Norwegian surmelkslapper with strawberry compote and crème fraîche

Rachel Phipps' Norwegian Surmelkslapper recipe produces a cross between an American and Scotch pancake, which is extremely light and fluffy.

First published in 2015
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I had two main takeaways from the fortnight I spent floating around the Nordic Fjords last Summer. The first was that from the water below us as we sailed up the fjords, the icy glaciers and the crystal clear water of Norway’s lakes, was that I don’t think I’d properly understood the colour blue before; the sheer saturation of natural hues was just staggering. My second takeaway was that the local people were so incredibly lucky to enjoy such delicious and wholesome foods on a daily basis.

Arriving at the tiny port of Olden we decided to leave the pretty little town and wood panelled church behind us in the first instance to sail across Lake Lovatnet for a lunch of Norwegian Waffles served with copious amounts of soured cream and great spoonfuls of local strawberry jam.

These waffles were my introduction to the Nordic idea of having some sort of waffle or pancake as a snack with coffee between times rather than as a breakfast food. A few days later I discovered ‘Surmelkslapper’, or ‘Lapper’ which are something of a cross between an American and a Scotch pancake. The batter is more like a cake batter, made with buttermilk and the super fluffy hotcakes that are created as a result are insanely more-ish served up for afternoon tea. In Norway, my Lapper came topped off with a dusting of crunchy cinnamon sugar, but serving them with the soured cream and strawberry jam combination I always had spooned over my waffles is pretty traditional too, so that is what I’m going with here.

The soured cream we were served on Lake Lovatnet had more in common with English (not the thicker French) creme fraiche, so that is what I’ve paired with these Lapper. If you want, you can add 1/4 a tsp ground cinnamon to the batter to capture some more of those other flavours. I’ve made the mix with two small eggs, as I wanted to create a batter that exactly used up the 284ml tubs of Buttermilk we get in most British supermarkets. If you only buy large eggs, double the mixture and use 3 eggs. Instead of making a strawberry compote, these Lapper are also fantastic served with a good quality strawberry jam.





First make the strawberry compote by combining 1 tbsp caster sugar with the strawberries, chopped into small pieces. Set over a medium to high heat, and stir occasionally for 20 minutes until the compote has broken down. Add more sugar to taste, if needed. Set aside to cool
To make the Lapper, whisk together 100g caster sugar with the eggs until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture is glossy. Whisk in half the buttermilk. Stir the bicarbonate soda into the remaining buttermilk; it should froth up to the consistency of whisked egg whites. While the buttermilk is activating, whisk the flour into the egg mixture. Whisk in the activated buttermilk until the mixture is smooth
Set a non stick frying pan over a medium heat and melt a little unsalted butter. Cook approximately two tablespoons of batter per pancake in batches. Serve either warm or at room temperature with the compote and lashings of creme fraiche
First published in 2015

Rachel is a food writer, splitting time between the Kentish and French countrysides.

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