Savory Dutch Baby with Spring Greens

This yummy treat is also known as Finnish pancake. I wouldn't be surprised if it had other names also. It's simple and delicious. You can make a sweet version (I'll explain in the Notes), but I love the savory kind. I can eat it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. 

I have adapted this recipe from The Cast Iron Skillet Cookbook, by Sharon Kramis & Julie Kramis Hearn. This recipe is indeed perfectly suited to a cast iron skillet or a small Dutch Oven. It serves 4.

Dutch Baby in the Dutch Oven. Who knows how these things get named.

Dutch Baby in the Dutch Oven. Who knows how these things get named.

Savory Dutch Baby

3 tablespoons butter
8 extra-large eggs*
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
2 cups filling - for example:
       1 cup grated cheese and 1 cup wilted spinach
       1 cup wilted nettles and 1 cup caramelized onions
       1 3/4 cup wilted sorrel and 1/4 cup chopped chives
 

Preheat the oven to 425°F.

Prepare the fillings first. This is a very forgiving recipe, so you don't have to be exact. To wilt the greens, heat a pan (I usually use a cast iron skillet) on medium-high heat with a splash of oil or butter. When the pan is hot, toss in the greens and immediately pour about 1/4 cup of water (or lemon juice or vinegar if you like tangy) over the greens. They will steam and curl up quickly. Stir them around to steam them evenly. When they are thoroughly limp but still brightish in color, remove the greens from the pan to a bowl, draining them and discarding extra liquid in the pan. You can also blanch the nettles in salted, boiling water for a few minutes (and then drain them) instead of wilting them - as always, with nettles, remember to wear gloves or use tongs!

Melt the 3 tablespoons butter in the skillet. While it is melting, whisk together the eight eggs, flour, and milk. You can also blitz them in a blender or food processor if you want a really smooth texture. 

Fold the fillings you are using into the batter, and pour the mixture into the skillet. Place the skillet in the oven and bake about 20-25 minutes, until the top is golden brown and puffy. 

As soon as it is done, slice it up and serve!

Notes

*You can substitute eggs of any size, but you want to have about the same volume of eggs. Eight extra-large chicken eggs is usually around 2 cups - see this article in the Portland Press Herald's Source for more info about cooking with varied egg sizes.

To make a sweet version, omit the fillings. Mix up the batter and bake as directed. Serve with your favorite pancake topper - maple syrup, blueberry sauce, lemon juice and powdered sugar...!