This is the best pancake recipe method for Shrove Tuesday 2018, according to a pro chef

Whether you're a fan of the traditional lemon and sugar, or prefer a more exotic topping, it's important to get the basics right when it comes to the batter.

If your efforts have been panned in the past, don't fret – as a professional has offered his top tips to making the perfect pancake.

Head Chef Steve Smith, from Michelin-starred restaurant Bohemia in Jersey, has shared his methods for achieving a golden colour on the outside while keeping it light and fluffy on the inside.

He revealed that they key to making the ultimate batter is ensuring all the ingredients are at room temperature before they're added.

Interestingly, he also recommends mixing the dry ingredients – flour and salt – in a separate bowl to the wet ones (milk and eggs).

Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the wet mixture, then stir until everything is combined – but don't overwork the batter by trying to smooth out all the lumps.

OK, so far it's all sounding pretty simple – and not wildly different to most people's way of making pancakes.

But the most common mistake is the next stage – not letting the batter rest for long enough.

Steve recommends giving it at least five minutes before ladling it into the pan.

This will give the gluten, which you have created from stirring up the batter, time to relax and for the lumps in the batter to smooth out naturally.

It will also give the pancakes a nice, thick consistency, meaning they'll turn out fluffier.

And you can use the rest time to prepare your tasty toppings!

Steve suggested spicing up your pancake mix by including spices, citrus zest, herbs, ginger, cinnamon, vanilla extract, chocolate chips, raisins, cheese and sweetcorn.

And you don't necessarily have to make them in the traditional round shape.

Why not get creative and pour the batter into a squeezey bottle, so you can draw your own designs directly onto the pan?

If you're making a big batch, keep them warm by arranging them in a single layer on an oiled cooking rack and pop them in a preheated oven at 80C for a no longer than 15 minutes.

Ever wondered what the difference is between American pancakes, English style, or French crepes?

Here we give you the lowdown on each one – and how to make them at home.

And why not try this unusual method which involves making pancakes on the other side of the pan?

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