Rhododendron in Tuxen’s Garden by Laurits Tuxen
from Google Arts & Culture
“I was lucky to grow up with strong Danish traditions in my family, including these festive, round pancake balls called æbleskiver. As a kid, I would eat about as many as there are rhododendron in Tuxen’s garden! The warmth and tenderness of this painting is, to me at least, a metaphor for feeling Danish.”
Note: You will need an æbleskiver pan for this recipe like the one below.
2 Cups flour
2 Cups buttermilk
1 Extra Large egg
1/2 Cup butter (melted) + extra for brushing
4 Tbsp white sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
Combine dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Whisk buttermilk and egg, and pour into dry ingredients. Stir together while pouring in melted butter (to avoid curdling egg).
Heat æbleskiver pan over medium. When at temperature, brush each well with butter before filling each approximately 2/3 full with batter. Allow the outer shell to cook and brown before rotating the ball in the pan using a toothpick or fork. The batter will spill into the pan and create the æbleskiver’s classic ball shape over 2-3 rotations. Continue rolling the balls in the pan until they are golden brown, taking a total of 3-5 minutes. Brush the pan’s wells with butter in between each batch.
This recipe generously feeds 4-6 people. It’s helpful to have ‘testers’ so you can check for doneness on the inside.
Traditionally, æbleskiver are served with jams, butter, and a sprinkling of powdered sugar. Historically, a bit of apple or applesauce was tucked in the middle of the balls during cooking during turning; most people skip that today on both sides of the ocean because the flavors can be easily enjoyed outside the æbleskiver.
The recipe may be cut in half, keeping 1 egg and using only 1 cup of both flour and buttermilk. The recipes from Denmark note using 2 eggs for a batch this size, but eggs have gotten much larger over the last century so we now adjust this based on personal preference.