Monday, 3 March 2014

Cooking with Booze: Pancake Day with Appleton Estate Jamaica Rum

Who are you calling a tosser?

Oh right, yeah, it's only flippin' Pancake Day tomorrow! So enough of these crêpe-y jokes, let's get down to business.

The lovely folks behind Appleton Estate Jamaica Rum have kindly sent over some samples to use for their alternative Shrove Tuesday treat. Whilst the classic lemon and sugar combo never fails - ever - this rum butter pancake recipe is a force to be reckoned with; it's truly scRUMptious (sorry, I couldn't resist).

To give you a little info, rum production at Appleton Estate can be dated back to 1749. The sugar cane that's used is grown on the Estate, it's distilled in copper pot stills unique to the Estate and, in that glorious Jamaican climate, the rum matures in oak barrels before being blended and bottled. Time-honoured traditions and secrets in production have been handed down from generation to generation, and Appleton now boasts a range of rums which venture up to a pricey 50 year old bottle. If you're flash with the cash, this £3,500 Independence Reserve is available from The Whisky Exchange. However, the much more affordable V/X used in this recipe - an award winning blend of 15 choice aged rums - is available in selected Sainsbury's and Tesco's at around the £20 mark.

It has scents of sugar, spice, and all things nice – namely dried fruits, banana and orange peel. It’s sweet and powerful aroma doesn’t quite translate in the drinking though, so I’d probably not choose this one to sip neat. Either in a cocktail or topped with a mixer would be best, as it would highlight the flavours and bring out more of the molasses that we associate with Jamaican rums.

As for the pancakes, I followed the recipe that Appleton Estate sent over exactly (though, in my eagerness, I forgot the brown sugar at the end – I don’t know if it’s necessary) and the results were too good for words. I might have eaten too much of the rum butter on its own – it was a sneaky spoon/fridge this-is-a-low-moment kind of thing. I could easily see me serving this with a scoop of ice cream or some stewed fruits (apricots would be perfect), though it’s pretty luxurious as it is. The only thing I might recommend is a few gratings of orange zest in the batter; there was orange juice in there, but I couldn’t really pick up on it once cooked. Anyway, here you go..

Appleton Estate Jamaica Rum Butter Pancakes
Serves 4

  • 175g butter
  • 110g sifted icing sugar
  • 3 tbsp Appleton Estate Rum
  • 225g plain flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 pint milk
  • 1/4 pint freshly squeezed orange juice
  • Oil for frying (I used an oil spray)
  • Soft brown sugar
  1. Soften the butter and beat in the sifted icing sugar and Appleton Estate Rum – a food processer is ideal here.
  2. Put in a covered container and chill until needed.
  3. Sift the flour and salt into a bowl.
  4. Make a well in the centre, drop in the eggs and beat into the flour with a little of the milk to give a thick, smooth cream.
  5. Gradually whisk in the remaining milk and the orange juice.
  6. Leave the batter to stand, covered in a cool place, for at least one hour.
  7. To cook the pancakes, heat a little oil in a frying pan.
  8. Ladle in just enough batter to cover the base of the pan.
  9. Cook until lightly golden and set on the underside, flip and cook until this side is speckled too.
  10. Using a lightly greased pan, continue with the recipe until you have about 12 pancakes.
  11. Keep the cooked pancakes warm between two clean tea towels as you cook them.
  12. Put a spoonful of chilled rum butter onto each pancake and fold into triangles.
  13. Arrange on a serving platter, scatter over the brown sugar and serve immediately.
It's at this point every year, without fail, that the supermarket shelves are almost cleared of all eggs, flour, milk, sugar, etc.. So if you want to make these beauties and get involved you'd batter hurry up.. *cringe*

Top image taken from JonoTakesPhotos photostream under the Creative Commons License.

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