I lived in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, for many years, and whenever friends came into town one of their first requests was to stop for brunch at the local pancake house. "Pannekoeken," as they are called there, are more similar to crepes than your standard American pancake. They are typically served with syrup and powdered sugar (like French toast), and they can come with savory ingredients instead of just sweet (like crepes).
I've come to understand that some people think a Dutch baby is the same as a Dutch pancake. Not so. You'd be hard pressed to even find a Dutch baby in any Dutch restaurant; the concept is more similar to German pancakes (I know, who knew the whole pancake industry was so diversified), and was made popular in America. The Dutch baby name is believed to be a reference to the Pennsylvania Dutch, German immigrants to the United States.
Despite all this pancake confusion, I actually think Dutch babies are a fabulous brunch item that are fun to share with a few friends on a sunny weekend morning. If you have a good cast iron pan, they're not hard to make, and you can have a lot of fun with them.
Today, we're bringing an Oregon twist to this international dish with Oregon marionberries. The marionberry is a twist on a blackberry and has a unique flavor that I love.
Lemon Marionberry Dutch Baby
Lemon Sugar Ingredients:
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- grated zest of 1 lemon
- 1 cup frozen marionberries
- 1 cup frozen blueberries
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 vanilla bean (optional)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 3 large eggs at room temperature
- 2/3 cup whole milk at room temperature
- 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 vanilla bean (seeds)
- 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon grated nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces
First, prepare the lemon sugar. Grate/zest one lemon; stir together sugar and zest in a small bowl. Set aside.
Secondly, prep the Dutch baby itself. Put a cast iron skillet on middle rack of oven and preheat oven to 450°F. Beat eggs with an electric mixer at high speed until pale and frothy, then beat in milk, flour, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt and continue to beat until smooth, about 1 minute more (batter will be thin).
Add butter to hot skillet and melt, swirling to coat. Add batter and immediately return skillet to oven. Bake until puffed and golden-brown, 18 to 25 minutes.
While your Dutch baby is in the oven, prepare your Oregon berry compote. Juice the lemon into a non-metallic mixing bowl, add frozen berries, stir to coat and set aside for 10 minutes to allow the berries and lemon mixture to thaw a bit. Add sugar, vanilla extract, vanilla beans. Stir completely. Over medium-high heat, bring to a light simmer and stir occasionally, until reduced by half. Remove from heat and stir in butter. Keep warm until ready to serve.
Once Dutch baby is golden brown, remove from oven and sprinkle with lemon sugar. Drizzle with Oregon berry compote. Serve piping hot.
Although we've talked about the confusing historical background of the Dutch baby, you can still give your brunch table a bit of Dutch flair. Get some tulips in large mason jars for a simple pop of color, and serve your Dutch baby with a "koffie vekeerd" -- although this means "coffee wrong" in Dutch, it's basically a cafe au lait -- which, if you're not familiar, is hot coffee with hot milk.
This feature was brought to you by the Oregon Raspberry and Blackberry Commission. We love promoting and supporting local agriculture here in Oregon, and who doesn't love berries? Frozen Oregon berries taste just as good as fresh -- maybe even better since they're flash frozen to preserve all the good juices and flavors. If you're looking for Oregon berries or marionberries locally, here is is a list of brands to look for.