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Shrove Tuesday Pancakes

CLASSIC PANCAKES

Whether you make your pancakes thick or thin is a matter of taste. Once cooked, sprinkle with sugar and lemon juice for a classic finish,  or top with any of your favourite ingredients. I love the tasty combination of lemon, sugar and golden syrup for extra sweetness, but I’m sure you have your own. Just make sure you’ve plenty if the ingredients in as there really is only one day of the year when you can indulge and treat yourself to that extra pancake or two.

 

Makes 8-10 pancakes

INGREDIENTS

125g plain flour

Pinch of salt

2 large eggs

275ml milk

25g butter, melted

Sunflower or vegetable oil for cooking

METHOD

Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Beat the eggs into the milk and pour onto the flour. Whisk well until the batter is smooth and creamy. If there are any lumps, simply pass the batter through a sieve into a jug.

Leave for 30 minutes or longer if you have time, and then whisk in the melted butter.

Heat a pancake pan or non-stick frying pan (about 18cm diameter) over a medium heat and rub the surface with some kitchen roll dipped in the oil. Pour only enough batter into the pan so that when you swirl the pan it just covers the surface in a thin layer.

Cook for about 30 seconds or so until the edges start to curl up and the underside is golden. Flip over and cook the other side.

Slide onto a plate and either serve straight away or keep warm in layers between sheets of greaseproof paper while making the rest.

BAKED CHILLI AND CORIANDER PANCAKES

And for those of you who don’t have a sweet tooth – you need not miss out. These savoury ones are equally as delicious.

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

1tbsp olive oil

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

500g minced beef

1 glass of red wine

400g tin of chopped tomatoes

1 heaped tbsp tomato purée

1 red chilli, chopped with seeds, or 11/2 to 2tsp dried chilli flakes

1tsp each of ground cumin and coriander

1/2tsp ground cinnamon

1 beef stock cube

400g tin kidney beans, drained

1 bunch of coriander leaves, chopped

1 x basic pancake batter with the addition of 2tbsp chopped coriander

100g cheddar cheese, grated

METHOD

To make the chilli, heat the oil in a saucepan and then sauté the onion and garlic over a medium heat until they are softened but not coloured.

Increase the heat and add the mince, cooking quickly until it is browned, breaking down any chunks of meat with a wooden spoon. Pour in the wine and bring to the boil.

Stir in the tinned tomatoes, tomato purée, chilli, cumin, coriander and cinnamon and crumble in the stock cube. Season with salt and pepper and bring to a simmer.

Cover loosely with a lid and cook for 30-45 minutes. Stir the kidney beans and coriander into the chilli and cook uncovered for 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 220C/ gas 7. Make the pancakes according to the basic pancake recipe (see left), stirring the coriander into the finished batter. Stack the cooked pancakes between pieces of greaseproof paper while making the rest.

Fold each pancake in half and then half again, creating a triangle with 2 pockets. Spoon some of the chilli into the pancake pockets and place in an ovenproof dish.

Scatter over the cheese and bake in the oven for about 20 minutes until golden. Serve the pancakes hot with any or all of the serving suggestions below:

Guacamole and/or sour cream

1 onion, chopped

Green salad

Lime wedges

Jalapeno chillies

TIP: It’s well worth making double of the chilli so you have plenty for another day. Store in the fridge for a few days or freeze.

Photography: garethmorgans.com

Ideal Home Show – Kids’ Recipes

After a fun day doing cookery demos at the London Ideal Home Show 2011, I thought I would post the recipes I did. They all went really well – with minimal hiccups (okay so the Ham and Sweetcorn Pancakes were a little too ‘golden’ but still tasted great!). The theme was ‘yummy Mummy’ so for anyone cooking for the kids and family, you’ll love these. In addition to the recipes below, I also did Italian Baked Meatballs http://jopratt.co.uk/archives/243

RAISIN AND ORANGE MUFFINS

These are great for a ‘food on the move’ snack when you’re in the car or out and about, as they shouldn’t crumble into a million pieces. The kids (and you) will love the juicy raisins and zesty orange flavour and you can feel happy knowing that they are tucking into a treat that isn’t totally unhealthy. This is also a brilliant recipe for the children to get involved in making.

makes 20 muffins

200g wholemeal self-raising flour (or 100g white and 100g wholemeal self-raising flour)
2 tsp baking powder
100g soft brown sugar
finely grated zest of 1 large orange
125g raisins
3 tbsp sunflower oil
2 large eggs
250ml natural yoghurt
1-2 tbsp demerara sugar
Preheat the oven to 190ºC/fan 170ºC/gas 5.

Place 20 fairy cake cases in a patty tin.

Stir together the flour, baking powder, soft brown sugar, orange zest and raisins. Add the oil, eggs and yoghurt and mix until just combined. Try not to over mix otherwise the muffins won’t rise as well when cooking. Spoon into the cake cases and scatter demerara sugar over each one.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the muffins have risen and are golden brown. Remove from the oven and cool slightly before eating warm, or to eat later, leave the muffins until cool and store in an airtight container for a couple of days. You can also freeze the muffins, and defrost at room temperature before eating.

CREAMY PEA SOUP WITH HAM AND SWEETCORN PANCAKES

This soup is a really simple and very quick recipe that’s ideal  for when you’re short of supplies but still want to serve a healthy homemade meal to the family. To accompany the soup the children will love the pancakes, especially if they help make them.

serves 2 adults and about 8 children’s portions

for the soup:

2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
800ml chicken or vegetable stock
500g frozen peas
100g cream cheese or mascarpone
handful of basil leaves (optional)

for the pancakes:

200g plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 eggs, beaten
100ml milk
300g tin of sweetcorn, drained
2-3 slices of ham, finely chopped
4 spring onions, chopped
olive oil

To make the soup, heat the olive oil in a saucepan and sauté the onion for about 5 minutes until it’s softened but not coloured. Add the stock, increase the heat and as soon as it is boiling, stir in the peas. Return to the boil and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in the cream cheese or mascarpone and season with a little salt and pepper if you wish. Stir in the basil leaves, if using.

Blitz the soup in a food processor, blender or using a hand blender until smooth.

To make the pancakes, beat together the flour, baking powder, eggs and milk until you have a smooth batter. Stir in the sweetcorn, ham, spring onion, and some seasoning.

Heat a little olive oil in a non-stick frying pan or pancake pan. Drop 2 tablespoons of batter per pancake into the pan and cook as many as will fit comfortably, for a couple of minutes until bubbles rise to the surface and the bases are golden. Carefully turn over and cook for a further 2 minutes, again until the bases are golden.

Keep warm while you continue with the remaining batter, adding more oil to the pan as you go.

Serve the pancakes with the warm soup either in bowls or mugs.

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