Pancakes have a special place in my heart. My first date with my now husband was over pancakes. It was during finals week of freshman year. I had just finished my chemistry final, and quickly had to get home in order to get ready before Alex came over. I was so nervous, but thankfully my nerves slowly disappeared once he actually arrived. We spiced up the pancakes with all the seasoning I had - cinnamon, pumpkin spice, etc. We made different shapes out of the pancakes, such as smiley faces, the first letters of our names, lighting bolts - you name it. We ate pancakes on one of the tables outside in the sunshine while in the dorms all around us students were studying away. We spent all morning talking, getting to know each other, and writing down all of the places that we wanted to travel in the world. (I actually kept that piece of paper, and made it part of my gift to him on our wedding day 4.5 years later). The fact that I was able to relax that entire time and not think about how much studying I still had to do for the remainder of my finals that week still amazes me. But that’s a gift my husband has - no matter what stresses are in my life, they all disappear when I am with him.
It wasn’t until later that I learned from his family that he has a very specific way of eating pancakes, which he clearly didn’t want to show me on that first date in hopes of not scaring me away. I won’t go into the details of how he eats pancakes, but I’ll just say that our friends and family are all well aware of this notable characteristic, haha!
In light of Valentine’s Day next week, I wanted to share this recipe that would make for a perfect breakfast in bed! Crème Fraîche Pancakes. OMG, these pancakes are so soft, moist, and flavorful. I have never had crème fraîche pancakes before, but they really are different than normal pancakes. Crème fraîche is essentially a french sour cream. However, it has a higher fat content, is richer, thicker, and has a bit less tang than sour cream. So while you can substitute in sour cream if you can’t find crème fraîche, it won’t quite taste the same. I also added some tips and tricks in the instructions and baker’s notes that will help produce the perfect pancake. So as always, I recommend reading through everything before you start! These pancakes work well with any kind of pancake topping, so pick your favorite, and enjoy!
Crème Fraîche Pancakes
Bake time:Serves: 12 pancakes
- 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup flour
- 2 Tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup milk, room temperature
- 1/2 cup crème fraîche, room temperature
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- Melt the butter, set aside to cool.
- Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. Set aside.
- In a separate, medium sized bowl, whisk together the melted butter, milk, crème fraîche, eggs, and vanilla.
- Quickly mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, just until no more flour remains. Do not overmix. Allow the batter to rest for 5-10 minutes.
- In the meantime, heat your pan or griddle over medium-low heat. To test the heat of the pan, drop a few drops of cold water onto the pan. If the water bounces up slightly, it is ready. If the water just sits and boils, the pan is not hot enough. If the water evaporates immediately, the pan is too hot. You can also test the heat of the pan by making a "test" pancake.
- Pour 1/4 cup worth of batter onto the pan. Cook until bubbly on the top and golden on the bottom, about 3-4 minutes. Flip, and cook until golden, about 2 more minutes. Repeat with the remaining batter. Keep the pancakes warm in a preheated 200F oven, until all of the pancakes are done.
- (Optional) Top the pancakes with fruit, powdered sugar, syrup, or whatever you like!
- Store in an air-tight container, with parchment paper between the pancakes to prevent sticking.
- If needed, you can substitute sour cream for the crème fraîche, however it will not taste exactly the same.
- If you are using a nonstick pan or griddle, you don’t need to use nonstick spray. Without nonstick spray, you can achieve an even, golden coloration on the pancakes. Of course, if you are concerned about sticking, lightly spray with nonstick spray.