Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Polish elder pancakes

Polish: bez czarny
Upper Sorbian: hołdračk
Bosnian: zovha
Arabic: بيلسان
Occitan: saüc
Albanian: shtogu
Galician: bieito
Lithuanian: juoduogis šeivamedis
Quechua: yana rayan
Cornish: skawenn

When you smell black elder's blossoms during an evening walk, you know it's late spring. In Poland the blossoms are fried in a batter and eaten with powdered sugar; in north Germany a soup from the berries is very popular; in Romania you can even buy a kind of Fanta with elderbery taste, and in Hungary elderberry brandy; in central Europe it is quite common to prepare a thick syrup from the blossom and lemon juice; you drink it dissolved with water or add to flavour your tea. Blossoms are dried and prepared as an infusion, too. This spring I dried some panicles which I am gonna drink in the wintertime, I also made a syrup and pancakes from the elder. Today I am gonna share the recipes for the elder pancakes, in Polish: placki z kwiatow bzu.

1 cup flour & 1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup sparkling, carbonated water
1 small pack vanilla sugar
1 egg white
1/2 - 1 cup elder blossoms
(eventually: 1 tablespoon lemon juice)

1. "Crumble" the panicles of elder to separate blossoms from the stalks. Some people deep the whole panicles into the batter but the taste of the stalks can destroy the whole pancake... I mean, in my opinion my way of making pancakes is much better than the fritters-methode... But it's up to you... My advice is to use blossoms only. It takes some more time but it is worth it! When you choose ripe paniles, blossoms will divide easily from the stalks!

2. Sift the flour with baking powder. Add water, milk and vanilla sugar. Combine. Beat the egg white and add gently to the batter. Add elder blossoms, they should be all covered with the batter. Now you can add lemon juice, too.

3. Fry! Just like regular pancakes. Serve sprinkled with powdered sugar, with homemade marmalade, honey, butter, maple syrup, dandelion syrup, manjar (How to do this Latin American spread? You can learn it from my recipe for Peruvian suspiro), nutella... So many possibilities!

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