I absolutely love pancake day! As a child, I would often find myself eagerly counting down the days, as one would usually do during advent.
Going back 10 years or so, I can recall myself racing into the kitchen, pleading with my mum to let me whisk the batter and of course…
“Toss the pancakes!”
Oh what good times they were. The only unfortunate thing was, at that time, as you would expect of any mother, mine wanted to ensure I ate healthily. Well, undoubtedly a meal consisting solely of pancakes and syrup just wouldn’t suffice. As such, pancakes tended to be an after-dinner affair, by which time we usually felt too full to really fully enjoy them. Although that didn’t stop me ploughing my way through a fair few.
Well, I have to say, my mum has raised me well, as even now, I understand the importance of a healthy and nutritionally balanced meal.
This year in particular, I have really tried to embrace pancake day, keeping with the theme at breakfast, lunch and dinner. I think it is definitely the way forward, though obviously this would make for an incredibly sugar-packed day and stray far from meeting a person’s recommended daily intake of fruits and vegetables.
Most people would say that, as a vegan, I make up for it by eating more than enough fruit and vegetables every other day, but even so…
“I wanted to combine dinner and pancakes whilst still remaining fairly healthy.”
This recipe combines indulgence with nutrition. In my rush to get this posted before the day is out, the recipe may not be perfect, but it certainly gives a delicious result!
To any gourmet connoisseur, I may be committing a multitude of sins with this unorthodox take on the traditional pancake, but hey, you shouldn’t knock it ‘til you’ve tried it!
Hoi Sin Beetroot Pancakes
250g cooked beetroot*
120g rich hoi sin sauce**
90ml (6 tbsps) soya milk
1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp agave nectar
100g spelt flour
1 tbsp tapioca flour or cornflour
1 tbsp soya flour
1 tsp (heaped) baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
Puree the first 5 ingredients (beetroots, hoi sin sauce, oil, agave & soya milk) in a blender until completely smooth. Pour the beetroot mixture into a large mixing bowl.
In another small bowl, combine dry ingredients ( spelt, tapioca and soya flours, baking powder and salt). Sift the dry ingredients into the beetroot mixture.
I used to skip this step and just pour the dry ingredients straight into the bowl, but sifting really is essential if you want to avoid getting a lumpy batter.
Mix until completely combined.
Preheat a large, non-stick frying pan on high. Once heated fully, spray the pan liberally with oil and pour enough of the batter into the pan to make a 3inch circle.
Don’t worry if you don’t manage to make a circle. Just grab the handle and tilt the pan until the batter has formed into the desired shape. You will only have about 10-20 seconds to do this.
Let it cook for about 2 minutes or until the sides are a little drier. Using a spatula, carefully lift the pancake and quickly but gently flip to cook the other side.
Allow to cook for another 1-2 minutes, before using the spatula to lift and flip the pancake again.
Now that it has cooked on both sides, the pancake should slide freely around the pan when tilted, hence it is the perfect time to toss the pancake. This step is, of course, entirely optional!
Repeat process for the remaining batter!
Makes 8-12 small pancakes
*Tip: Rather than go to the trouble of cooking your own beetroot, buy the precooked ones which have been vaccuum-packed. You just want the plain roasted beets – not the ones in vinegar!
**Pretty obvious, but always check the label! Some contain lactose/milk.