This pancake recipe has become a favourite of mine. For both wholesomeness and flavour, I’m a huge fan of using nut-based flours instead of gluten wherever possible, and this dish is ideal for anyone with a gluten or dairy intolerance. The cashew milk is a cinch to make, but you can use almond or pistachio milk for variety. These pancakes might not be as fluffy as white wheat flour pancakes, but they will certainly be healthier, with a lot more texture and taste.
(makes about 12 pancakes)
100g icing sugar
250g ground almonds
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
a pinch of fine table salt
coconut oil spray or vegetable oil spray, for cooking the pancakes
seasonal fruit, prepared as necessary, to serve
basil cress, to garnish
For the pear and fig jam :
2 figs, peeled and chopped
2 pears, peeled, cored and chopped
For the Cashew Milk :
200g unsalted cashew nuts, soaked
overnight in 60ml cold water or to cover
For the peanut butter cream
165ml double cream
35g smooth peanut butter
1 teaspoon sugar
a pinch of fine table salt
The jam can be made up to two weeks in advance and stored in a covered container in the fridge until required. Put the sugar, figs and pears in a saucepan over a medium heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves and the fruit breaks down, then bring to the boil, without stirring. Reduce the heat to low and leave to simmer until the mixture reduces by 20 per cent and you can drag a spoon across the bottom of the pan without the line filling in. Leave to cool completely,then cover and chill until required.
The cashew milk and the peanut butter cream can both be made up to two days in advance and chilled until required. To make the cashew milk, transfer the nuts and their soaking water to a blender or food processor and blitz until well blended and creamy. Cover and chill until required.
To make the peanut butter cream, place all the ingredients in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Cover and chill until required.
The actual pancake mixture can also be made up to two days in advance, then covered and chilled until required. Break the eggs into a bowl and lightly beat. Sift over the icing sugar, then beat together until light and fluffy. Stir in the ground almonds and vanilla paste, and continue beating until combined. Gradually beat in the cashew milk until all the ingredients are blended. Season with salt to taste, then cover and chill.
When ready to cook, heat a crêpe pan or frying pan over a medium heat and spray with coconut or vegetable oil. Add 2 generous tablespoons of the pancake mix to the pan and fry for 3 minutes, or until the top is almost set and the consistency isn’t gooey any longer; you want it to be set enough to be able to flip it over. If the first pancake breaks, don’t worry – for some reason it happens to every chef across the world for the first pancake cooked.
Once the top is set, flip the pancake over and cook the other side for 2 minutes. Remove from the pan and keep hot until all the batter is used. Cook as many pancakes at once as will fit in the pan without overcrowding, adding extra coconut oil if necessary between batches.
Divide the pancakes among 4 plates and top with the fig and pear jam and the peanut butter cream. Add fresh fruit, garnish with cress and serve immediately.