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Pancake Soup


Pancake Soup

Back in the 1980's I had a great friend who lived right next door to me.  We lived in a row of town houses and had similarly aged children.  Our husbands were both in the airforce. Her name was Mabel and I have to confess I learned a lot about cooking from her.

She was one of my early inspirations.  She had three children and I had four.  Our days were busy and our hands were full, but every night after supper we would sit together on our shared door step, have a coffee together and talk about our days which had just passed.

Pancake Soup

We both enjoyed cooking and food and started a supper club between the two of us. One month it would be her turn to host and the next it would be mine. 

A three course dinner for four and sometimes we had themes. One month it might be Italian and another Greek.

She did a beautiful German meal for us once that I still remember to this day. They had lived in Germany just prior to moving to Nova Scotia where we were all living at the time and she really did that country proud with her meal.

You know something is good if 35 years later you are still thinking about it!

Pancake Soup

I have always held a special fondness in my heart for German food.  I lived there when I was a child from the time I was an infant until just before I started school. My sister was actually born there.

My husband and I have also travelled there several times on holidays.  It is a clean, clean country and the people are very friendly and kind. 

The food is amazing. There is no other word for it. I remember having a hot chocolate on one of our first holidays there.  I am sure there was at least a six inch tower of  whipped cream dancing on the top of it!

It was delicious. Who can visit Germany without enjoying a slice of their infamous Black Forest Cake.   It is so delicious. 

We have eaten grilled Bratwurst in buns with mustard on the edge of Lake Titisee. Nothing tasted finer.

One day we enjoyed plate sized schnitzels that would make your mother weep, sides hanging over platters adorned with crisp fresh chips and a beautiful salad on the side.  

Yes, German food is delicious.  Its not overly fancy, but it is incredibly fresh and extremely well done.  They have a great pride in what they present to you at the table, and it shows.


My mother often told us the story about how she arrived in Germany with me, only about 9 months old, on a snowy Christmas Eve in 1956.  She was very tired after having travelled there from Canada on her own to meet my father who was already there.  The airline had lost her luggage and so there we were in a foreign country, where she did not know the language or the people  . . .  and all we had were the clothes which we were wearing.

My father had managed to rent a small set of rooms for us over a Gasthaus, which would be our home until we were able to get more permanent accomodations on the base.  She was in tears, needless to say, afraid and feeling quite lonely being so far away from her family and friends on what is traditionally very much a family occasion.  And she was exhausted.

The family that owned the Gasthaus were celebrating their Christmas downstairs, but the wife/mother took the time to cook a meal for my mother and father, a chicken dinner and then she took charge of me. 

She tore up a sheet to use as diapers,  got me a bottle, giving my teary and bleary eyed mother some rest she so badly needed. My mother never forgot this simple kindness.

Kind, kind people, and this was not long after the War had ended, only 10 years. They were still very much recovering.  

The recipe I am sharing today for Pancake Soup is a German Recipe and it is delicious in its simplicity. It is also known as Crepe Soup or Fladlesuppe.  

In Swabia where it comes from, pancakes are known as Fladle. The recipe has been adapted from a cookery book I have entitled, Grandma's German Cookbook by Birgit Hamm and Linn Schmidt.


To make this soup you must first make a pancake batter.  European pancakes are not like North American Pancakes.  They are thin and very crepe-like.   These are rolled up tightly and then cut into small rounds.

Put into shallow bowls they are simply covered in a good strong broth. You can use Chicken, or beef or vegetable.  The recipe was originally designed to use up leftover broth from the day before.

Today I have used chicken stock which I buy in little gel-capsules. It has a lovely flavour that we both enjoy and I use it a lot. Generally speaking I always have chicken, beef or vegetable pots gel pots in my larder.  Very handy to have.

This soup is incredibly delicious in its simplicity.  A good stock and rolled up sliced pancakes that act almost like hearty little noodles.  Scattered with some finely snipped chives it makes a wonderful light lunch or first course.

You could also garnish it with some wild garlic scapes, thinly sliced (in season) or chopped parsley. I think as well chopped fresh thyme would also be very nice.

I can remember being on holiday in France and walking through some fields on a 13km hike we went on one day.  Every step we too smelled like garlic.  There was wild garlic everywhere. Oh I do so love Europe and I really hope that I will get a chance to travel there again on holiday.

Pancake Soup

 I really hope that you will be inspired to try this soup.  Don't let its simplicity or simple list of ingredients put you off. It is a true gem of a recipe and a wonderful testimony to a people who know how to make the most out of what they have been given.

Its comforting and delicious and a true pleasure to eat.  I think also that children would really enjoy this simple soup.  Pancake Soup, its a good thing, not to coin Martha Stewart or anything.  Make it. You will love it.

Pancake Soup

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Pancake Soup
Yield: 4
Author: Marie Rayner
prep time: 15 Mcook time: 15 Mtotal time: 30 M
This is also known as Crepe Soup or Fladlesuppe. German in origin it was developed to be able to use up leftover sock. Rolled up pancakes, sliced into coins act as noodles. Its quite simple but extremely delicious!

Ingredients:

For the pancakes:
  • 2/3 cup of plain flour (100g)
  • 2 large free range eggs
  • 1 1/3 cup whole milk (300ml)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
You will also need:
  • butter for greasing the pan
  • 1 bunch chives, finely snipped
  • 4 cups (960ml) hot chicken, beef or vegetable stock
  • black pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Begin by making the pancakes.  Measure the flour into a bowl along with the salt and nutmeg.  Beat in the milk and the eggs until you have a smooth, lump-free batter. Let stand for 15 minutes.
  2. Heat a skillet (I found a six inch skillet worked best for me.) Butter with a tiny bit of butter. Using a soup ladle, pour in just enough batter to cover the bottom of the pan in a thin layer. Cook until beginning to brown, flip over and cook for a further 30 seconds.  Remove to a plate and repeat until you have used all the batter up.  Keep warm.
  3. Roll the pancakes up tightly and slice crosswise into thin rounds. 
  4. Evenly divide the warm pancakes between four shallow heated soup or pasta bowls.  Divide the hot stock between the bowls. Sprinkle with pepper and chopped chives.  Serve immediately.
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Created using The Recipes Generator


Pancake Soup

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Marie Rayner
6 Comments
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6 comments:

  1. How interesting. I'm always excited to try something that is totally new to me and this is something I've never heard of. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Perfect for those times when we may be a little peckish.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Katy, its surprisingly delicious! xoxo

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  3. Thank you so much for the recipe!These are simple and fast to prepare and everyone enjoyed them!

    ReplyDelete

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