Dutch Babies Recipe

“Dutch Babies” (serves 4 or more, depending)

This is wonderfully easy version of “puffed” pancakes that you cook all all at once in the oven, rather than standing over a hot stove, cranking them out a few at a time. It’s best baked in a large cast iron skillet, but the recipe is easily doubled using two 9×13 casseroles that will fit in the oven side by side on the same rack (leaving room above to allow for rising. Also, if you use enough fruit for topping, with maybe a side of bacon or sausage, you can stretch it to feed, as I often have, an entire basketball team or a birthday party sleepover. When my children were growing up, this was our standard Sunday night supper, and I’d make two pans _ one for four of us, and one for my oldest, who could eat more than any human I’ve ever met. (Years later, when he was a regular on a TV show called “Ed,” he had an entire scene based on his singular style of eating pancakes _ a scene so convincing several people, mostly men, have called it a television classic_ and he didn’t even have to act.)

Here’s how the recipe works:
Preheat oven to 425.
Melt in oven one stick (1/2 c.) butter in a cast iron skillet or 9×13 pan.
Mix in blender or by hand, 5 eggs, 1 c. milk and 1 c. flour until smooth.
Swirl melted butter in the pan to coat evenly, then pour in the batter.
Bake for about 20 minutes, until puffed and golden (center should be set, not runny.)

Meanwhile, prepare fruit topping: Fresh berries are great, but you can use canned or frozen fruit (yes, thaw it first.) I often use a large can of peaches, undrained, to which I add a half c. of sugar, 2 T. corn starch and a half stick of butter, then microwave on high for a few minutes until bubbly and thick. But the simplest (and my favorite) topping is just a squeeze of lemon juice, sweetened with a dusting of powdered sugar.

When you remove the pan from the oven, the batter will have risen gloriously, causing you to think, lest you had any doubt, that you are quite the cook. Which, no doubt, you are. But trust me on this, it WILL FALL. Count on it. Do not take it personally. Just smile and remind your guests that it’s supposed to fall, and they should just be glad to get it. Cut in wedges or squares, serve with fruit or lemon, and dust with powdered sugar. If somebody insists on having syrup, fine. Let them have it. But make them clean up. Happy eating.

Comments

  1. Judy Ermold says:

    When I read a recent column about “retirement” I thought “oh no”. However by the time I finished I was happy to know I will continue to see your articles in our newspaper. I enjoy them so much. Laugh Out Loud term applies so many times reading your thoughts. Don’t hang up your hat yet.

  2. Jan Miller says:

    Sharon,
    Every time I read your column in our Sunday paper I feel the threads of many good memories. Your style of writing is for the heart, to the heart. Thank you. Have a great time speaking in Hope. My best to you,
    Wooster, Ohio

    • Sharon Randall says:

      Thanks, Jan, and all the best to you and your family!
      Sharon

    • Lauretta Schrock says:

      I have followed your column for a long time and love everything you write. I was especially touch by your story about your brother “Seeing what matters most”, that was printed in our Sunday edition of The Elkhart Truth on January 25, 2015. What an inspiration he is to all that know and love him. Your columns inspire me to be a better mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Thanks, and God Bless You. Keep up the great columns.

  3. Leilani Dannen says:

    Love your lighthearted columns each week & seriously consider it the best section of our entire Sunday issue. Today’s column “Parting ways with stuff” made me stop & think about our families yearly summer trip to a lake in N. Minnesota. We are grandparents of four rowdy & amazing grandchildren, so somehow 10 of us survive a week in a 3 bedroom cabin. I have been known to take everything but the kitchen sink. This summer I might surprise everyone & just go “for the fun of it”! Thanks Sharon..you talked me into it. : ) When a grown-up or grandchild (all between ages 3 & 9) asks why I didn’t bring something, I can tell them to be creative and/or use imagination. When that doesn’t work…I will simply say “ask Sharon”. They will never know.
    (All intended in good humor) Seriously, please don’t ever give up your column. It is wonderful & delightful reading.

  4. Angela Moore says:

    Thanks for sharing. I am going to try this recipe this weekend.

  5. Margie Brown says:

    Thank you. Saturday morning is pancake day!

  6. Martha DeFoor Sneed says:

    Through your words, you stir up kindred feelings with this reader! Love, love, love your columns! You warm my heart, bring tears to my eyes, and make me laugh – with a talent that makes each reader feel a special bond with you. And now, you’re sharing a recipe that will endear you to my grandchildren. Thank you.

  7. Becky and Guy Odum says:

    Going to try your recipe for “Dutch Babies” even as I am sending this message. Guy and I will let you know how it comes out!!! Love to YOU and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

  8. Glenda McClelland says:

    I read your column everytime it appears in our local newspaper. I wanted to go see you when you were in Ft. Smith, Ark but found out about it too late. Love your column and the stories.
    Hope you had a Blessed Merry Christmas and have an extra wonderful New Year from Van Buren, Ark.

  9. bill says:

    I hope anybody who makes your dutch babies takes two aspirin immediately thereafter because
    those babies are a recipe for a coronary. Paula Dean, another southern cook, likes to say she’s your chef, not your cardiologist but she should not be your executioner either.

  10. LaJuana Brown says:

    I have enjoyed reading your column for years. Being a south Alabama girl with a heart for the north Georgia mountains I can relate to many of your childhood memories. Thank you for sharing your life and your family with us through your editorials. You make us stop and take time to remember the important things in life–God, family, friends, and comfort food!!! I wish for you and yours a great new year and look forward to reading your columns! God bless you REAL GOOD!

  11. Joyce Cason says:

    Love your columns. You can put into words what is in my heart. Will try the dutch babies recipe soon. Hope your Christmas was great and your new year wonderful.

  12. I can’t wait to try Dutch Babies. Got anymore family recipes? I love your column. If, on the rare occasion it does not appear in the Saturday paper, I am miffed all day long.
    Merry Christmas from North Carolina.

  13. Bill Buell says:

    I wrote you a while back about how I enjoy reading your columns as my wife did before she died. You happened to be at your computer and replied immediately, which blew my mind, since I had assumed that my letter probably wouldn’t even be read, much less answered, much less within just a minute or two.
    Anyway, I just printed out your Dutch Babies Recipe and expect to use it. I live alone since Jean died in 2005 and have tried for many years to eat healthy foods, so I mostly prepare my own food (vegetarian and now mostly certified organic), so to have a recipe like this to add to my rather limited repertoire is most welcome.
    Wishing you a very nice an satisfying holiday season.

  14. Pat Johnston says:

    I love your column. It’s the only reason for buying our slim Saturday paper!

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