Blinis [Yeast Pancakes]
From: Dan, Minnesota, USA
Comments: Small Russian yeast pancakes made with a mixture of buckwheat and wheat flours, usually served with melted butter, caviar [on special occasions] or other fish roe, mushrooms with onions and sour cream.
Cooled blinis, just as bagel halves, can be spread with sour cream or cream cheese and topped, to taste, with smoked salmon, smoked oysters, pickled mussels, caviar [black or red], red onion rings, capers and fresh dill.
Servings: 6 to 8
  • 1 ounce [28 g] active dry yeast
  • 6 tablespoons [90 mL] lukewarm water
  • 2 cups [500 mL] wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup [190 mL] buckwheat flour
  • 2 cups [500 mL] lukewarm milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1/2 teaspoon [2.5 mL] salt
  • 1 teaspoon [5 g] sugar
  • 1 cup [225 g] cooled melted butter
  • 3 egg whites
  • Into a small bowl, soak yeast into lukewarm water for 2 to 3 minutes; stir to dissolve completely.
  • Keep bowl into a warm environment for 20 minutes, until doubled in volume.
  • Into a large bowl, mix together wheat flour and 1/2 cup [125 mL] buckwheat flour.
  • Make a well in the middle; pour in lukewarm milk and soaked yeast.
  • Beat vigourously with a wooden spoon, until smooth.
  • Cover with a cloth and leave to rise, into a warm environment away from drafts for 2 hours, until doubled in volume.
  • Then, beating, mix in remaining buckwheat flour.
  • Beat in egg yolks, salt, sugar and 2 tablespoons [30 g] cooled melted butter.
  • Leave to rest for approximately 1 hour, back into a warm environment away from drafts.
  • Into a clean large bowl, beat egg whites using a wire whisk, until firm.
  • Using a spoon, delicately fold egg whites into egg yolks mixture.
  • Leave to rest for 30 minutes more, back into a warm environment away from drafts.
  • Preheat oven to minimum heat, 150F [65C].
  • Into a large frypan, over high heat, heat 1 tablespoon [15 g] melted butter.
  • For each [3-inch / 7.6-cm] blini, pour 2 tablespoons [30 mL] batter into frypan, as many as 3 at a time.
  • Cook for 2 to 3 minutes; then brush top of each blini with melted butter.
  • Flip blinis over; cook for 2 minutes more, so that pancakes are golden brown on both sides.
  • Arrange cooked blinis onto an oven-proof dish; keep warm into preheated oven until all blinis are cooked.
  • Add butter to the frypan whenever necessary.
  • Serve blinis, one on top of the other onto a serving plate, wrapped into a tablescloth to keep them warm.