We all love Pancake Day. In fact, some people (me) would argue that it far surpasses its neighbouring holiday: Valentine’s Day. It’s the only day where it’s socially acceptable to eat pancakes for breakfast, lunch and dinner (crêpe for breakfast, scotch for lunch, crêpe for dinner, duh). Give me Pancake Day parties over house parties any day.
But as much as I love Pancake Day, I always feel slightly left out of the proceedings just because I am a savoury pancake lover.
There is no doubt that in recent years we have seen a meteoric rise in bacon on pancakes following the public’s new-found passion for Scotch pancakes, but smearing these bacon infused pancakes with the troublesomely sticky maple syrup makes them sweet. And that, in my mind, makes them wrong.
I am calling bullshit on lemon and sugar, on maple syrup, on cream, on fruit. It’s gross. Make way for crêpes filled with slightly melted grated cheddar cheese. Or cheese and ham. Or cheese with bacon flavoured crisps (tried it last year, worked surprisingly well). Or even just a smattering of salted butter.
Don’t just take it from me, savoury pancakes are a thing pretty much everywhere else. I mean, they’re not the norm in most places, but I bet you don’t lose the respect of your friends for trying to order a crêpe with an egg on it in France.
Of course there are far more elegant savoury pancakes to be made: pancakes with a glorious creamy mushroom sauce, bacon and egg, ham, Swiss cheese and asparagus – the list goes on. But, as someone who has been shamed year on year for stuffing my pancakes with cheese, can you imagine what would happen if I turned up with mushrooms? We need to see people stop being so narrow-minded about what toppings are ‘supposed’ to go on pancakes and open up to the possibility that maybe cheese on pancakes is a revelation and that maybe, just maybe, lemon and sugar is a little bit basic.
This is what dreams are made of.
Savoury pancake lovers are consistently the butt of jokes on Pancake Day. We face the subtle attempts to squeeze lemon onto our otherwise perfect pancakes. The eye rolls haunt us in our sleep. We are watched by our friends, the victims of David Attenborough-esque commentary on our eating habits. Let’s not forget that we are largely singled out and often forced into bringing our own toppings with us.
So this Pancake Day, I urge all you savoury pancake lovers to turn up at your respective pancake parties with cheese, mushrooms and crisps in hand. Commandeer the kitchen. Awaken your fellow pancake consumers to the joys of a cheese filled crêpe.
And to those who grimace at the thought of a savoury pancake, give it a try. And if that’s too much, just try and hide your revulsion.