Tuesday, September 21, 2010

green pancakes with lime butter

I don't know about you, but as the light and temperature start making an autumnal shift I find my tastes changing, too. I find myself wanting and making more savory things, replacing much of the sweetness that is on our table in summer. I recently discovered a savory pancake recipe I'm sure I'll make again and again.

Since the book came out a few months ago I've been cooking a lot from Yotam Ottolenghi's Plenty. Many of the recipes have appeared in his New Vegetarian column in the Guardian's Weekend magazine, and there are also many new highly original vegetarian dishes. (And the photography in the book is amazing - that alone makes it worth owning.) One of my favorites from the book, so far, is the green pancakes with lime butter; they're great for a weekend brunch served with a side of greens. I modify the recipe to account for my children's aversion to anything too spicy, but left notes about what I omitted so that you may add them in if you like.

There will be extra lime butter. Use it on a baked sweet potato (Ottolenghi's suggestion).

Green pancakes with lime butter
adapted slightly from Yotam Ottolenghi's Plenty

Serves 3-4
1 cup spinach, washed
1/2 cup self-rising flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 egg
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cumin
150 ml milk
6 medium scallions, finely sliced
(2 fresh green chillies, thinly sliced - I left these out to make the dish more kid-friendly)
1 egg white
olive oil for frying

Lime butter
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
grated zest of 1 lime
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 tbsp chopped coriander
1/2 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/4 tsp chilli flakes

Start with the lime butter. Put the butter in a medium bowl and beat it with a wooden spoon until it turns soft and creamy. Stir in the rest of the ingredients. Tip onto a sheet of plastic wrap and roll into a sausage shape. Twist the ends of the film to seal the flavored butter. Chill until firm.

Wilt the spinach in a pan with a splash of water. Drain in a colander. When cool, squeeze hard with your hands to remove as much water as possible. Chop and set aside.

For the pancake batter, put the flour, baking powder, egg, melted butter, salt, cumin and milk in a large mixing bowl and whisk until smooth. Add the scallions, chillies if using, and spinach and mix with a fork. Whisk the egg white to soft peaks and gently fold into the batter.

Pour a small amount of olive oil into a heavy frying pan and place on medium heat. For each pancake, ladle 2 tablespoons of batter into the pan and press down gently. These pancakes will be relatively small. Cook for about 2 minutes on each side, until golden-green. Transfer to a paper towel and keep warm. Continue making pancakes until the batter is used up.

To serve, pile up three warm pancakes per person and place a slice of lime butter on top to melt.


Sammi said...

Yum... its so true, our tastes change with the seasons, I'm already moving towards soups like lentil and carrot & ginger.

A Day That is Dessert said...

Oh yes - I love soups too!

Denise | Chez Danisse said...

These look fantastic and I love the lime butter accompaniment.

alice c said...

I am fortunate enough to be able to visit Ottolenghi in London and I can assure you that the restaurant is a photographers paradise.

Jessica said...

This sounds so yummy! My tastes have definitely changed as fall has begun to arrive ...all I can think of is soup!

KPiep said...

I must try these asap! Thanks!

Paige said...

Now those look like some interesting pancakes! I bet hubby and I would love 'em, but my kids are pretty stern about plain pancakes and waffles with butter and syrup...although I did spring some "Black Bean Brownies" on 'em the other week and they were a big hit! (Gotta sneak those extra nutrients in there somewhere!)

Francesca said...

I always have a savory breakfast, and my kids often do too. This sounds delicious, and I like the sausage lime butter:)

sandra said...

Oh yum! I'll have to check out that book! i love Jack Bishop's A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen. He cooks simple meals according to the seasons and the recipes are delicious there, too.

Heather said...

I so agree, our tastes do shift seasonally, and these pancakes so sound interesting. Thank you for sharing the book, and the recipe.

Valerie said...

savory US pancakes !!!
i had never seen these but defintely a "must-try" !
thanks for sharing

molly said...

Seriously, your children will eat pancakes with spinach? And scallions? You go, girl! (And yup, I love the book something awful.)