These skillet cakes follow a recipe by Sam Sifton in NYT Cooking and incorporates a technique we learned from the Wythe hotel in Brooklyn, NY. Full written instructions below.
Makes two 10-inch skillet pancakes.
Step 1: The night before cooking pancakes
Mix "The Sponge" in a medium bowl:
1 cup (120 grams) all-purpose flour
1 cup (240 grams) sourdough starter ("unfed")
1 cup (224 grams) buttermilk
Let The Sponge sit out overnight at room temp, covered.
Step 2: The morning to make the pancakes
Add to The Sponge mixture from the night before:
1/4 cup melted butter
1 egg, beaten
6 grams baking soda
3 grams salt
1/2 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
Step 3: Cook the pancakes
While the batter sits, begin heating your cast iron skillet over medium heat with a generous knob of butter. The butter will ensure release and will form a beautiful brown crust on the cake.
Once the skillet is hot and butter is bubbly-melted, pour half the batter into the 10" skillet. Even out the dough in the skillet and set the burner to a low-medium setting. While the pancake cooks, start the oven broiler, set on high.
The pancake is ready to go under the broiler when there are lots of air bubbles on top that are sustaining their open/popped position and the edges of the pancake appear to be drying out. It will be very fragrant. If you smell burning, turn down the burners further or give the pan a rest from the heat.
Transfer the skillet to the broiler for 2-5 minutes. Keep an eye on it! When the top. is a nice even golden-brown, flip the pancake onto a plate and enjoy immediately.
This recipe will fill up two 10" skillets. Of course, we recommend the Fourneau cast iron skillet which has a polished cooking surface for superior release.