Pancake Day (Shrove Tuesday) Recipe Round-Up

Who else is stoked about Pancake Day? Also known as Shrove Tuesday, this is the day before the start of Lent, when you are meant to give up all rich, fattening foods until Easter, when you get to indulge again.

I’m not religious, but I love the national enthusiasm for Pancake Day in the UK. I have been happily celebrating it these last few years and so have developed a solid arsenal of pancake recipes, from delicate French crêpes to fluffy American pancakes, in all sorts of flavours to satisfy vegans across the world.

I hope you enjoy Pancake Day and eat as many pancakes as your little heart desires, whether you intend to fast until Easter or not. As for me, we all know I’m no good at restriction. But one thing I do know how to do, and that is to indulge.

Cardamom Pancake Stack with Sweet Potato Chocolate Frosting
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Lemon Poppyseed Pancakes
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Crêpes with Nutella
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‘Butterberryscotch’ Crêpes
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Crêpes with Sweet Chestnut Cream
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Spiced Pumpkin Crêpes with Hot Chocolate Sauce and Speculaas Dust
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Upside-Down Peach Pancakes For One with Cashew Butter (gluten and wheat-free)
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Pumpkin Pie Pancakes
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Poached Pears Crêpes
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‘Freckled’ Crêpes
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And saving the best for last…

Pancake Tower Cake with Chestnut Cream Filling and Hazelnut Butter Drizzle
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Stay tuned tomorrow morning to see what my Pancake Day breakfast will be!

What is your favourite Pancake Day recipe?

Love and cookies,
TheVeganCookieFairySignature #2

Cardamom Pancake Stack with Sweet Potato Chocolate Frosting

CardamomPancakeStack_title2Hello sweet friends! Yes, another pancake stack cake. I can’t promise I won’t make more. If you think about it, it’s perfectly logical: they are both a breakfast food and a dessert, and they are the embodiment of Pancake Day. (Who’s excited??? It can’t be just me!!!) Surely I need not explain any further.

IMG_1060cardamomchocpancakestackYes, you did read that right: you can eat these for breakfast. You can eat anything for breakfast, technically, be it salad or cupcake, but let me elaborate: what I mean is that (and for many reasons I loathe to say this, but it’s true) this is a healthy cake.

Don’t shoot, please – hear me out!

IMG_1066I hate it when people say: ‘This cake/cupcake/cookie is healthy, it’s good for you!’ Let’s be honest, if it’s dessert, it’s never really that healthy. You shouldn’t eat it every day, even if it is sugar-free, low-fat, animal-free, whatever. Dessert will always be dessert, unless you happen to think raw carrot is a sweet treat. I’ve been guilty of saying it before, but it always irks me; it makes me feel like some gimmicky fad diet marketer.

IMG_1069This cake, though it should not be consumed daily but only as a occasional meal for celebration, is made of mostly natural ingredients. The sweetness comes from the sweet potatoes (more on those later) or xylitol or stevia. It won’t spike your blood sugar levels, it won’t mess with your cholesterol. It’s a whole lot of carbohydrates, yes, but that’s why I chose spelt flour, not processed white flour. The ground flaxseed add omega 6 and9’s,which are essential to a healthy diet. If you wanted to make the frosting super duper healthy, you could use raw cacao powder instead of melted chocolate.

So you see, eating some of this cake won’t make you diabetic, it won’t give you cancer. It won’t make you skinny either, though, but no one ever said Pancake Day would do that.

IMG_1054My point really is: just eat what you want. Try to limit processed ingredients that deep down you know aren’t good for you, but you will never, ever hear me say you should not eat them at all. You get one life. You shouldn’t spend if feeling rotten about yourself.

Happy Pancake Day to all of you lovely cookie monsters!IMG_1071

Note: Most of you will be thinking: ‘Clem, you’ve lost it this time. Sweet potatoes in my frosting? Shut the front door.’ I got the idea from the lovely Elenore over at Earthsprout. She’s a goddess in the kitchen, so if you don’t trust my word, trust hers.

Cardamom Pancake Stack with Sweet Potato Chocolate Frosting

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Sweet potato chocolate frosting:

2 large sweet potatoes
100g (3.5 oz) dark chocolate
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 tbsp cocoa powder (optional)

Pre-heat oven to 200ºC (400ºF) and line a baking tray with baking parchment.

Cut the sweet potatoes in quarters, lengthways. Spray with a little oil. Roast for 1 hour or until fork tender.

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Cool on a wire rack before scooping the flesh out of the skins. Mash with a fork.

Melt chocolate and coconut oil au bain-marie; i.e. place a bowl over a pot of boiling water on the stove. The heat will slowly melt the coconut oil and chocolate.

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Fold the melted chocolate into the mashed sweet potato. Add cocoa powder for a more intense chocolate flavour. Marvel at those colours.

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Set aside in the fridge until needed.

Cardamom pancakes:

190g spelt flour (I think that make 1 + 1/2 cups? I didn’t measure it myself, only used a conversion chart. At any rate it should weigh 6.7 oz)
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
3 tbsp xylitol or 3-ish tsp stevia
1 tsp ground cardamom
375ml (1 + 1/2 cups) soya milk
¼ tsp vanilla paste
2 tbsp ground flaxseed

In a small bowl mix the ground flaxseed with 6 tablespoons of water. Set aside to gel. This mixture will thicken and act as an egg replacer to bind the batter.

Sift the remaining dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Fold in the vanilla paste, flax eggs and soya milk until fully incorporated.

Grease a large, thin frying pan with a little coconut oil. Place on medium heat.

Drop one ladleful of batter into the pan, spreading it not too thinly into a 10cm (5”) diameter circle. Cook on one side for 3-5 minutes, until small bubbles appear on the top and the sides firm up. Bravely flip (aided by a spatula if need be). Cook on the other side till firm.

Place the pancake onto a clean plate. Repeat this process until the batter is exhausted. You should have 6 pancakes.

To assemble:

Spread a tablespoon of frosting onto each pancake, save one. Stack the pancakes, frosted side up. Place the remaining pancake on top. Generously cover the sides and top of the stack with the rest of the frosting.

Decorate with maple-roasted nuts and seeds if desired. Eat for dessert or breakfast—or whenever you damn please!

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What are you planning this Pancake Day/Mardis Gras/Shrove Tuesday?

Love and cookies,

TheVeganCookieFairySignature #2

Pancake Tower Cake with Hazelnut Butter Drizzle & Chestnut Cream Filling

 
Can Pancake Day just happen already?
When is March 4 going to arrive?! Am I the only one looking forward to devouring a huge stack of pancakes this year? Not that I need an excuse, as clearly I made this pancake cake and devoured it all by myself (though not in one day).
Admittedly, it’s not the prettiest cake in the world. If you waited for the hazelnut butter drizzle to solidify a little and if you doubled or tripled the quantity you could probably coat the sides and top of the cake, like frosting. But I was in the mood for a messy cake. Sometimes, life is messy, and you just have to try and see the beauty in it somewhere.
I can think of few things more satisfying than cutting myself a fat slice from this colourful, gooey mess of a cake. Devour that slice and show her who’s boss.

Pancake Tower Cake with Hazelnut Butter Drizzle and Chestnut Cream

For the pancake stack

80g (1/2 cup) caster sugar
80g (1/2 cup) spelt flour
80g (1/2 cup) self-raising flour
¾ tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 flax eggs*
250ml (1 cup) almond milk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp vanilla paste

Mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl. In another, smaller bowl, pour the apple cider vinegar into the almond milk and vanilla paste so the milk can curdle. Set aside for a couple of minutes.

Fold the wet ingredients into the dry until just combined.

Place a wide, flat frying pan over high heat and lightly spray with oil or grease with vegan butter. Pour one ladleful of pancake batter into the pan, spreading it so that it becomes an even circle. Cook for a few minutes or until bubbles start to op up on its surface, then flip and cook for another minute or so. Check for done-ness, then flip onto a plate.

Repeat this process 6 more times, or until batter runs out. 

For the chestnut cream

2x 240g (8.4 oz) tins of peeled chestnuts
250ml (1 cup) hazelnut or almond milk (but hazelnut is better)
1 tbsp sugar

Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender and whizz until smooth and creamy. You will need a powerful processor or blender for this; the consistency should be like thick ice cream.

Spread the chestnut cream onto six of the seven pancakes. Stack the cream-slathered pancakes on top of each other, the last one on top being the one without cream.

For the hazelnut butter drizzle

125ml (1/2 cup) hazelnut milk
3 tbsp hazelnut butter

Melt the two ingredients together in a small saucepan over high heat, stirring quickly all the while. Pour the still warm hazelnut butter drizzle over the pancake stack.

Garnish the cake with some berries and roughly chopped pistachios and hazelnuts.

Note: One flax egg is made by mixing 1 tbsp ground flaxseed with 3 tbsp water. Set aside for a couple of minutes to gel before adding it to your batter.




Any good plans or recipes for Pancake Day this year?

Love and cookies,

 

Pumpkin Spice Crêpes with Speculaas Dust and Hot Chocolate Sauce

Sundays are my sacred days. I give myself a break from my daily morning yoga routine and instead drape myself in my (bath)robe and commence a pilgrimage to my temple — aka my kitchen. I will whip up a divine breakfast, anything I fancy that morning — usually pancakes of a sort, every once in a blue moon I dust off my waffle iron, sometimes it’s an exotic juice, but lately I have felt a surge of patriotism that has led me to consume numerous crêpes. 

Crêpes are served both as a breakfast and a dessert in France and Belgium, so it’s little wonder that the lines get blurred between the two (but not in the gross Robin Thicke way). Crêpes Mikado was always my favourite meal (lunch, dinner, breakfast, quatre-heure, it didn’t matter to me): one gorgeous golden crêpe topped with no less than three scoops of vanilla ice cream, a heavenly mound of crème chantilly, and then drizzled with hot, creamy, luscious dark chocolate sauce. Safe to say the French invented food porn, those sauce minxes. 

Sunday breakfasts in my household equal decadence and pleasure. I gathered all my favourite foods — pumpkin, chocolate and Speculaas, that delectable biscuit — to create the ultimate lazy weekend breakfast for you. And best of all, you can be utterly selfish and enjoy it all to yourself. 


Note: I know this sounds like a lot of liquid, but such is the nature of crêpe batter. A thick, lumpy batter simply won’t spread to create the thin crêpe you’re after. Add the liquid little by little to the dry ingredients if you have difficulty getting rid of any lumps – or use a food processor or blender to do the job for you. 

Serves one gleeful person

Pumpkin Spice Crêpes

70g (1/2 cup) plain flour
60ml (1/4 cup) pumpkin puree
310ml (1 + 1/4 cup) soya or almond milk
3/4 tsp all spice (or Speculaas spice)
2 tbsp soft brown sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla paste
some vegan butter for greasing

Process all the ingredients in a blender or food processor until you obtain a smooth batter. 

Melt a generous tsp of butter in a large flat frying pan on high heat. Swirl the pan to cover its entire surface in butter. 

Pour half of the batter into the pan, swirling again to spread it evenly. Cook the batter until the sides of the crêpe begins to curl up. Lower the heat if you fear the pancake is starting to burn. 

Flip the pancake carefully — with a spatula if you feel cautious, or with a deft swing of your wrist if you feel brave. Cook the crêpe on the other side for 2-3 minutes. Flip it onto a plate and repeat the process with the rest of the batter (don’t forget to grease the pan again). 

Serve with hot chocolate sauce and a dusting of Speculaas (see below).


Chocolate sauce

3 tsp dark cocoa powder
80ml (1/3 cup) soya or almond milk
a pinch of stevia or a drop of maple syrup

Mix the cocoa powder with a little milk to create a paste, then pour the rest of the milk in as you keep whisking to ensure the cocoa is perfectly blended in. Add the sweetener. Warm the chocolate sauce in a small saucepan until it just starts bubbling. Drizzle hot over the crêpes.


Speculaas Dusting

2 Speculaas biscuits

Crumble the biscuits to a fine powder; you can do this by hand or in a food processor. Sprinkle over the crêpes.


Do you have a sacred day, or a ritual you have to complete in order to feel yourself again?


Upside-Down Peach Pancakes For One

This summer has been extraordinary for me. I have had the good fortune of completing a lovely and invaluable internship at what I personally think is a great little publisher – amongst other things, it has taught me that print publishing is not dead but alive and kicking. The weather has been glorious; my sister’s baby, my very first nephew was born on the 24th of June, making him another 24 baby in the family (all but one of my siblings, myself included, were born on the 24th of a month); I’ve graduated with all my best friends from university and was accepted at my university of choice for my masters degree. 


But it has not been a restful summer. Not by a long shot. 

I am frankly exhausted and ready for a good rest. On Tuesday I leave for Naples, Italy, where I plan on eating loads of pizza and pasta, lying by the seaside reading novels I’ve been meaning to read for years, leisurely strolling through museums and historic ruins, and sleeping in every single day. 

Because when I come back from Italy it’ll be the hustle and bustle again: I’ll have only a few days to pack up everything I own, have a quick birthday celebration/going away party with my friends, and then be off… I’ll you tell you where when I get there. I can’t wait, but I’m not looking forward to how draining it all will be. 


So these pancakes. My pancakes for one; for when you need to sleep in by yourself, and take half the morning to stretch and rise and read a book before strolling through to the kitchen. This recipe comes together very easily; the only part that will require your patience is when you have to wait to flip the pancake. It’s crucial that you let it cook properly. But in the end you will be rewarded with two glorious, fat pancakes, golden brown on one side and jewelled with a star shape of peach slices, gorgeously caramelised, on the other. One bite into their tender, juicy flesh, and all is well in the world once more. 

Just a little something from me to you, to help you through the selfish days when you just need to be by yourself for once, to recharge your wee batteries. 


Serves one, makes two pancakes

85g (1/2 cup) self-raising gluten and wheat-free flour
2 tbsp brown sugar
125ml (1/2 cup) homemade cashew milk
1/2 mashed banana
1 tbsp maca powder
2 tsp raw coconut oil, melted at room temperature, plus extra to grease the pan
1/2 peach, sliced in half moons
a little bit of homemade cashew butter, to serve
a drizzle of maple syrup, to serve

Whisk the mashed banana, sugar, cashew milk and coconut oil in a bowl until thoroughly combined. 
Add the remaining dry ingredients, lightly whisk again without over-mixing. 
Place a small frying pan over medium heat and drizzle in a teaspoon or two of coconut oil into it. Let it get hot. 
Meanwhile slice your half of a peach into thin half moons. 
Scoop up a good dollop of batter and drop it into the pan, spreading it into a flat circle with the back of your spoon. Firmly press the peach half moons into a star or flower shape on the upside of your pancake. Let it cook for 5-6 minutes, checking for bubbles to appear on the top side, then carefully flip your pancake. This is a delicate endeavour, so proceed with care. Let the pancake cook for another 3-4 minutes on the other side, pressing ever so lightly with your spatula.
Repeat once more with the remainder of the batter and peach slices. 
Serve with some homemade cashew butter and a drizzle of maple syrup. Bask in the glory of this indulgent and much-deserved breakfast. 

Notes:
• You could use any shop-bought dairy-free milk, of course. And of course you can use shop-bought cashew butter, or almond butter, or any that you fancy. It’s your day, after all, and you get to be as lazy as you like. 
• You don’t have to use gluten and wheat-free flour if you don’t want to. Regular flour will work just fine; just make sure it is self-raising, or else add 1/2 tsp baking powder. 
• You could leave out the maca but… don’t. It’s really really lovely with peaches. As is coconut oil. And it’s good for you. So just eat it. 
 
My lovelies, I won’t be posting anything for a good week while I stuff myself with pizza. Which may or may not contain cheese. Cheese is hard to avoid in Italy. But that’s ok. Because in this non-vegan world, you’ve got to be a little flexible. And because I’m going on holiday and I just don’t want to overthink it. So have a good week, and I’ll be back with more recipes in a short while.

xoxo


Pumpkin Pie Pancakes


Sunday. November. Pumpkin. Cinnamon. 


Autumn is here 🙂 


Serves 2, yields 4 pancakes
Ingredients:
3 tbsps pumpkin puree
2-3 tbsps brown sugar
200g wholemeal plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
125–150ml almond milk
2 tsps cinnamon
1 tsp mixed spices (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves)
organic, pure maple syrup to serve (optional)

Instructions:

Heat a pan over medium heat with a little bit of oil sprayed in it. 
In a bowl, beat the sugar and pumpkin puree together, slowly pouring milk into the mixture. Add the flour, spices and baking powder and mix again until just combined.  
Spoon the batter into the pan and form a pancake. When the top of the pancake starts to bubble and the sides are firm you can flip it (with the help of a spatula if necessary). Cook for a few minutes on the other side and then serve. 
Top with maple syrup and tuck in!

Happy Sunday morning, everyone!

— Clem