Tonight, many of us all over the UK will be mixing flour, eggs and milk in a saucepan, heating it all up for a few minutes and tossing the resulting pancake in the air. It’s an enviable art if you can do it, and a bit of a mess if you can’t!

However, when it’s finally finished and on your plate, whatever you choose to fill your pancake with is a cause of national debate and splits the nation more than referendums beginning with the letter “B”.

If you’re a sweet tooth, something chocolate related? Vanilla and caramel? Brown sugar and marshmallows? Maybe honey and syrup are more your thing. If you’re going for the healthy option, maybe some blueberries, strawberries, chopped banana and apple cinnamon. Others go wildly “left field” and choose acidic lemon juice!

Whatever delectable filling you choose to adorn your pancake with, make sure you enjoy it – it’s technically still Winter and we don’t have to start worrying about waistlines till Spring…right?


A very messy affair!

However, in the whole of the British calendar, no other event makes quite such a recipe for a mucky disaster as Shrove Tuesday. When you stop and think about it, you’re cracking eggs, mixing flour, sloshing milk into a bowl, whisking it all around and pouring the contents into a hot saucepan. That will start sizzling and spitting – and just when you think your new white shirt has survived the ordeal, you’re socially obliged to toss the pancake into the air and catch it again!

Yes, pancake day is fun but messy, and the chances are you’ll be wearing a chocolatey ‘badge of honour’ by the time the last one has been gobbled up.

However, before you frantically start googling how to get chocolate, butter, strawberry juice, egg yolk or whipped cream stains out of your top, we can help.

Let the experts take care of it

Firstly, we always say that it’s not a good idea to try and remove difficult stains yourself as some stain removers you may have at home can actually cause damage to the fabric of a garment which can’t then be reversed.

Bring the clothing into American Dry Cleaning Company, give us the details of what the stain is, what caused it and how long it has been there. That way, we can work out the best way of getting rid of it, thus ensuring the items get back to looking new.

Don’t try this at home

Strawberry juice, raspberry juice and blueberry juice are all extremely stubborn if they stain, and just dabbing at the dark red or blue blotches with water unfortunately won’t get the stain out.

However, some sites online will recommend that you try all manner of remedies, each promising to remove the unwanted blemish. Some pages offer advice like daubing the garment in vinegar or squeezing lemon juice onto it, whilst others mention whitening toothpaste, salt mixed with toilet bleach, pure alcohol or even oxalic acid, which is poisonous and can’t be handled.

Whilst we’ve no doubt that the authors of these pages had the best of intentions, it’s also worth saying that if even your skin reacts badly to bleach, pure alcohol or oxalic acid (and the noble epidermis is one of the most resistant materials known to man), it’s highly likely that your cotton t-shirt won’t enjoy having these remedies splashed on them.

For all the clever clogs

After reading this article, many of you will be thinking “but why don’t you just wear an apron and avoid staining your clothes?”

You know what? We totally agree with you. Now put it into practice though, especially if there are children in the house – and there often are on Pancake Day!

At American Dry Cleaning Company, we’d be delighted if you managed to get through Shrove Tuesday 2020 with no stains on your favourite clothes, but even the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry. Although aprons will cover your chest and your legs, you’ll still get messy sleeves with all that flour, and we’ll bet that an egg or two will get broken all over your slippers!

What’s more, as society shifts more and more towards heating up frozen food in microwaves and where wholesale cooking from scratch with all the bare ingredients is seen less and less, fewer young people actually own an apron these days!

So, this blog goes out to all the people who’ll get stuck in tonight amongst the chocolate and the flour, with no apron! This is for those who are unafraid to get their hands messy!

Our perfect recipe;

  • 125g plain flour for thickening
  • Pinch of salt for flavour
  • 1 egg plus 1 egg yolk to keep it moist
  • 225ml whole or semi-skimmed milk for the creamy taste
  • Small knob of butter to make it delicious

and……your favourite garments to any one of our 30 high street stores the next day for peace of mind!