Oven German Apple Pancake a la Dinah’s

Dinah-Apple-pancakeDinah-Apple-pancakeDinah apple pancakeDon’t let the photo scare you, this is Sunday brunch deliciousness in our home. My Westside neighbor and fellow food blogger, Erika Penzer Kerekes, tapped me for a classic Los Angeles recipe to feature in her cooking column on LA Examiner.com. Both her column on this national website and her personal blog In Erika’s Kitchen are regular reads for me. It wasn’t difficult to decide what to dish up for Erika; Larry and I have been tinkering with one of his longtime loves, the German Apple Pancake at popular greasy spoon Dinah’s Family Restaurant on Sepulveda (you can see it off the 405).

Until marrying Larry, I had never experienced a Dutch Baby or Oven Pancake or German Apple Pancake – gigantic plate of dough, apples, butter, cinnamon, powdered sugar, lemon juice and more butter. Apparently it is a family classic, with fond memories attached.

But digging deeper, the fond memories were more of the pancake than of the family outing; two boys who roughhoused a lot, younger sister who wished the boys would pay attention to her, dad who wouldn’t order bacon because you could get a whole pound of it at the store for $1.50. I don’t know what their mom was doing during all this, probably just eating her pancake.

It’s an easy recipe; just takes a very hot oven and ovenproof 12-inch frying pan. Go for it!

Oven German Apple Pancake Inspired by Dinah’s Family Restaurant

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 sweet apple such as Fuji, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
  • 3 eggs
  • Dash salt
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour (all purpose flour is OK, too)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • Juice from one fresh lemon
  • 2 teaspoons powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Melt butter in a 12-inch ovenproof frying pan over high heat. Add brown sugar and cinnamon, stir to combine. Add apple slices and cook until just starting to soften, about 3 minutes. Turn off heat, arrange apples in single layer around bottom of pan.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together eggs, salt, flour and milk. Pour mixture over apples, tip pan to spread evenly.

Bake in hot oven until puffed and brown, about 15 minutes. Invert onto large serving plate, sprinkle with lemon juice and powdered sugar. Makes one 12-inch pancake, four servings.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 E A Compton March 19, 2016 at 9:00 am

Can’t wait to try this! Dinah’s was my husband’s (then boyfriend) and my favorite breakfast place 35 years ago. The first time we went a friend recommended the apple pancake. Not knowing anything about it we ordered two. The waitress just stared at us for a minute, left and returned with two “to go” boxes. “Here, you’ll need these.”, she said. When she brought the first pancake we were confused, had they combined both of our orders onto one plate? Then she brought the OTHER pancake. Live and learn. So funny and a great memory after more than 30 years of marriage. I will tell you, the reheated leftover are magical at 10:00PM! Thanks for the recipe! Living in Colorado we don’t make it to Dinah’s anymore.

2 Worth The Whisk June 13, 2014 at 12:09 am

Wow, fabulous Judy!!

3 Judy Fiber June 12, 2014 at 12:11 pm

I just made this pancake after not tasting one for 15 yrs. The secret is to make it very light – lots of egg whites. So what I do is whip up the egg whites before and then mix the yellow with the flour and sugar. At the very end – you fold into the batter the egg whites and it make a nice fluffy pancake that envelopes the apples. I also chop my apples up in a chopper and add pecans to the butter. When the cake is baked – it is very fluffy and I top it with a lot of butter and butter pecan syrup and powdered sugar. Nothing any better with a piece of ham or country bacon. You can add some eggs if you like for a great evening meal

4 Bob n Jeannie April 18, 2010 at 4:38 pm

mmmm…sounds mighty tempting. Bob and I have been hooked on simple wheat pancakes (no frills here) but this ‘German Apple pancake’ sounds good and probably worth a try. if that’s how it looks like, i can’t go wrong…
thanks for sharing!

5 Ann Baker April 16, 2010 at 11:31 am

I experienced my first Dutch Baby in Buffalo, New York during a snowstorm (what else?) in the Original House of Pancakes in 1978. It was heavenly, and frankly the gross, heavy feeling afterward was part of the joy of the experience… one simply gives oneself over to embrace the sugar and fat, wholeheartedly.

So glad to have a new lighter version to try out. Thanks!

6 sippitysup April 8, 2010 at 8:07 am

I am doing a “week” of international Pancakes. I was going to end with the classic American “Stack”, but this leaves me tempted to try this version instead… decisions. GREG

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