Tuesday 17th February 2015 is Pancake Day! It must be at least 25 years since I last allowed myself the indulgence of eating pancakes. My prohibition began with the Hay System Diet, a diet that promotes separating food into three meals a day - one meal carbohydrate, one protein and the third entirely alkaline. I followed the Hay Diet, which subsequently evolved into Vegetarian food combining, for over two decades.
Pancakes are normally made of wheat-flour, eggs and milk, that is to say, high starch wheatflour, protein eggs and milk and, if you’re a traditionalist like me, alkaline lemon juice to serve. Add to this the generous quantity of refined sugar people like to sprinkle on top, for Food Combiners and Atkin dieters (that dietary exploration came later!) pancakes were probably one of my most obvious dietary ‘no nos’ of all time. Until now…
Thanks to this brilliant grain-free pancake batter recipe all things ‘pancake’ have been at the forefront of my mind recently - big time! Sweet or savoury, perfect pancakes have the potential to fill so many of the previous gaps in my culinary repertoire.
Spiced Fruit Scotch Pancakes is my first offering. Stacked high and served with sugar-free Orange & Apricot Syrup and perhaps a dollop of creme fraiche, it makes for a very impressive dessert when entertaining. Alternatively, leave out the fruit and spice and serve these little beauties plain for a lazy Sunday breakfast, perhaps accompanied by a mixed berry compote (recipe to follow in due course!) or with fresh blueberries and a drizzle of maple syrup.
Spiced Fruit Scotch Pancakes (Makes 16) (V)
Basic Pancake Batter Ingredients
180ml (¾ cup) raw whole milk (or almond milk, if preferred)
3 large eggs
30g organic ground almonds
45g Sukrin reduced fat organic coconut flour
40g arrowroot flour
15g (1 tbsp) coconut oil
1 tbsp clear, preferably raw (unheated) organic honey
½ tsp apple cider vinegar
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp mixed spice
85g (½ cup) mixed dried fruit e.g. currants, sultanas, raisins, cranberries
Blend all the basic pancake batter ingredients in a blender. Fold in the mixed spice and mixed dried fruit. Set aside.
Add some coconut oil to a pre-heated non-stick frying pan.
Drop good tablespoons of batter into the pan (one spoonful per pancake - obviously these need to be cooked in batches).
Even them out slightly with the back of a spoon then leave alone to cook for 2 - 3 minutes (small bubbles will appear on the surface when they’re ready to turn).
Cook for 2 minutes more, until the pancakes are cooked through, then remove from the pan. Cover with a tea towel to stop them drying out.
To serve, warm through in a low oven and stack them into a tower on each plate, allowing four to five per person.
Drizzle Orange and Apricot Syrup around the pancake stack and top with a spoonful of creme fraiche, if liked.
Carbohydrate 8g Protein 3g - per pancake with fruit
If you don’t like dried fruit or you want to minimise your carb intake, just cook 3-4 tablespoons of the basic pancake batter first...
Carbohydrate 5g Protein 3g - per pancake w/o fruit
Orange & Apricot Syrup (4 servings) (V)
2 heaped tbsp All-Fruit Apricot Conserve (St Dalfour’s range of all natural 100% fruit spreads are available in most supermarkets and health food shops)
Juice & finely grated zest of 1 large orange, preferably organic
1 tbsp clear, preferably raw, organic honey (or 1 tbsp Sukrin icing sugar)
Heat all the ingredients together in a small saucepan over a low to medium heat for 3-4 minutes.
When bubbling and slightly reduced, pass through a fine sieve into a bowl, pressing as much of the apricot flesh through as possible.
Return to a clean pan and gently warm through when ready to serve.
Carbohydrate 18g Protein 1g - per serving (made with honey)
Carbohydrate 14g Protein 1g - per serving (made with Sukrin icing sugar)