Aebleskiver

Aebleskiver (pronounced able-skeever) are the strangest pancakes I’ve ever eaten…also the most delicious! They’re Danish, and I was introduced to them by my friend Philip Wilson, who is a) tall and b) of Danish descent. That makes him a Great Dane. Anyway, aebleskiver are made in a special cast-iron pan with 7 indentations — the result is a puffed ball-shaped pancake.

Meps with a bowl of aebleskiver, the pan, and the special knitting needles
Meps with a bowl of aebleskiver, the pan, and the special knitting needles

This is the recipe we used to make them, based on one found on the internet from Lindgren’s Bed & Breakfast in Minnesota. I hope the illustrations will help you understand the process.

4 eggs, separated
2 T sugar
1/2 t salt
2 T vegetable oil
2 C buttermilk
1 t baking soda
1 t baking powder
2 C all-purpose flour
Oil or butter for the pan

Beat the egg whites until stiff. In another bowl, beat the rest of the ingredients until smooth, then fold in the egg whites.

Heat the special pan over moderate heat, and melt about 1/8 t of butter in each of the holes. Swirl the pan to coat with the butter.

Aebleskiver pan with butter melting in the holes
Aebleskiver pan with butter melting in the holes

Fill each indentation about three-fourths of the way with batter. Now carefully watch the edges, so you’ll notice when they are starting to brown.

You’ll use a pair of knitting needles (traditional) or chopsticks or forks to turn them over. The trick to turning them is not pulling them around, like you would do with a spatula, but pushing each one down on one side and pulling up a little on the other. That’s why you use two knitting needles.

Sometimes, you can only get them turned partway, then let them brown a little more before turning them the rest of the way.

Test to see if they are done by poking them in the middle with a knitting needle and making sure it comes out dry.

Serve with your favorite decadent assortment of jams, syrups, honey, butter, and whipped cream. We had lemon curd, chili-chocolate sauce, seedless blackberry jam, and whipped cream with this batch. Be careful — the accoutrements can easily overshadow the beautiful aebleskiver!

Philip coats the pan with butter
Philip coats the pan with butter

Carefully ladling batter into the pan
Carefully ladling batter into the pan

Turning aebleskiver with two knitting needles
Turning aebleskiver with two knitting needles

Golden brown aebleskiver, turned about halfway
Golden brown aebleskiver, turned about halfway

After the aebleskiver are turned, the final browning
After the aebleskiver are turned, the final browning