Wednesday 26 July 2017

New takes on an old favourite - pancakes

Scottish Oat Pancakes
Scottish Oat Pancakes
Socca

Shrove Tuesday can only mean one thing. But who says pancakes should just be eaten with lemon and sugar? Sudi Pigott offers three twists on the traditional recipe

SCOTTISH OAT PANCAKES  WITH SKYR, RASPBERRIES AND THYME HONEY

Prep: 10 mins

Cook: 10 mins

Serves 4

These pancakes, with their subtle, toasty taste, make a perfect start for breakfast or brunch, or as a dessert. Porridge oats are simply whizzed in a food processor to make a fine flour. Besides porridge, this oat pancake gets me thinking about Scottish cranachan, so I've paired it with skyr - the Icelandic yoghurt that is similar to Greek yoghurt with a rich, creamy texture - raspberries, and thyme honey. The oat pancakes would work equally well as a savoury breakfast dish.

Ingredients

150g porridge oats

150g self-raising flour

Half a teaspoon ground cinnamon

2 large eggs, separated

400g milk, or soya or almond milk

50g butter, melted

250g tub skyr

1 large punnet raspberries

6 tablespoons thyme honey

Method

Preheat the oven to 100°C/gas mark ª and warm a plate to keep the pancakes warm while you make them. Blitz the porridge oats in a food processor to make a flour.

Mix the blitzed porridge oats, flour and cinnamon together in a bowl. Whisk in the egg yolks and the milk. Put the egg whites in a clean bowl and whisk until they form soft peaks. Gently fold the whites into the batter. The batter will be fairly thick, like double cream.

Heat a heavy non-stick frying pan over a high heat. Reduce to medium-high and use a heatproof pastry brush to brush with butter. Pour in a ladleful of batter and cook for 1-2 minutes until it puffs up. Flip over and cook for 2 minutes or until lightly golden.

Keep the pancakes warm and repeat with the remaining batter, adding more butter to the pan as necessary. Serve the pancakes with a scoop of skyr, a scattering of raspberries and a good drizzle of thyme honey.

SOCCA

2017-02-28_lif_29014142_I1.JPG
Socca
 

Prep: 15 mins plus 30 mins sealing

Cook: 20 mins

Serves 4

Socca, made with chickpea flour, olive oil and water, is so simple and so redolent of sunny Nice and the Riviera. I especially like it with homemade anchoïade (French anchovy dip) and crème fraîche, though pistou or tapenade are great accompaniments too. In Nice market, socca is served cut into triangles and sprinkled with sea salt. I find it makes a rather good pre-dinner or party snack. It is extra-good with a special seaweed salt or even a truffle salt.

Ingredients

1 & a half tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for greasing

250g chickpea flour (gram flour)

Half a teaspoon salt

a good grinding of black pepper

Half a teaspoon ground cumin

500ml tepid water

2 large egg whites

FOR THE ANCHOÏADE

100g jar of anchovies, drained

1 garlic clove, crushed

A good handful of flat-leaf parsley leaves

3-4 tablespoons olive oil

Method

To make the anchoïade, put the anchovies, garlic and parsley in a food processor and whizz, adding the olive oil gradually until it becomes a rough, thick paste. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 100°C/gas mark ª and line two baking trays with greaseproof paper, then brush them lightly with olive oil. Put the chickpea flour in a large bowl and mix in the salt, pepper and cumin.

Gradually pour in the water, whisking with an electric hand-held beater as you go. Continue whisking until the mixture is smooth and the consistency of double cream. Put the egg whites into a clean bowl and whisk until just stiff. Gently incorporate the egg whites into the socca mixture using a metal spoon. Leave to rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Place a non-stick frying pan over a high heat for 2 minutes, then reduce the heat to medium-high. Using a heatproof pastry brush, brush the pan with olive oil. Pour a ladleful of batter into the pan, the socca should be about 5mm thick. Cook for 2 minutes or until tiny bubbles start to form on the surface. Flip over and cook for 2 minutes or until lightly golden, a little crisp and lacy.

Transfer to the warmed baking trays while you repeat with the remaining batter, adding more oil to the pan as necessary. Serve with bowls of anchoïade and crème fraîche. Accompany with a crisp salad and a well-chilled glass of rosé for instant transportation to Nice.

DORAYAKI: JAPANESE HONEY PANCAKES WITH AZUKI BEAN AND MASCARPONE FILLING

Prep: 15 mins

Cook: 15 mins plus cooling

Serves 4

Legend has it that dorayaki were first prepared when a samurai named Benkei accidentally left his gong (dora) behind at a farmer's house where he was hiding out. The enterprising farmer used it to cook little 'gong cakes', hence the name.

Ingredients

1 large egg, beaten

1 large egg, separated

1 tablespoon golden caster sugar, plus 3 teaspoons

1 tablespoon clear honey

Half a teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon sunflower or rapeseed oil, plus extra for cooking

75ml semi-skimmed milk

80g flour, sifted

1 teaspoon baking powder

FOR THE FILLING

100g adzuki red bean mixture

200g mascarpone

Put the beaten egg and egg yolk in a large bowl. Add 1 tablespoon sugar, the honey, vanilla, oil, milk, flour and baking powder. Mix gently with a whisk, starting from the middle of the bowl and moving outwards until all the ingredients are just incorporated and the mixture is foamy and falls in ribbons when the whisk is lifted from the bowl.

Put the egg white in a clean bowl with the remaining sugar and, using an electric whisk, slowly whisk until it forms soft peaks, then increase the speed to form stiff peaks. Add about a third of the egg white to the egg-yolk mixture using a hand whisk and a very light circular motion.

Repeat with the second third of egg white. Now use a spatula to fold in the remaining egg white, ensuring that the mixture remains full of air bubbles and doesn't deflate. If it does, the dorayaki will be flat and rubbery.

Heat a crêpe pan over a medium heat, add 1 tablespoon oil, then wipe off any excess with kitchen paper.

Add 1 generous tablespoon of batter for each dorayaki and swirl it around quickly to a diameter of about 8cm. Cook for 1-2 minutes until golden. Check it is done by tentatively sliding a spatula underneath. If there are no wet crumbs sticking to the spatula, it is ready to flip over.

Cook for 40-60 seconds until golden yet still a little soft in the centre. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining batter.

When the dorayaki are cool, put the adzuki mixture in a bowl, add the mascarpone and combine well. Use 1 heaped tablespoonful to sandwich two similar-sized dorayaki together, spreading the filling with a palette knife.

If the dorayaki are not to be eaten straight away, wrap them in cling film to stop them drying out. They can also be frozen for up to 1 month.

Flipping Good! by Sudi Pigott is out now (Kyle Books, €18.20)

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