Aebleskivers? Yes aebleskivers!
I first discovered these delicious morsels on a trip to Solvang, California a few years ago. Solvang is the Danish Capital of America and just so cute and charming! Many places in town serve them but my favorite is the Solvang Restaurant, which was featured in the movie "Sideways". You can order them in the restaurant and they also have a to go window outside where you can grab and go!
I'm sure at this point many of you reading this blog have questions like...but what are they? Where did they come from?
According to lore when the Vikings were roaming up and down the coasts of Europe and the waters of the Atlantic, one band of these Vikings had been particularly hard hit in battle, so, when they got back on their ship with their horn helmets and shields all dented and banged up, they decided to have one of their favorite dishes to help them regain their strength, pancakes!! Years and years ago they did not have s frying pans, so, they greased their shields and poured the pancake batter on them over the fire and aebleskivers were born!
Now you must be wondering...but what do they taste like?? They are a tasty breakfast confection, like a pancake ball often served with raspberry or lingonberry jam and powdered sugar. I love them because they also have a spicy taste to them of cardamon and mace. Besides for breakfast I think these would be fun to serve for a tea party or even a savory version could be made by adding herbs and cheese to the batter. The pan itself can be purchased in Solvang (where I grabbed mine) or Williams-Sonoma sells them also. My favorite batter mix is from the Solvang Restaurant but other recipes are on the web. The closest I've been to matching the Solvang recipe is below:
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
- A pinch of ground cardamom
- 1/4 mace
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup milk
- About 2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine
1. In a bowl, mix flour with sugar, baking powder, cardamom, and salt. In a small bowl, beat egg to blend with milk and 2 tablespoons butter. Add liquids to dry ingredients and stir until evenly moistened. Let mix sit for ten minutes
2. Place an aebleskiver pan over medium-low heat. When pan is hot enough to make a drop of water dance, brush pancake cups lightly with melted butter and fill each to slightly below the rim with batter.
3. In about 1 1/2 minutes, thin crusts will form on bottoms of balls (centers will still be wet); pierce the crust with a bamboo skewer and gently pull shell to rotate the pancake ball until about half the cooked portion is above the cup rim and uncooked batter flows down into cup. Cook until crust on bottom of ball is again firm enough to pierce, about another minute, then rotate ball with skewer until the ridge formed as the pancake first cooked is on top. Cook, turning occasionally with skewer, until balls are evenly browned and no longer moist in the center, another 10 to 12 minutes. Check by piercing center of last pancake ball added to pan with skewer--it should come out clean--or by breaking the ball open slightly; if balls start to get too brown, turn heat to low until they are cooked in the center. Lift cooked balls from pan and serve hot and with raspberry or lingonberry jam and powdered sugar.
Also check out the Solvang Restaurant's site and be sure to visit them if you find yourself in Solvang!