Single Guy Breakfast Pancake (Chapati)

When my good friend Dominic told me he’d mastered making a single morning pancake/crêpe using just flour and water, I wasn’t just skeptical. No milk? No eggs? How could it possibly be good?
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When my good friend Dominic told me he’d mastered making a single morning pancake/crêpe using just flour and water, I wasn’t just skeptical. No milk? No eggs? How could it possibly be good?

Dom’s argument was that as a single parent, when his daughter wasn’t around, he didn’t want to make a whole batch of pancakes or crêpes just for him. So, he'd been experimenting with stirring just enough water into some flour to make a crêpe-like batter, then cooking it in a greased skillet for a single, large pancake (as he called it) that he could slather with jam.

I chalked up his thinking of this concoction as “good” to his being 1) single and 2) a guy. I teased him about it until he insisted on making me one.

As I watched his fork-stirred batter puff up and brown in the pan, it occurred to me that his “pancake” looked more like an Indian flatbread – a chapati!*—and it was looking awfully good. I began revising my opinion then and there. After all, there are lots of yummy foods that are made with just flour and water. Bread, tortillas, pasta.… And so, it was no longer a big surprise when Dominic flipped the pancake onto my plate and it turned out to be absolutely delicious.

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In fact, it was so delicious, I asked Dominic make me another one. Only this time, I made him write down exact measurements. The recipe is below. I imagine you can triple or quadruple it to serve more people, but as is, it’s a fantastic option for a quick one-person breakfast or an accompaniment to soup or salad. You could probably even wrap it around a filling, like a taco.

*Chapatis are unleavened flatbreads made by cooking a round of dough on a hot griddle.

Dominic’s Breakfast Pancake
Makes 1 pancake

½ cup flour
1/8 tsp. salt, optional
1 tsp. butter, oil, or margarine

1. Mix flour and salt in small bowl. Whisk ½ cup plus 1 to 2 Tbs. water into mixture with fork until smooth.
2. Heat butter, oil, or margarine in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Pour in batter, and swirl around to coat bottom of pan. Cook 4 to 5 minutes, or until pancake is browned in spots on bottom and beginning to puff in places. Flip with spatula, and cook 5 to 7 minutes more, until pancake is browned and dry on both sides, flipping 2 or 3 more times if necessary to cook evenly.