Friday night dinners have to be quick and easy, just because it’s Friday, really! Rainbow pancakes are ideal as they are super tasty and don’t take much time to make.
So what was used from the veg box? One of the carrots (I’m gradually making my way through them), a handful of chard and then the cherry tomatoes, not for the pancakes but roasted on the side – oh and they tasted sublime!
For the sharp eyed, you’ll notice there is an interloper in the veg ingredients – I snuck in some sweet potato, not just for the gorgeous colour but to use as a binding agent. Once steamed and puréed, sweet potato goes a little gloopy, and works brilliantly helping to hold everything together in gluten free plant based recipes. They also contribute towards the texture and can be added in surprisingly well to a variety of recipes – anyone tried my sweet potato chocolate brownies…..?
The other key ingredient in the pancakes is the flour – for this particular pancake I’ve used chickpea flour (otherwise known as besan or gram flour). I first discovered this flour when living in India, and find myself using it more and more, simply because it’s amazing! First it has a strong flavour so contributes a savoury taste. It’s packed with minerals, particularly magnesium, B vitamins and is a great source of protein and of course fibre. Finally, it’s gluten free and really adaptable for all sorts of recipes. Don’t try to lick the bowl though, as it tastes pretty foul when raw!
To finish off the dish, I made a spinach and walnut pesto sauce as it needed a little something on the side, and that’s what I had in the fridge!
So give this a go – it takes about 20 minutes in total if you already have some sweet potato pureé to hand. Enjoy!
Rainbow savoury pancakes
1 cup chickpea flour/besan/gram flour
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 medium carrot, grated
2 small sweet potatoes, steamed and mashed
handful parsley, chopped
salt and pepper
First, heat the oven to 180ºC, place the cherry tomatoes still on their stems into a baking tray with a splash of olive oil and pop in the oven to roast for 15 minutes or so.
Wash the chard and separate the stem and leaves. Finely chop the stem and put to one side. Place the leaves into a frying pan and dry fry for a couple of minutes to remove some of the water. Leave to cool.
Whilst the tomatoes are roasting, make the pancakes. Place the flour, turmeric, baking powder and salt into a bowl and mix together well. Add most of the water to make a thick batter. Stir in the sweet potato, chopped chard stems, chopped chard leaves, grated carrot and parsley and mix together really well until everything is combined. Add a little more water if needed. Season with salt and pepper.
Heat a drop of oil in a pan and dollop 2-3 spoonfuls into the middle, spreading it out to make a large pancake. Cook for a couple of minutes until starting to brown, then flip and cook the other side. Slide out onto a warm plate and repeat until all the mixture is used up.
Cut each pancake into fours, then serve with the roasted tomatoes and some pesto or sauce of choice.