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Readers Recipe | Nikita Stock

Molly’s (American) Pancakes

The American pancake is a fluffy, cakey and delicious treat that most of us here in South Africa refer to as a flapjack. Although fundamentally the same, American pancakes call upon the maker to make large, buttery and sweet cakes instead of our more modest in size mouth-watering flapjacks (go big or go home). However, the great thing about both is that the base ingredients are not overwhelmingly sweet or overwhelmingly savoury – so the end choice of what your pancake (or flapjack) tastes like is up to you. If you want a mountain of butter and syrup, or if you prefer jam or cheese and bacon. In this sense, pancakes are great food for any occasion, for breakfast or the beloved breakfast- for- supper, or any time of day. They go with everything and anything and are a great crowd pleaser.

This recipe is straightforward, quick and easy. It’s a family staple and a good one to keep in the recipe book for a rainy day or a sunny one.

Serves 4


1 1/2 cups flour

3 tbs sugar

3 1/2 tsps baking powder

3/4 tsp salt

1 egg beaten

1 cup milk

3 tbsps melted butter


  • Mix the self-raising flour, baking powder, sugar and the salt together in a large bowl.

  • Create a well in the centre with the back of your spoon, then add your eggs, melted butter and milk.

  • Mix together either with a whisk or electric beater until all ingredients have been properly incorporated. When you’ve reached the right consistency, pour into a jug for easy pouring or alternatively, just use a large serving spoon. Be careful not over to mix the batter or your pancakes will be flat instead of light and fluffy.

  • Heat a tablespoon or so of  butter and 1 tsp of oil in a large, non-stick frying pan over medium heat. When the butter looks frothy, pour a dollop of the batter into the pan, about 8-10cm wide. Be careful not to put the pancakes too close together as they spread during cooking. Cook the pancakes on one side for about 1-2 mins or until lots of tiny bubbles start to form and pop on the surface. Flip the pancakes over and cook for another minute on the other side. Repeat until you’ve used up all the batter.

Serve your pancakes in true American fashion and stack ‘em up high with a bit of butter on top doused in maple syrup or you could top it up with some bacon or jam and ice cream. The pancakes are a vessel for all your favourite toppings.

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