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Aebleskivers: the perfect pan
This is the pan for those who've caught on that neither their world -- nor their pancakes -- have to be flat. It's the aebleskiver pan, and it's a must-have kitchen tool when the craving arises for those sphere-shaped little Danish pancakes. The pans are generally round and often made from heavy cast iron, though other versions are made from lighter metals, like aluminum, and covered with a nonstick coating. Each pan contains several half-spherical indentations (one for each aebleskiver) for making those perfectly round pancakes.
Aebleskiver pans are generally available at cooking stores, including Surfas in Culver City as well as select Williams-Sonoma and Sur La Table stores. Prices vary depending on the material, but they typically range from $20 to $40. They are also widely available online. At Arne Hansen's website, www.solvangrestaurant.com, there are seven models ranging from $13.50 for a basic cast-iron pan to $59.50 for a nine-hole nonstick aluminum one.
-- Noelle Carter