I'm not going to write *again* about how this blog is a huge collection of lessons learned — I do that almost every week and I figure you probably get it by now. Even though it goes without saying, this week was no different from the others. Sometimes I don't give the process (the food, recipe following, creating, and problem solving) enough credit. Many weeks are begun by flipping through recipe books, reading dozens of "TasteSpotting" pages, researching recipes and gathering inspiration for what to make. Sometimes I bite off more than I can chew — trying to compare our baby blog to the big ones with cool sponsored posts or tons of followers. The result of that is sometimes looking for recipes with fancy ingredients and dozens of steps. (This is a mistake I make often — for the this blog and life in general).
I'm moving across the country to California on Sunday (WHAT?!) so last week when I was planning my recipes, I tried to simplify. (Because I've somehow still barely begun packing!) I also knew I wouldn't have a helper for the weekend and going solo on the cooking, shooting and styling is no small task. I'd seen Dutch babies made before by some of my favorite bloggers but honestly had no clue what they were. I only knew they were beautiful and full of a few simple ingredients. After some research, I realized a Dutch baby is basically a custard like puff pancake (aka heaven on earth) made in a cast iron. The ingredients rise in the skillet while baking and after being removed from the oven, the center falls leaving air pockets in the custard that give the Dutch baby a unique texture.
Even though my goal was to simplify, for a few fleeting seconds as I was making my grocery list, I still had those same complicated thoughts I always have. (*Maybe I'll make a Dutch baby with multiple fruits and flavor profiles. Maybe I'll combine something unlikely and make it delicious.*) Those thoughts faded and simple, bright, red and juicy strawberries came to my mind. They were perfect. I added them to my grocery list and said goodbye to my big fancy plans. Maybe I'm embracing my new, laid-back California lifestyle a week early. Or maybe I'm realizing simple can be and IS beautiful. Either way, I like life (and my Dutch baby) a lot better when it's simple.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
- Add butter to skillet and place in oven for 3-5 minutes until melted.
- In a bowl combine eggs, flour, vanilla, cinnamon, sugar, salt, and milk.
- Add strawberries to skillet and toss with melted butter.
- Pour batter over the strawberries and then place the skillet in the oven.
- Cook for about 20 minutes. The edges should puff up and center should be set (aka no sloshing when you move it.)
- Top with confectioners sugar, fresh whipped cream, fruit or maple syrup (or get extra indulgent and top with vanilla ice cream!)