2016 is a new year and a new collaboration with Shannon over at A Periodic Table. Last year, we spun our way through the Jeni’s books and this year we have something new in store. We will be baking our way through the Baked Occasions book month by month in our new series Baked, Occasionally. Each month we will select one recipe (the same recipe) from the book and bake it together word-for-word from the book. Then, we’ll compare our results and, if we see room for improvement, we’ll tweak the recipe and make it again until it’s just right!
This month’s recipe was the Kitchen Sink Dutch Baby.
Round 1 yielded tasty results, but we saw some room for improvement.
- Very easy to make
- Comes together quickly
- Great for breakfast or dessert
- Not much fluff
- Not enough stuff
- Flavor needs a boost
Issue #1: WHERE’S THE FLUFF?
My usual dutch baby recipe has lots of floof with peaks and valley and all sorts of poof. This one fell a bit, well, flat. I chalked this up to the fact that my pan was a bit larger than their recommended size (11.25″ vs the recommended 10″), but Shannon used a 10-inch skillet and still did not have the expected poof. That being said, even the pictures in their book were pretty flat.
We decided to try to remedy this by pouring the batter directly into a screaming-hot pan instead of letting the pan cool for 5 minutes. This corrected Shannon’s lack of floof but mine remained pretty flat. I think I would need an extra egg to reconcile the larger pan, and by the time we add an extra egg we need extra flour, etc, and we’d have a whole new recipe, which is not what we wanted here.
Issue #2: WHERE’S THE
Now, if I was naming this I probably would have called it a “banana dutch baby” because the term “kitchen sink” makes it sound like you throw in, ya know, “everything but the kitchen sink”. While you certainly could do this, their recipe calls for bananas, chocolate chips, and optional nuts. Nothing about this was very “kitchen sink-y” if you ask me, but nobody asked me.
However, Shannon and I both agreed that there should at least be enough banana to cover the majority of the bottom of the pan. We added one (or two) more bananas to fix this issue. Also, a “scant 1/4 cup” of chocolate chips isn’t basically how much I eat when I’m making a recipe that includes chocolate chips, so we we upped this from 1 1/2 ounces to easily 2 – 2.5 ounces. Think a very generous 1/4 cup scoop, maybe even closer to 1/3 cup.
Issue #3: Flavor enhancement.
While delicious, Shannon and I both had the feeling that it could use a little “oomph” – We resolved to throw a half teaspoon of cinnamon in for round two to take it a bit closer to that “banana bread” flavor, but not so much cinnamon that it would turn into a “cinnamon roll” type thing. We both loved the extra warmth it added to the dish.
Forever the tinkerers (and naturally heavy-handed with vanilla) we both really wanted to up the vanilla in this recipe. The batter on its own doesn’t have a whole lot going on and definitely benefited from the boost of an extra dash of vanilla.
Lastly, The recipe called for plain toasted nuts and I only had raw. Since I was going to have to give them a quick toast in the oven anyway, I let myself tinker a bit because plain nuts are boring and nobody likes boring nuts. Knowing they were heading for a breakfasty dutch baby, I added a healthy amount of maple syrup and nice dash of salt to them.
This caused issues only because it was hard to photograph the finished dish without eating all of the nuts… Oops? When I shared this modification with Shannon she jumped for joy and decided to make the same adjustment for round 2. You may want to make extras of these because they really are a delightful treat.
You can check out Shannon’s post right here!
Below you will find our round 2 recipe, which is the Baked recipe including our adjustments. If you’re interested in joining us for March, on the first Monday in March we will be posting the Chocolate Texas Sheet Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting. I hijacked this choice because March is my birthday month. And because chocolate and peanut butter. I mean, you know there’s no way we weren’t going to make that.
- 2 cups assorted nuts (I used walnuts and pecans)
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil (melted) or other neutral oil
- 2-3 tablespoons maple syrup (enough to coat the nuts)
- 1 teaspoon sugar or brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, to taste
- 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 to 3 ripe medium bananas, sliced 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1/2 cup whole milk, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour (can use regular, if desired)
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 3 Tablespoons brown sugar, firmly packed
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 ounces chocolate chips (a generous 1/4 cup)
- 2 Tablespoons confectioners' sugar
- maple syrup
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Toss the nuts with the oil, syrup, sugar, and salt.
- Spread in an even layer and toast for about 5-10 minutes, tossing halfway through.
- Remove and set aside to cool. (Can be made a day or two in advance)
- Preheat oven to 425F, place your 10-inch oven-proof skillet (I used cast iron) in the oven while it preheats.
- While oven is preheating, add the eggs, milk, and vanilla extract to a blender. Blend on high for about 45 seconds until foamy.
- Add the sugar, flours, salt, and cinnamon and blend mixture for another 30 seconds until frothy. Set aside.
- When oven is preheated, add the butter and allow to melt.
- Once the butter is completely melted, add the sliced bananas and stir to coat. Return to oven for a minute or two to soften and brown just ever so slightly on the bottom.
- Carefully remove the skillet from the oven and pour the batter into the skillet, on top of the banana slices. Sprinkle with chocolate chips and return the pan to the oven.
- Bake for 17 to 20 minutes until the pancake is slightly puffed and browned on top.