Dear Mom was a master pancake maker and passed down her 5 tips for making perfect pancakes. Dad however preferred the more down home term flapjacks, I had assumed it was from his army days. In my childhood home the term was used interchangeably. I reserve pancakes or flapjacks for those special lazy Sunday mornings. A bottle of real maple syrup is always in the pantry for my perfect pancake indulgence.
Is there a difference between a Flapjack and a Pancake?
While living in England I found that there is a difference. A flapjack is sweet baked bar made with oats, brown sugar and syrup, and a pancake is thin pan fried batter made with flour. In the US and Canada, the two words seem to sometimes be used interchangeably. A google search for “flapjacks” will bring up both pancakes and traditional UK recipes.
Tips for Perfect Pancakes
Don’t over mix the batter.
Keep telling yourself that “lumps are good” when it comes to pancakes. An overworked batter results in a stack of tough and chewy pancakes.
Let the batter rest.
No matter how hungry you might be, just have a little patience and let the pancake batter rest for a few minutes, I usually let it sit for 10 minutes or so. Why? It works to give the gluten time to settle down and results in soft and tender pancakes.
The pan or griddle needs to be hot enough.
Don’t add the batter to the pan until the skillet or griddle is hot enough, but how to determine if it’s hot enough you say? Mom would always sacrifice the first pancake to check if the pan was hot enough. You want a golden-brown exterior with delicate crisp edges and a soft fluffy interior. If the pan isn’t hot, enough the pancake batter will soak up the oil, and you end up with a greasy pancake.
Don’t let the pan overheat.
A too high heat will cook unevenly and result in a doughy inside with burnt outsides. The best temperature for a beautiful golden-brown outside and fluffy inside is a medium heat setting.
Flip the pancakes at the right time.
Only flip once and wait about a minute after the bubbles start to appear. If you flip more than once you may lose that nice fluffy texture.
Those are my five tips for perfect pancakes, please comment and let me know if you have any tips for pancake perfection.