This is the last recipe of “apple week” for this year. The Basic Unsweetened Applesauce turned into rich sweet Maple Bourbon Apple Butter, and that apple butter shows up in this recipe. See how nicely that works? I like themes. It gives me inspiration, and I’m just that kinda gal. Themes for parties, themes for blog posts, themes for parks; they all work! But, just so you don’t get sad thinking the fall theme is over, I’m also kicking off a series of Octoberfest posts as well. For the Octoberfest theme there will be a bunch of great German-style recipes to share as well as post or two on the other October staple: beer.
To move us smoothly from apples to Octoberfest, I thought of nothing better than a German Apple Pancake or Apfelpfannkuchen (say that fast ten times!). These pancakes resemble popovers more than pancakes, and have a taste and texture similar to popovers or bread pudding. What makes them really special though is the caramel-like sauce under the apples and the insanely addictive crunchy edge. While it does not produce a pancake with a gravity-defying popover style edge (like this one), it does something far more important; it tastes good—really good.
For my recipe I started with a highly rated and delicious version from Cooking Light. True to form, I switched out the all-purpose flour with whole wheat pastry flour. I also added a little apple butter to the batter to give it even more apple flavor. I do, after all, have an awful lot of apple butter around the house right now.
To get the most rise out of your pancake, the batter needs to be room temperature or slightly warmer. To accomplish this, I heat the milk before adding the eggs but not so hot that it cooks the eggs. The Cooking Light version uses egg substitute instead of whole eggs, which I don’t like to cook with. If you want a lighter recipe you can obviously use the egg substitute. I’ve made this with the skim milk used in the original recipe, but I’ve also made it with low-fat and whole milk. All three work with very little difference.
It’s best served warm right out of the oven. It’s sweet enough that you don’t need syrup or anything more than a very light dusting of powdered sugar. It makes an nice presentation too, with the cored apple rounds. It’s a great choice this time of year if you are trying to impress your brunch guests or if you just want a breakfast that everyone will devour. Enjoy!
This recipe is adapted from a German Apple Pancake recipe at Cooking Light.