Year Round Eggs

Breton galettes with ham, cheese and fried egg


These Breton galettes, or savoury rolled pancakes, are made from buckwheat flour, and are usually served with a sauce poured over the top

Buckwheat, confusingly, is not related to wheat but comes from the same family as rhubarb, sorrel and knotweed. The flour is made from ground seeds rather that grain, and has an inimitable nutty flavour. It doesn’t contain any gluten though, so adding a little plain flour will help the batter hold together. Savoury rolled pancakes are usually served with a sauce poured over the top, which can make them a bit fussy to make. Here no sauce is needed as you have the runny yolk from the fried egg that is rolled up inside the pancake.
These Breton galettes are also delicious served with smoked herring roe or other fish eggs and crème fraîche.

Serves 4-6.

This recipe originally appeared in my second cookbook, Egg (Weidenfeld & Nicolson)

Photo courtesy of Haarala Hamilton


  • 120g buckwheat flour
  • 60g plain flour
  • Pinch fine sea salt
  • 220ml milk
  • 220ml water
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 tbsp butter, plus a little extra for frying
  • 6–8 eggs
  • Dijon mustard
  • 6–8 thin slices of cooked ham
  • 6–8 thin slices of Gruyère
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • Sift the flours into a bowl and add the salt. Put the milk, water and eggs into a jug and whisk.
  • Make a well in the centre of the flour and pour the milk mixture in, a bit at a time, stirring with a wooden spoon to gradually bring the flour from the sides until you have a smooth batter. Pour the batter back into the jug and leave to rest for at least 30 minutes.
  • When you are ready to cook the pancakes, melt the tablespoon of butter in the frying pan you are going to use to cook the pancakes, then pour it into the batter. Give the batter a good stir; it should have the consistency of single cream. If not, add a little more water. The pan will now have a good film of butter in it for you to cook your first pancake.
  • Make sure the pan is really hot and pour a small amount of batter from the jug into the pan, tilting it all around as you go so that the batter spreads in a very thin layer over the bottom. You can pour back any extra batter into the jug.
  • Cook for a minute or so and then use a spatula to lift up the sides of the pancake and carefully turn over; cook for another minute on the other side until golden brown.
  • Use a piece of kitchen paper to rub a tiny bit more butter into the pan before cooking each pancake.
  • When the pancakes are all cooked, put a little more butter into the pan and fry the eggs, so the white is cooked but the yolks are still runny.
  • On each pancake, spread some Dijon mustard, lay a piece of ham and cheese on top and put an egg on top of that, then season it with salt and pepper. Roll them up and eat immediately. I like to cut mine just where the yolk is, so it spills through the pancake, like a rich sauce.


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