Inspired by the hotcakes served at Pittsburgh’s famous Pamela’s Diner, these crepe-style pancakes combine the elegance of French crêpes with the flavor of American diner pancakes. Stuff them with sour cream, fresh strawberries, and a sprinkling of sweet brown sugar for a unique and delicious breakfast treat.
for the pancake batter:
- 1 cup (227 grams) milk
- ½ tsp. (1.5 grams) active dry yeast
- ¾ cup (90 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp. (12 grams) granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. (4 grams) baking powder
- ¼ tsp. (2 grams) salt
- 2 Tbsp. (25 grams) vegetable oil
- 1 large egg (50 grams)
- 2 Tbsp. (25 grams) vegetable oil, for cooking
- 2 Tbsp. (28 grams) unsalted butter, for cooking
for the filling:
- ¾ cup (170 grams) sour cream
- 2 Tbsp. (27 grams) brown sugar
- 1 qt. (668 grams) fresh strawberries, sliced
- Make the pancake batter. Heat the milk on the stove or in the microwave so that it's lukewarm (about 105°F/41°C. An instant read thermometer comes in handy here.) Pour the warm milk into a small, heat-safe bowl and immediately sprinkle the yeast over the warm milk. Let the milk and yeast sit for 5 minutes while you move on to the next step.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
- Check your milk and yeast. After resting for 5 minutes, the yeast should appear foamy on top of the milk. If the yeast does appear foamy, continue with the recipe. If it does not appear foamy, see my tips for troubleshooting yeast in the Notes section below.
- Add the milk and yeast plus 2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil to the flour mixture. Stir gently until combined.
- Let the batter rest. Cover the bowl loosely with a lid or plastic wrap, leaving a small opening for air to escape. Let the batter sit at room temperature for 3 hours. It will become slightly bubbly.
- After the batter has had time to rest at room temperature and become bubbly, transfer the bowl of batter to the fridge to rest overnight.
- Cook the pancakes. In the morning, just before cooking the pancakes, remove the dough from the fridge. The mixture may have separated slightly; this is okay. Beat the egg in a small bowl and add it to the batter, stirring gently until combined.
- Add 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil and 1 teaspoon of butter to a 10-inch skillet. Heat the skillet over medium heat and swirl it around so the melting butter and oil coat the bottom of the skillet.
- Add about ⅓ cup of the batter to the skillet and quickly swirl the skillet around so the batter coats the bottom of the skillet and forms a round pancake. Cook the pancake for 2 to 2 ½ minutes, until the underside is golden brown. Flip the pancake with a spatula and cook for another 1 ½ to 2 minutes so that both sides are golden brown. Transfer the pancake to a plate. Repeat the process with the remaining batter, adding more oil and butter to the skillet before cooking each pancake.
- Serve the pancakes. To serve, spread sour cream (about 2 Tablespoons per pancake) onto each pancake in a line down the middle. Top the sour cream with fresh strawberry slices and a sprinkle of brown sugar (about 1 teaspoon per pancake). Fold the sides of each pancake up over the filling and serve.
Storage: These pancakes are best served fresh; however, any leftovers not yet stuffed with filling can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one day. Reheat leftover pancakes briefly in a 300°F (149°C) oven or toaster oven before serving.
Troubleshooting Yeast: In Step #1, yeast is added to warm milk to “proof” the yeast. This is done to ensure that the yeast is alive before using it in the recipe. The yeast should become foamy after it sits in the warm milk for 5 minutes. If the yeast does not become foamy after 5 minutes, give it 5 more minutes. If after 10 minutes there are still no bubbles among the milk and yeast, then the yeast is dead and should not be used. This is likely due to one of two reasons: 1) either the yeast was not properly stored or is beyond its expiration date or 2) the milk used was too hot and killed the yeast. Try again with fresh yeast and be extra careful to heat the milk to the proper temperature.
More Filling Ideas: Instead of filling the pancakes with fresh berries and sour cream, they can be served like classic pancakes with butter and maple syrup or filled like traditional crepes with jam, lemon curd, cinnamon sugar, whipped cream and berries, Nutella, and more!
Don’t skip refrigerating the batter before baking. This stint in the fridge gives the flour time to hydrate.
Be sure to add oil and butter to the pan before cooking each pancake. This is key to creating the beautifully browned, crispy edges and also ensures that your pancakes won’t stick to the pan when cooking.
If you’re cooking pancakes for a crowd and want to serve them all at once (rather than one at a time as they cook), preheat your oven to 200°F (93°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper just before you begin cooking the pancakes. As you finish cooking each pancake, place it onto the lined baking sheet in the warm oven to keep the pancakes warm. Then serve all of the pancakes when you’ve finished cooking the batter.
Recipe adapted from King Arthur Baking.
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: Cooking
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: crepe, pancake