Cinnamon Bun Ebelskivers

My mother will be so jealous when she reads this post. She’s been talking about buying an Ebelskiver pan forever whereas I would look at the odd little thing and thoughts of disastrous outcomes danced in my head. But having recently been gifted the potentially hissy fit producing gizmo I garnered at much courage as I could muster at 7:00 AM and got to work.

The first conundrum I faced was choosing a recipe to try. There were an abundance of fruit and jelly filled versions and chocolate and caramel were also popular option, but when I found a Cinnamon Bun Ebelskiver recipe I heard an audible “ding! ding! ding!”  in my head. As an aside my research into these Danish pastries revealed that there’s a soon to be published cookbook on the filled pancakes by Kevin Crafts scheduled to be released in March of 2011. Needless to say that was instantly added to my wishlist.

The process of mixing the pancake batter is very straight forward. I was intrigued by the addition of fluffy egg whites to the recipe as this created a very light mixture. The actual pancake making was a little trial and error filled. Finding just the right temperature which would brown and not burn the puffs was a little difficult at first but eventually I got the hang of it. Surprisingly, the part I was the most anxious about, the actual flipping of the pancakes turned out to be super easy. They sell special tools for this but I just used chopsticks and it worked completely fine. To remove the fully cooked puffs from the pan I gently picked them up with a pair of rubber tipped kitchen tongs.

In the end, some of my puffs were a little over done, some were a little under done, and eventually I made some that were just right. Once you drizzle the sweet cream cheese icing over their warm tops though all is forgiven. I did end up with a lot of leftover cinnamon filling so next time I know that I need to be a bit more generous with that particular step. Also, make sure you have a crowd of hungry people in the house as this recipe makes enough puffs to feed a football team.

Cinnamon Bun Ebelskivers
Makes 35 to 40
Originally published by Williams-Sonoma

For the cinnamon filling:

1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 Tbs. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes, at room temperature

For the cream cheese frosting:

3 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
3 to 4 Tbs. milk

For the pancakes:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 Tbs. granulated sugar
4 eggs, separated
2 cups milk
4 Tbs. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for cooking

To make the cinnamon filling, in a bowl, still together the granulated sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt. Add the butter and, using the back of a spoon, mash the butter into the flour mixture until all of it is absorbed into the butter, forming a paste. Set the cinnamon filling aside.

To make the cream cheese frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the flat beater, beat together the cream cheese and butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the confectioners’ sugar, reduce the speed to low and beat until combined, 1 to 2 minutes, stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add 3 Tbs. of the milk and beat until combined, about 1 minute. The frosting should be thick but still pourable; add more milk if needed to thin it. Transfer the frosting to a small bowl; set aside.

To make the pancakes, in a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and granulated sugar. In another bowl, lightly whisk the egg yolks, then whisk in the milk and the 4 Tbs. melted butter. Whisk the egg yolk mixture into the flour mixture until well combined; the batter will be lumpy. Using an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites on high speed until stiff but not dry peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold the whites into the batter in two additions.

Put 1/8 tsp. melted butter in each well of a filled-pancake pan. Set over medium heat and heat until the butter begins to bubble. Pour 1 Tbs. batter into each well. Spoon 1/2 tsp. of the cinnamon filling into the center of each pancake and top with 1 Tbs. batter. Cook until the bottoms are golden brown and crispy, about 3 minutes. Using 2 skewers, flip the pancakes over and cook until golden and crispy, about 3 minutes more. Transfer the pancakes to a plate. Repeat with the remaining batter and filling.

Drizzle the pancakes with the frosting and serve immediately.

Note: Thank you to my friend Aaron and the lovely gents of Dibbsly for the early Christmas gift.