It’s nearly the second best day of the year (after Christmas) – pancake day! I love pancakes in all forms and make them regularly, for breakfast, dessert, dinner (savory or sweet ones!) or a snack; they are infinitely adaptable, easy to make and one of my favourite foods. I realised that I hadn’t really posted any dessert pancakes on the blog, just breakfasty ones; so I am remedying that with these indulgent pancakes with caramel oranges and almond ice cream.
These are crepe style pancakes filled with sliced oranges which have been soaked in a caramel sauce and topped with a scoop of home-made almond ice cream and a scattering of toasted flaked almonds for a bit of crunch. The flavour combination is perfect, so good that I ate two helpings in one go! These would be equally good for a classy dinner party dessert or for an indulgent brunch, or just because it’s Monday. They are pretty easy to make, but you do need to start the day before you want to serve them as the custard for the ice cream needs to chill before it is churned and the caramel oranges need to sit in the fridge overnight for the flavours to meld (it will keep in the fridge for a couple of days). The actual crepes are very quick and simple to make, but you can also make them in advance if you prefer, freeze them with a sheet of parchment in between each one then re-heat them when needed.
I originally wanted to use blood oranges for these but wasn’t able to find any; if you are able to get your hands on some then I think that they would be even more delicious and impressive looking! If you don’t fancy making the almond ice cream (though I urge you to do so – it is extremely good), then these would also work well with a good quality shop bought vanilla ice cream to save a bit of effort.
OXO were kind enough to send me all the equipment I needed to make my pancakes with – a stainless steel non-slip mixing bowl for making the batter in, a 3-in-1 egg separator which came in super handy for separating out the yolks for the almond ice cream and stopped me from getting bits of shell in the custard (I’m forever having to fish bits of eggshell out of things), a microwave safe squeeze and pour measuring jug for measuring out the milk for the batter (these things are great, I use them for melting chocolate in the microwave as well as for measuring – so handy!), a sturdy balloon whisk which made short work of whisking up the pancake batter, a flexible silicone pancake turner for flipping the pancakes – this is my favourite tool, I am rubbish at flipping pancakes by hand so have to use a spatula, this one is extra wide so you can turn the pancakes without tearing them and as it is silicone it wont scratch your pan.
For serving they also sent me a trigger ice cream scoop for easily and neatly serving the almond ice cream, and a silicone lemon squeezer and storer which filters out the seeds and pulp when you squeeze your lemon then can be used to store the other half in the fridge without it drying out; this is so useful as I always have half a lemon wrapped in clingfilm in the fridge. I am consistently impressed with the quality of OXO products, they are sturdily built, innovative and durable and I am gradually replacing all of my old kitchen tools with OXO ones because I like them so much!
Pancakes With Caramel Oranges & Almond Ice Cream
Serves 4-6 (makes about 10 crepes).
Begin the day before you want to serve the pancakes.
Almond Ice Cream:
- 135 g (1 cup + 2Tbsp) ground almonds
- 300 ml (1 + 1/4 cups) double (heavy) cream
- 500 ml (2 + 1/8 cups) full fat milk
- 180 g (3/4 cup + 2Tbsp) granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
- 5 egg yolks
- couple drops almond extract (optional)
- 6 navel oranges
- 225 g (1 cup) caster (superfine) sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick (optional)
- 225 ml (3/4 + 1/8 cup) water
- 150 g (1 + 1/4 cups) plain flour
- 2 eggs
- 15 g (1 tbsp) unsalted butter melted
- 350 ml (1 + 1/2 cups) milk
- toasted flaked almonds to serve
Heat the oven to 170C/325F/gas mark 3. Spread the almonds out on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 5-10 minutes, keeping a close eye on them, until lightly golden brown.
Put the cream, milk, vanilla, half of the sugar and the toasted almonds in a saucepan. Heat over a low heat, stirring occasionally, until almost boiling, then remove from the heat and set aside for 30 minutes for the almonds to infuse.
Put the egg yolks into a bowl with the other half of the sugar and whisk until smooth and pale. Re-heat the almond and milk mixture until steaming then gradually pour it into the egg yolks while whisking constantly.
Return the mixture to the pan and place over a low heat. Stir constantly until thickened, do not let it boil! The mixture should reach 75C and not exceed 80C. Pour the custard through a sieve into a bowl; press on the almonds left in the sieve to extract as much flavour as possible then discard them.
Add a couple of drops of almond extract if you think that the almond flavour isn't strong enough then cover the bowl and allow to cool. Refrigerate until completely cold then churn in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Using a sharp knife, slice the ends off each orange off to reveal the flesh. Place the orange upright on a cutting board and cut downward to remove all the peel and white pith, following the contours of the fruit. Cut the orange into thin slices, spread out in a shallow baking dish and set aside.
Place the sugar, half the water and the cinnamon stick in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan and stir over a medium heat until the sugar dissolves.
Stop stirring, turn up the heat and allow the sugar to cook, swirling the pan occasionally but never stirring, until the sugar has turned a deep amber.
Immediately remove the pan from the heat and carefully pour in the rest of the water (stand back as the mixture will sputter and spit violently). Stir until any lumps of caramel have dissolved.
Pour the caramel over the orange slices, turn to coat then cover and place in the fridge overnight.
Place the flour in a large bowl, make a well in the middle and add the eggs, butter and a splash of the milk. Whisk until smooth then gradually whisk in the remaining milk. Allow the batter to rest for 15 minutes.
Heat a small knob of butter in a crepe or frying pan and wipe with a piece of kitchen roll.
Pour a ladleful of batter into the pan and swirl the pan so that the batter runs to the edges. Cook for a couple of minutes then flip the pancake over and cook for another minute until golden. Repeat with the rest of the batter.
Serve the pancakes with the caramel oranges, a scoop of almond ice cream and a scattering of toasted flaked almonds.
This post is sponsored by OXO, all opinions are my own; thank you for supporting the brands that keep Domestic Gothess running.