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Tip the flour into a large bowl, make a well in the centre, crack in the eggs, then add the milk and vanilla. Use a large whisk to beat the eggs into the milk, slowly incorporating the flour, until you have a smooth batter. Set aside.
Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Pour the oil into an ovenproof skillet pan, frying pan or tart Tatin tin (mine was 20cm in diameter) and place on the middle shelf to heat up – remove the top shelf, if you can, as the pancake will puff up as it cooks.
Tip the cherries, sugar and brandy into a frying pan with 2 tbsp of the syrup. Bring to a simmer, then bubble until the liquid is syrupy, adding a splash more cherry syrup if the cherries look dry. Set aside to cool a little.
When the pan is red hot, pull out the oven tray and pour in the batter – it should sizzle as it hits the pan. Quickly close the oven and leave undisturbed to cook for 20-25 mins until it looks like a giant Yorkshire pudding and is deep golden brown. Don’t be tempted to open the door too early as it will sink. Serve the pancake in the pan, topped with ice cream and syrupy cherries.