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I'm about to make some pancakes(1) for my daughter, and will want to make some for me and my wife this evening (in about 3-4hrs), since using a single egg should make at ~six I'll have too much batter for the one or two I wish to make now, so I'd like to use the same mix for both instances.

Is it better to store the mixed batter for 3hrs and then cook this evening's fresh or should I cook them now, store the cooked pancakes and reheat this evening?

What's the best way to store the batter/prepared pancakes?

Finally, what should I take in to account when cooking/reheating the stored batter/pancakes?


1. I know the term has different meanings, so to be clear, I mean pancakes like these.

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In the US, we would probably call it a crepe. –  michael Mar 8 '11 at 16:50
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+1 For clarifying what a pancake is :-) –  TFD Mar 8 '11 at 21:38
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That Delia recipe the BBC posted has been knocking about for 30-odd years, except they edited it. It always used to say put the batter in the fridge, before adding the melted butter, for a few hours (at least half hour), and then add the melted butter right before cooking. Always cook fresh. –  Orbling Mar 9 '11 at 0:35

2 Answers 2

up vote 12 down vote accepted

Batter for pancakes is often nicer if it is left in the fridge for a few hours. I'd make them fresh tonight with the batter you're making for the couple you want now. Enjoy!

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Well, the first are made and the remaining batter has gone in the fridge. I had half the daughter's second one (she "didn't like them" after one and a half...oh well, means I get a taster :9) so we'll see how this evening's compare... –  DMA57361 Mar 8 '11 at 17:57
    
Yep, this worked nicely. Needed a quick re-mix as it came out the fridge as it had separated a little bit, but the final result was good! –  DMA57361 Mar 8 '11 at 20:20
    
I'm pleased they worked out well, can't beat pancake day! –  nixy Mar 8 '11 at 20:41

It won't matter for the style of pancake that you're doing, but for ones that use chemical leavening like you'd find in the US, there are issues with holding the batter for long periods:

If you're using baking soda as a leavening, it'll have already given its all by the time you cook it hours later ... but you'd have to add baking powder to compensate when it's time, as there might not be enough acid left for baking soda. Baking powder in the batter isn't as much of a problem if it's double-acting, where it'll give some leavening when it gets wet, and again as it gets warm. Of course, you don't want to add too much baking powder, as it can give a metallic taste.

For the style you're looking to do (crepes, pannekoeken, etc), it's often better to let the batter sit for a whole as nixy said (much better than letting the cooked product sit), but my only issue is that each round of baking you almost always lose the first one as you're trying to get the timing/heat adjusted correctly.

(lose in the "less than ideal, I'll go and eat this one when no one's looking" sense, not the "unfit for human consumption" type)

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@Joe - glad I'm not the only one who has the less than ideal first pancake/crepe! –  justkt Mar 8 '11 at 17:47
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@Joe: The English rarely make leavened pancakes, particularly not on pancake day. If you say pancake to a British person, it means a slightly thicker format of a crepe, with lemon juice and sugar as a rule. –  Orbling Mar 9 '11 at 0:33
    
@justkt: the French always say that the first crepe is 'for the pan'; it often doesn't work out right. I take it as a point of pride that my first crepe in the pan is always good, as good as the last one (I usually have to make a dozen or more at a time). –  daniel Mar 9 '11 at 4:26
    
@daniel, surely that's just a matter of the pan being the right temp, no? I'd imagine if it's too hot, the batter cools it down and if it's not hot enough, it continues to heat while the first one cooks. So by #2, everything is the proper temp. If it's the proper temp to begin with, then the first one should be fine. I can't think of any other reason the first one would fail. –  yossarian Mar 9 '11 at 18:47
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@daniel The first pancake isn't for the pan... it's for the cook! –  philosodad Mar 13 '11 at 14:00

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