|Alternative names||Palačinka, palacinka, palacsinta, clătite|
|Place of origin||Romania|
|Main ingredients||eggs, wheat flour, milk|
Palatschinke or palacsinta or clătită is a thin crêpe-like variety of pancake of Romanian origin, common in Central and Eastern Europe. The name originates from the (Romanian) plăcintă (clătită) (lit. "rinsed pie"), referring to the runny dough used for the recipe.
Names of the dish include Palaçinka (Albanian), Palatschinke (pl. Palatschinken) (Austrian German), palačinka / палачинка (Bulgarian, Czech, Serbo-Croatian, Slovene, Macedonian), naleśnik (Polish), palacinka (Slovak), palacinka (Italiano) and palacsinta (Hungarian).
Central European Palatschinke (palačeke) are thin pancakes similar to the French crêpe. The main difference between the French and Central European version of the dish is that the mixture for palatschinken can be used straight away unlike that of crepes which is suggested to be left at rest for several hours. Palatschinken are made by creating a runny dough from eggs, wheat flour, milk, and salt and frying it in a pan with butter or oil. Unlike thicker types of pancakes, palatschinken are usually served with different types of fillings and eaten for lunch or dinner.
Palatschinken are traditionally rolled with apricot, strawberry, or plum jam, and sprinkled with confectioner's sugar. A variety of fruit sauces (like apple sauce), or thick fruit jams called lekvar (plum, prune, raspberry, cherry or sour cherry jam), lemon juice and sugar, chocolate sauce, hazelnut-chocolate cream (Nutella), almonds, dried or fresh fruits, sweet cottage or quark cheese and raisins, cocoa powder, poppy seed, or any combination thereof, may also be used. Rakott palacsinta are layered pancakes with sweet cottage cheese and raisins, jam and walnut layers between the pancakes, baked in the oven, comparable to the French mille crêpe.
A well known Hungarian version of palatschinke is the Gundel pancake (Gundel palacsinta), made with ground walnuts, raisin, candied orange peel, cinnamon, and rum filling, served flambéed in dark chocolate sauce made with egg yolks, heavy cream, and cocoa.
Palatschinken may also be eaten unsweetened as a main course, such as a meat-filled Hortobágyi palacsinta. They may also be eaten plain, filled with cheeses, or vegetables such as mushroom, spinach or sauerkraut, topped with sour cream, or cut into thin strips, called Flädle in Germany′s and Switzerland's Alemannic dialects and Frittaten in Austria. Flädle/Frittaten are used in Frittaten soup - pancake strips served in clear broth.
The dish originates from Romania, and the origin of its name is the Romanian plăcintă clătită (lit. "a rinsed/runny pie"), which ultimately derives from Latin placenta ("a flat cake"), itself a word of Greek origin. In Romanian, the term refers to the runny mixture used for the recipe and how it behaves in the pan; in common parlance, the name of the dish has been shortened only to clătită, turning what was once an adjective ("rinsed", "runny") into a noun. The Romanian meaning is similar with one of the Ancient Greek name of the dish, tagenites, derived from the Greek word for the frying pan.
The name of the dish has followed a track of borrowing across several languages of central and south-eastern Europe. Austrian-German term Palatschinke(n) is deemed to have been borrowed from Czech palačinka, that in turn from Hungarian palacsinta. Palačinka is also the name in most West and South Slavic languages (Slovak palacinka, Bulgarian, Czech, Macedonian, Serbo-Croatian, Slovenian palačinka, палачинка). In Polish, the equivalent is called a naleśnik, in Ukrainian налисник (nalysnyk) or млинець (mlynec), in Russian налистник (nalistnik) or блинчик (blinchik).
- L. Șăineanu, Dicționar universal al limbei române, ediția a VI-a, 1929, sub voce
- June Meyers Authentic Hungarian Heirloom Recipes Cookbook
- Gundel, Karoly (1992). Gundel's Hungarian cookbook. Budapest: Corvina. ISBN 963-13-3600-X. OCLC 32227400.page 124
- Kluge. Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen Sprache. 2003, Walter De Gruyter, ISBN 3-11-017472-3 p. 675