Pancake Day is around the corner and this year I thought I'd get into the spirit of things. This is my second Shrove Tuesday since moving to Ireland but last year it came and went without me really taking any note of it. To be honest, I'd never heard of it before.
Last year, a couple of weeks before Pancake Day, I noticed shelves filled with instant pancake mixes, lemons, syrup, honey, whipped cream, basically anything pancake related. I'm not sure who I asked or where I found out it was all about Pancake Day, but by then it was over and I didn't really pay any attention to it.
This year, however, when the shelves started filling up with the same pancake goodies, I thought I'd find out a little more about it. After all, who wouldn't want to know more about a day earmarked for eating pancakes smothered in maple syrup, cinnamon and sugar, whipped cream, strawberries, chocolate.... You get my point ;)
Basically, the simplified version of it is: getting all you can eat of all the things you shouldn't before Lent starts. Enough said. I say bring on Pancake Day!
Something else I don't recall having in South Africa is banoffee pie. When Andrew and I were still doing the long distance thing, I'd fly up to Ireland to visit him, and when we went out for a meal there was normally banoffee pie on the dessert menu. My first encounter with it. A very simple dessert, simply a sweet crust, caramel, fresh banana slices and whipped cream.
This decadent dessert came to mind when I was thinking of fillings for pancakes, it was the perfect partnership, not just 'cause I imagined it would taste great, but because I associate Pancake Day and banoffee to me being in Ireland.
Pancakes, or crepes, are quite popular with us Saffers, so I thought I'd share a pancake recipe (or pannekoek, in Afrikaans) given to me by a South African friend before I left SA, so if this recipe looks a little different to the usual crepe recipe, you can blame it on the eclectic way South African recipes come about :)
Speaking of South African recipes, I was thrilled when Lauren of Celiac Teen asked me and other bloggers to submit a favourite recipe that reminds us of home. She then did an amazing thing and put this collection of recipes together in a recipe eBook, A Hand for Haiti, to raise funds for Haiti, so please visit her site to find out more about this great initiative.
And as for banoffee pancakes, they are as fantastic as I imagined!
2 cups All Purpose Flour
1/2 cup Sunflower or Canola Oil
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp White Spirit, Cider or Wine Vinegar
1/2 tsp Salt
Oil, Butter or Margarine for Frying
5-6 Bananas, sliced
200ml Caramel or Dulce de Leche
250ml Whipping Cream
2 tsp Caster Sugar
1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract or Seeds from 1 Vanilla Bean
- Beat eggs
- Add oil, half the water and vinegar, mix together
- Add dry ingredients and mix thoroughly making sure there are no lumps
- Tip: You can use a wooden spoon, whisk or electric beater
- While mixing, slowly pour in the remaining water
- Tip: Depending on the climate, the amount of water you need may vary, so add until the consistency is somewhere between double and single cream
- With a pan over medium high heat, pour a couple drops of oil or a small dab of butter or margarine into the pan
- Depending on the size of your pan, pour about 1/4 cup of batter into the pan
- Move the pan around so that the batter spreads evenly
- Cook until the pancake is slightly moist on top
- Using a spatula, flip the pancake over and cook for 15-30secs
- Transfer the cooked pancake to a plate
- Repeat, oiling or adding more butter to the pan every couple of pancakes
- Beat cream with caster sugar and vanilla until lightly whipped
- Fill pancakes with sliced banana, a teaspoon or two of caramel and whipped cream
- Roll or fold pancakes to serve
This recipe makes about 12 dinner plate sized pancakes
You can serve these in different ways:
- Fill pancakes with banana then fold or roll closed and drizzle Dulce de Leche over the top and finish off with a dollop of whipped cream
- As I did above, fill with banana and caramel, roll or fold closed then finish off with whipped cream sprinkled with cinnamon
- Fill with banana, caramel and whipped cream, roll or fold closed
- If folding, put fillings over quarter sections of the pancake (it's very rich so you don't need any more than that), then fold in half, then again
For a more common crepe recipe, visit About.com
If you'd like to make your own Dulce de Leche, there's an easy how-to on David Lebovitz's site