For this vegan pancake I wanted something as close as possible to the traditional pancake batter my Dad used to make on Shrove Tuesday, and something suitable for baby-led weaning. In a break from the simple dinners my Mam made daily, my brothers and I used to stuff ourselves silly on innumerable rounds of pancakes with lemon juice. I can still remember the feeling of rubbing my full belly while insisting I could fit one more in. While testing I was told this recipe is a lot lighter than those made with eggs and butter and cow’s milk – Dave said you don’t have that “heavy stomach” feeling afterwards. The baby was quite keen on them too!
- 2 cups soy or oat milk
- 2 tablespoons ground flax seed
- 1 cup spelt flour
- ½ cup white flour
- ¼ cup applesauce
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Vegetable oil, for the pan
- Gently heat a large pan over a low heat.
- In a medium sized bowl, whisk flax seed and soy or oat milk with a fork until some bubbles appear. Let sit for 5 minutes.
- In a large bowl, sift spelt and white flour together and make a well in the centre.
- Add applesauce, olive oil and 1 cup of milk-flax mixture to the flour and whisk with your fork, gradually drawing the flour into the applesauce, oil and milk. Once all the flour is incorporated, beat until you have a smooth, thick paste. Add more of the milk-flax mixture if it is too stiff to beat.
- Add the remainder of the milk-flax mixture to loosen the batter up and whisk until everything is well incorporated. A few lumps are okay. You should now have pancake batter that is creamy in consistency.
- Turn the heat up to medium-high and heat until your pan is hot enough - see the tips if you are not sure.
- Swirl a tablespoon of oil around the pan and use a ladle to pour your batter onto the pan. Gently and quickly swirl the batter around the pan. Let the pancake cook undisturbed for at least 30 seconds until golden brown underneath.
- Ease a fish slice under the pancake, lift it and flip it over. The pancake should be lying flat against the bottom of the pan - no folds. Allow to cook for another minute or so before turning out onto a wire rack if serving later or a hot plate if serving immediately.
- The pancakes can be frozen for 1 month and can also be made a day ahead and gently reheated in a pan.
6 Savoury Toppings:
- Cashew butter + sliced tomatoes + basil
- Pesto + vegan mayo + olives + cherry tomatoes
(olives are not suitable for babies due to salt content)
- Grilled mushrooms + roasted red peppers + hummus
- Mashed chickpeas + vegan mayo + grated carrot + grated celery + smoked paprika
- Sliced avocado + tomato salsa + lime juice
- Crispy tempeh + lettuce + tomato
6 Sweet Toppings:
- Peanut butter + banana.
(Slice banana lengthwise for a baby or toddler to aid grip and prevent choking.
- Raspberry chia jam
- Banana soft serve + desiccated coconut
- Almond butter + sliced apples
- Hazelnut butter + melted chocolate + strawberries
6 Tips for flop-free pancakes.
- The first pancake will almost always fail. Accept this and move on.
- Don’t let your batter sit for longer than half an hour. When you mix wet and dry ingredients, gluten is activated and too much will make your pancake tough. This is a low-gluten recipe but it’s still there.
- Make sure your pan is hot enough. When a drop of water sizzles and dances on the pan before disappearing then the pan has been heated to the right temperature.
- Don’t mix extras with a high water content in. No berries. It’s not that kind of pancake. Save it for the toppings.
- Always re-oil your pan. Every time.
- Don’t forget to serve yourself some.