Pannukakku (Finnish Pancakes)

Pannukakku (say it with me: bun-oo-guck-oo) is something I was introduced to when I married into my husbands very Finnish family. They are something, I think, of an acquired taste (at least for me) and I am never quite sure if I like it until I have that first bite. In fact, the first time I had it, I was rather grossed out…you see, pannukakku is a thin, custardy oven pancake comprised of flour, eggs, milk, sugar, salt, and butter. Traditionally, recipes seem to call for a very very small amount of flour, resulting in a very thin, super egg-flavored, floppy thing.

Which is so not my thing, even with the liberal application of jam and/or syrup!

I like my custard thick and firm, my pancakes light and fluffy. Pannukakku is sort of like the bastard stepchild of fallen souffle and pancakes. I’m not a huge fan of fallen souffle, and I LOOOOOVE pancakes, so I’m always like: “why can’t you be more like your father?” and the panukakku is all like “pancakes isn’t my real father”. And then my hubby breaks out the star wars references, “Pannukakku, I am your father…search your feelings yadda yadda yadda,” and breakfast goes downhill. But seriously, whenever we have pannukakku with my hubby’s family, I always find myself wishing it were just a bit different…more solid, less…something…maybe less eggy?

The thing is, I love all the constituent ingredients in pannukakku. I mean, how do you go wrong with the basic building blocks of baking? You can’t! Yet somehow, pannukakku just rubs me the wrong way, so I decided to figure it out. Well, really, I was standing in the grocery store in front of a giant eggnog display, thinking about making brinner (aw yeah, breakfast for dinner), and all of a sudden I went from pancakes to eggnog pancakes to eggnog pannukakku!!! I nabbed a bottle of ‘nog and trotted back to my kitchen with visions of sugarplums pancake batter dancing through my head!

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To address the issues I have with the consistency, I added a bit more flour than the amount called for in the recipe my hubby’s family uses, and I have to say, I really enjoyed this batch! I made a quarter recipe (this doesn’t exactly reheat well) and it fit my little 8″ long oval baking dish perfectly.

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The pancake is really easy to make, just whip everything into a batter and bake for a really really really long time. Seriously, your kitchen will smell awesome looooong before the pancake is set, but it’s worth the wait, because eventually this will come out of your oven!

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And then it will fall a bit. But that’s OK, it won’t last long enough to worry about it!

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And so I give you…

Eggnog Pannukakku (serves 4-6)

  • 4 c. eggnog
  • 4 eggs, well beaten
  • 1-1/2 c. flour
  • 4 T. sugar (optional)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 T. butter
  1. Place butter in a 9×13″ baking pan (or two if you like thinner pancakes). Place pan in oven while preheating to 350 F.
  2. Combine eggnog, eggs, sugar, and salt in large mixing bowl. Whisk in flour a little bit at a time, making sure there are no lumps.
  3. Remove pan(s) from oven and swirl with butter to coat bottom and partway up the sides. (Be careful–pans will be HOT!)
  4. Gently pour batter into pan(s). Bake pancake at 350 F for 40-50 minutes, till pancake is puffed and golden at the edges, with golden spots beginning to appear on the surface. Let cool a few minutes before serving.
  5. Top with syrup or jam of your choice!  Nyom!

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