 2019

For those of you who adore lemon bars, I present its cousin who appears at breakfast in my home… The German Pancake.

The trick here is the pan. You have got to use a cast iron skillet. You can use one big one or two small skillets… this recipe will make either of those.


  • 3 Tablespoons Butter
  • 2 Eggs
  • ½ cup Milk
  • ½ cup Flour
  • 3 Tablespoon Sugar
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • ½ teaspoon good quality pure Vanilla (optional)
  • Plus Lemons and Powdered Sugar for toppings when serving.


  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Meanwhile, put the butter in the cast iron skillet (and wait for the oven to heat up). Do not try to cheat the system and use some other pan – use a cast iron skillet.
  3. While you are waiting, start with the batter… But when the oven is ready, put the cast iron skillet in the oven until the butter is melted (you can multi-task, right?).
  4. For the batter, mix the remaining ingredients in either a bowl with a bit of muscle or in the blender – your pick.
  5. Once the butter is melted, pull the pan out of the oven and swirl it around a bit so that it coats the inside walls of the cast iron skillet.
  6. Then, pour the batter in and pop it back in the oven for 18 minutes. While it is cooking, slice up the lemons and get the powdered sugar on deck.
  7. When the timer goes off, pull it out of the oven and plate it up immediately. Give it a good dousing of lemon juice and then fill up the puddles of lemon liquid with powdered sugar and eat it up.

Some people call it a dutch baby if you make it in a smaller skillet. There are other versions out there with stuff in them, but I am a purist… I like plain vanilla creme brulee and traditional german pancakes. Funny thing about this is that I remember my grandmother making them, but have yet to find them in Germany (and I go to Germany every summer).

One more thing, since you made it this far… Don’t wash your cast iron skillet with dish soap. Really. If there is something stuck on it, sprinkle a few tablespoons of salt and use that as your scouring agent then give it a good rinse in hot water and a light coating of a light oil (light in flavor, like corn oil or canola oil).

Auf Wiedersehen.


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