Big Apple Pancake

This dish is not a fam fav from childhood but a recent addition to recipe collection.  For weekend stay-over guests you need a tasty easy to prepare dish for breakfast or brunch.  This is especially true when you have repeat customers.  You can serve only so many scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, potatoes, toast, pancakes, etc. before your guests start asking,

“Can we go out for breakfast?”

This recipe is a Gourmet Classic that I encountered in 2011.  We made it once only because we didn’t own a cast iron skillet and quite frankly,  we completely forget about this recipe.  One weekend we decided to do something a little different to hopefully blunt any thoughts of going out.  A cast iron skillet is mandatory (probably not but I made it up and it sounds good).  The only changes made to original recipe are the butter and milk.  The original Gourmet recipe calls for whole milk (we had 2% in the fridge) and sweet butter (salted works, trust me).  Serves about six.  Add fresh fruit and pass around the maple syrup.

Breakfast was served buffet style.  After all the guests served themselves and sat at the table, the room fell silent.  Yeah, it’s that good.

  • Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Place a rack in the middle position.
  • Melt 2 T butter in a cast iron skillet over medium heat.
  • Core and peel one large golden delicious apple into 1/4 inch wedges.
  • Add apples to the skillet and cook turning once until they start to soften.  This takes 3-5 minutes.
  • Arrange apple wedges around the edge of the skillet.
  • With a hand beater mix 1/2 C all-purpose flour, 4 eggs, 1/2 C whole milk, 2 T sugar, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and 1/4 tsp salt until smooth.
  • Pour mixture over the apples and transfer the skillet to the oven.
  • Bake for around 15 minutes or until the pancake is puffy and the edges are golden brown.
  • Dust with confectioner’s sugar, cut into six wedges, and serve.

Lemon Soy Marinade

Lemon Soy Marinade

juice of one half of a large lemon

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

Note – all measurements are approximate.

The marinade is enough for about a half pound of meat.  Double or triple as required.  I soaked tri tip steaks for around two hours before cooking.

Tri Tip Too


The good news is the tri tip steak I made a while ago was deemed very good.

The bad news is I didn’t get to have any.  The steaks were smaller than I thought so I didn’t get a piece.  Same as when I was growing up, Dad would serve dinner family style and let everyone else pick their protein first.  Dad got the pieces everyone else didn’t want.  The last time I grilled tri tip steaks I got chicken.

I had to buy more.  This time I bought the entire roast and carved it into steaks myself.  At roughly a pound and a half I saved $1.50.


The triangle pieces are small and the first cut had a pretty thick cap of fat making the “steak” even smaller.  I now understand why butchers turned this muscle into stew meat.

Tonight I am marinating the steaks in a lemon soy bath.  We’ll see how they turn out.

Update 6:00 PM

The steaks turned out great.  I froze the strip steak like pieces and grilled the smaller chunks.  I managed to cook the meat until it was medium and it wasn’t tough or chewy.  Don’t cook tri tip past medium or you will end up with chewy odd shaped hockey pucks.  The marinade turned out decent for a throw together bath.