Specialty of the House Andrea Weigl seeks recipes from Triangle restaurants requested by readers.

Specialty of the house: Guglhupf pancakes a real treat at home

March 23, 2013 


Guglhupf Pancakes with Simple Sautéed Granny Smith Apples by David Alworth of Guglhupf Cafe in Durham.


  • Guglhupf Bakery, Restaurant and Cafe

    2706 Durham-Chapel Hill Blvd, Durham. 919-401-2600. guglhupf.com

I am writing to see if you can track down the recipe for the pancakes at Guglhupf in Durham. I consider myself to be a bit of a “pancake connoisseur” and these are the best I have had. It tastes like there is some sourdough in it? Thanks.

Dave Buyting


Chef David Alworth, a longtime chef in the Triangle, was happy to share the secret to the recipe. Our reader was correct in detecting a sour taste in those pancakes because Alworth’s secret ingredient is buttermilk.

Name a restaurant in the Triangle and Alworth has probably worked there. He has been at Guglhupf for almost four years and before that worked Watts Grocery, 411 West, Acme, Pop’s and Crook’s Corner.

The other unique aspect to Alworth’s pancake recipe is a few tablespoons of browned butter. Alworth says you don’t brown the butter like you would for a fish dish but rather just melt the butter and cook it enough to impart a toasty flavor.

“I think it adds a little nuttiness to it,” he says.

Alworth cools the butter to room temperature before adding it to the pancake batter. Then he doesn’t have to use butter on the griddle or frying pan because the butter in the batter is enough.

This recipe makes about a dozen pancakes and plenty of sautéed apples. The recipes can be easily cut in half.

Specialty of the House gets recipes for local restaurant dishes. Send requests, including your city, to Specialty of the House, c/o The News & Observer or e-mail aweigl@newsobserver.com.

To see printable versions of the recipes, click on the links below:

Guglhupf Pancakes

Sautéed Granny Smith Apples

Guglhupf Pancakes

Chef David Alworth uses local eggs from Latta’s Egg Ranch and buttermilk from Homeland Creamery in Julian, N.C. He also recommends serving these with maple syrup from The Sugarman, a B-grade Vermont syrup that he likes better than grade “A” syrups. The grades of maple syrup don’t relate to quality but rather to color, flavor and sweetness. 3 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 cups self-rising flour, such as White Lily

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

2 tablespoons sugar

2 eggs

2 cups whole fat buttermilk

MELT butter over medium heat until golden in color and slightly nutty to the nose. Set aside to cool to just above room temperature.

COMBINE flour, baking soda and sugar in a large mixing bowl and set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and buttermilk together with the melted butter. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir with a wooden spoon to combine.

HEAT a skillet or griddle over medium heat and brush with melted butter. Use a two-ounce ladle to measure out batter, cooking a couple pancakes at time. Resist the temptation to overcrowd the skillet. Turn the pancakes when the bubbles start to appear and the underside is nicely brown, about 3 minutes. Serve with real maple syrup and sautéed apples.

Yield: 12 pancakes

Simple Sautéed Granny Smith Apples From David Alworth of Guglhupf Cafe 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided 4 Granny Smith Apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1/3 inch slices 1/4 cup brown sugar

MELT 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat in a large sauté pan. Add apple slices and quickly toss to coat in the butter. Spread apple slices out in the pan and allow them to caramelize for a few minutes, toss and repeat. Add the remaining butter and brown sugar and stir together. Cook for an additional minute until the apples are almost tender and the brown sugar and butter has come together to create a nice caramelized coating.

Yield: 8-10 servings

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