Jun 2015

GLUTEN FREE VEGAN PANCAKES X2

GLUTEN FREE VEGAN PANCAKES X2

Most days I am too busy to make a special breakfast for kids but I do make up for it in the weekend. They both love pancakes and don’t even notice that I am using gluten free flour to make them. There is always the obligatory maple syrup but also various fruit. The favourites are bananas, strawberries and blueberries.

Recently I created two recipes for pancakes. One was made out of the necessity to use up two large overripe bananas. The two recipes differ in texture. The banana pancake is softer and fluffier. The other has a bit more firm texture and will work wonderfully with blueberries added to the batter. Unlike the banana ones the batter can be made en evening in advance ready for the morning. The banana batter would go unappetising grey colour…

They make a lovely quick dessert too. You can serve them with caramelised bananas deglazed with rum for a grown up flavour. Or with a chocolate syrup and some vegan vanilla ice cream.

My kids liked both versions. I don’t think they had a firm favourite and since my daughter hates bananas with a passion I may be making the banana ones bit more often. PS: Mother in law tested too :)

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GLUTEN FREE VEGAN PANCAKES

ingredients
1 cup buckwheat flour
1 cup gluten free flour (I used Dove’s organics)
2 tsp gluten free baking powder (I used Dove’s)
1 flax egg
1 and 3/4 cup non dairy milk ( I used almond)
1 tbs maple syrup
1 tbs of coconut oil for frying

method
  • First prepare the flax egg by combining 1 tbs of ground flax and 3 tbs of water. Let sit for 5 min to form a gel like texture.
  • Combine the two flours and baking powder, mix together.
  • Add the milk, flax egg and maple syrup.
  • In a large non-stick (I use Green Pan) heat up tsp of the coconut oil.
  • Drop large tablespoons of batter in the oil. Turn when bubbles start to form on surface.
  • Repeat with rest of the batter, adding a little of bit of the coconut oil when needed.

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GLUTEN FREE VEGAN BANANA PANCAKES

ingredients
2 large overripe bananas
1 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
1 tsp gluten free baking powder
1 cup almond milk
1 tbs coconut oil for frying

  • Mash the bananas well.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients. Mix well.
  • In a large non-stick (I use Green Pan) heat up tsp of the coconut oil.
  • Drop large tablespoons of batter in the oil. Turn when bubbles start to form on surface.
  • Repeat with rest of the batter, adding a little of bit of the coconut oil when needed.

the banana ones
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LIGHT LENTIL, SPINACH AND POTATO CURRY

LIGHT LENTIL, SPINACH AND POTATO CURRY

You may think having a curry is not a good idea in the summery weather but I could argue that is always summer in India… This recipe is light, no heavy sauce or too much oil like you might get in your takeaway. The main ingredients are some of the favourite among the plant based folk; potatoes and lentils. Both are indeed very filling and satisfying.

Yesterday, we had few friends over for a mezze type eating feast. My Brazilian friend announced she was brining Brazilian potato salad. I didn’t want to rain on her thunder but I needed to let her know that I am also using potatoes. I was making a spiced Indian potato salad… To my delight she swept my worries away with a firm: “You can’t ever have enough potatoes!”

Lentils, unlike beans, are known to be easily cooked even without soaking. That may be a convenient feature but I still recommend soaking all pulses, even the very small red lentils. It takes a bit of planning, but if you know you will be making some delicious lentil curry or soup in the evening just start soaking your lentils in the morning (or indeed the evening before). Beans, I preferably soak for 24 hrs. The soaking degrades phytic acid that minerals in the pulses are bound to, thus soaking them will make the minerals easier to absorb.

Another good idea is to cook your pulses with a piece of kombu seaweed. The kombu softens and you can either munch on it (it is a bit slimy…) or blend it into a sauce or soup. Kombu is traditionally used in Japanese broths to add flavour but when cooked with beans or lentils it increases digestibility and reduces the notorious gassiness… Skimming the foam off the surface will also reduce the gas production later :)

In this recipe I have used lentils verte (Puy), these are not traditionally used in Indian cooking, but I wanted the texture of these European lentils. Indian dals tend to be more mushy and soupy ( and I do love them) but sometimes it doesn’t hurt to experiment a little. French - Indian fusion, this may just catch on...

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LIGHT LENTIL, SPINACH AND POTATO CURRY
serves 4

ingredients
250g dried lentils, I used lentils verte - Puy (or 2 tins of puy lentils) soaked for 12 hrs
1 - 1inch piece of kombu seeweed (optional)
2 tsp coconut oil
10 curry leaves
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp nigella or black mustard seeds
2 tsp coconut oil
1 large red onion, sliced
3 cloves of garlic, grated or crushed
1 thumb piece of ginger, grated
1 green chilli, finely chopped (optional)
1/2-1tsp Kashmiri chilli powder (or other chilli powder)
1 tsp turmeric
2 tbs tomato puree
3 medium sized tomatoes, chopped and if you wish peeled and deseeded
1 and 1/2 - 2 cups water (this will depend on how juicy your tomatoes are)
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch dice
200g spinach
1tsp garam masala.

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method
  • First cook the lentils with the kombu in plenty of water for 20-30 minutes until they are just tender but still retaining shape. Drain and set aside
  • In a large sauté pan with a lid heat the coconut oil. Add the curry leaves, cumin and mustard (nigella) seeds. Heat till the mustard seeds start to pop and you can smell the aroma of spices. Take care not to burn.
  • Next add the onion and cook till soft and golden.
  • Add the ginger, onion, chopped green chilli (or add it whole with a slit down its side for less heat). Cook for 1 minute before adding the Kashmiri chilli powder and turmeric. Heat the spices for about 30 seconds.
  • Next step is to add tomato puree and chopped tomatoes, cover with a lid and cook gently for about 10 minutes of till the tomatoes start to soften.
  • When the tomatoes are soft and pulpy add 1 and 1/2 to 2 cups of water (can use vegetable stock for even more depth of flavour). Add the potatoes and cook for about 15 minuter or until potatoes are tender.
  • Finally add the lentils and cook very gently for another 10 min to allow the flavours to combine. Towards the end stir through the spinach and garam masala and check for seasoning. Cook briefly just to let the spinach wilt into the curry.
  • Serve with rice, Indian bread and Kachumbar.


Kachumbar recipe:
http://www.plantstrongliving.co.uk/blog_files/3b5e144dc81a7f3dcff107839b220c7c-107.html

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