Stop Eating Cold, Rubbery Pancakes
Weekend pancakes are more than a fluffy breakfast treat. They’re a symbol. A declaration of relaxation. No one plans for pancakes when they have 20 minutes to throw on clothes and run out the door to catch the bus. Pancakes take time to make because in most 8-10 inch frying pans, you can only cook one or two at a time. For a batch of 16, you might be standing at the stove for a good 30 minutes. While this is leisure cooking at its finest, that kind of downtime isn’t ideal for your cakes. Stop them from getting humid and cold with the help of a cooling rack.
It’s natural to set up a plate next to your frying pan. Each finished cake is transferred from the hot pan over to a room temperature, non-porous plate. The next cake is stacked right on top, again and again, building up steam, for a half an hour. This is a great technique to use if you want cold, wet pancakes. If you’re not into that sort of thing, grab a wire cooling rack, set it on top of a large sheet tray, and slide the apparatus into the oven. Set the oven to a low temperature of 200°F, or as close to that as you can get, and start working your pancake magic.
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As each cake finishes, transfer it down into the oven and onto the wire rack. Line up the pancakes flat on the rack so they each have their own designated space. You can overlap them slightly if you have a smaller cooling rack, but stacking them will lead to moisture retention (and not in a good way). If you lay the pancakes out mindfully, you can fit about 16 medium-sized pancakes on a 15-inch cooling rack. When the last pancake leaves the frying pan, turn off the oven and take out the tray. Each one of these fluffy morsels will feel like they just finished frying at the same time, and without the humid, slippery bottoms.
The wire rack allows air to flow around the cakes freely and prevents the trapped humidity that occurs from stacking on a plate. This keeps the edges nice and crispy if you happen to fry your pancakes in butter (which I highly recommend you to do), and a low oven keeps them warm without drying them out or over cooking them. Take your leisure pancakes seriously. You deserve fluffy-centered, crispy-edged, toasty-warm pancakes to dive into, even 30 minutes after they’ve left the pan.
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