Chestnut flour chocolate pancakes

We are surprised it has taken us this long to make a chocolate based pancake.   Having made these a few days ago, we are certain to make it again and potentially serve it as a dessert pancake with a classic Chantilly cream or vanilla ice cream.

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What do I need to make it?

 

  • 1 cup chestnut flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 large egg
  • Zest of an orange
  • 1 tsp orange blossom water
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 tbsp coco powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp muscavado sugar
  • 50 gms chocolate chips
  • Pinch of salt
  • Butter to cook

 

How many will I make?

Around 6 depending on size

How do I make it?

Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl to make a semi thick batter.   Heat a pan with some butter and spoon in a ladle of batter- cook on both sides and enjoy hot on it’s own or with a sprinkling of icing sugar.

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Samo semolina upma

Samo is a type of wild grass originating from tropical Asia.  In India seeds of this grass are consumed during festival fasting days. In Gujarati it is also called  “Moriyo”, in Marathi it is called ‘bhagar’ or “Vari cha Tandul” and the English equivalent is “sawa millet”.   We bought some samo semolina at an Asian grocer a few days back and made a gluten free upma using it.   Texture wise it it very close to wheat semolina upma and taste is not too dissimilar either.   We think this seed could be a very good gluten free substitute for semolina based dishes.

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What do I need to make it?

 

  • 1 cup of Samo semolina – dry roasted for five minutes
  • 1 cup of mixed corn and green peas (if frozen – microwave before use or par boil if fresh)
  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 1 inch piece of ginger finely chopped
  • 3-4 green chillies slit
  • 1 preserved lime finely chopped
  • 1 tsp urad dahl
  • 1 tsp channa dahl
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • Pinch of asafoetida
  • 3 tbsp ghee
  • Handful curry leaves
  • Handful fresh mint and coriander chopped
  • Salt  to taste

 

How much will I make?

Serves 2

How do I make it?

Heat ghee in a wok before adding mustard seeds.  Once they start spluttering, add the urad and channa dahl and fry till they start turning golden brown.   Add the ginger, green chillies, curry leaves and asafoetida – stir for 30 seconds before adding the onions.   Cook on medium heat till the onions begin to change colour.   Add the vegetables, preserved lemon, chopped herbs and season to taste.   Pour in 2 cups of hot water from the kettle and bring to a boil.    Then add the samo semolina and keep stirring to ensure it doesn’t stick to the sides.   Continue cooking for 10 minutes or till all the water is absorbed.   Serve hot.

Stuffed portabello mushrooms

We normally cook portabello mushrooms on the barbecue in the summer as a vegetarian alternative.   We love mushrooms and could not pass up the offer on some large portabello mushrooms on a recent shopping trip.   We also had some gluten free bread in the fridge and used the crusty end pieces to make a tasty bread crumb stuffing.   We can’t wait for the summer to try this dish on the barbecue.

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What do I need to make it?

 

  • 3 large portabello mushrooms (skin peeled)
  • 2 slices of bread
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 small onion
  • Handful of fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste

 

How much will I make?

3 mushrooms

How do I make it?

Roughly chop the garlic, onion and parsley and place in a mixer with the crusty bread slices.    Blend to a coarse mixture and season with salt and pepper.   Place a couple of heaped tablespoons of the stuffing on top of the mushrooms, drizzle a little olive oil and bake in a pre-heated oven at 180 degrees for 20 minutes or till done.  Enjoy hot.

Moroccan flavoured corn cous cous upma

With the kids on half term break a couple of weeks back we have not managed to post any recipes.   The weather also appears to have turned for the better after a couple of months of incessant rain – thus allowing us to begin cleaning our backyard and prepare it for some vegetables and herbs.   We posted a recipe for a gluten free alternative to semolina upma using corn cous cous – we made it again and this time decided to add a teaspoon of Ras al-Hanout powder, a teaspoon of harissa paste and a preserved lemon which was coarsely chopped (added after the onions were sauteed and cooked for a couple of minutes to ensure the raw smell of the spice mix disappears).   The flavours worked beautifully and the addition of the preserved lemons added a new dimension to the upma.   We are now inspired to experiment with other ethnic flavours to make our upma more interesting.

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Corn cous cous upma

Corn cous cous upma

On one of our past trips to ASDA we came across some cous cous made from maize semolina which we have been meaning to experiment with.  Tonight we made an upma (generally made with wheat semolina) with it which tasted remarkably like normal upma but without any of the gluten.   It is safe to say based on tonight’s experiment that this ingredient is definitely going to be a part of our cupboard essentials for quick meals in the future.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 1 cup corn cous cous – roast over medium heat for 5 minutes
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 4 green chillies slit
  • 1 inch piece of ginger finely chopped
  • Handful fresh curry leaves
  • 1 cup of frozen corn and peas microwaved for 3 minutes
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp split urad dahl
  • 1 tsp channa dahl
  • 3 tbsp ghee or oil
  • Salt to taste

How much will I make?

Serves 2

How do I make it?

Heat a wok on medium heat with some ghee in it and saute the mustard seeds, urad and channa dahl till the mustard seeds start to splutter.   Then add the ginger, curry leaves and green chillies.   Saute for 30 seconds before adding the chopped onions.    Sprinkle a bit of salt to taste and cook the onions till they go translucent.    Add the microwaved corn and peas to the wok with 300 ml of boiling water.   Allow the dish to come to a boil before pouring in the cous cous.    Give the dish a good mixe,  place a lid over the wok and switch off the heat.  Wait for 5 minutes for the cous cous to absorb the water.    Once done fork through the dish to fluff up the cous cous and enjoy hot.

Egg curry with rice vermicelli noodles

Having just seen an amazing laksa presented on Masterchef Australia  ‘The Professionals’ it inspired us to pull together an egg curry for a dinner party last night and serve it on a bed of rice vermicelli noodles with some garnish.   Unlike the laksa presented which had 40 different ingredients, the egg curry we made had a lot fewer ingredients and is relatively straightforward to make – our guests enjoyed the extra effort taken in presentation.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 8 boiled eggs
  • 2 medium potatoes peeled cubed and par boiled
  • 6-8 closed cup mushrooms quartered
  • 2 small plum tomatoes pureed
  • 400 ml coconut milk
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 4 green chillies pierced
  • Handful fresh curry leaves
  • Handful fresh coriander chopped for garnish
  • 3 tbsp coconut oil
  • Salt to taste

Paste ingredients

    • 1 large onion
    • 5 cloves of garlic
    • 1 large piece of ginger peeled
    • Handful fresh coriander
    • 5 cardamom pods
    • 5 cloves
    • 1 small stick of cinnamon
    • 1 tsp black peppercorns

Garnish

    • 3 tbsp desiccated coconut dry roasted
    • 1 small onion sliced and shallow fried in coconut oil till brown
    • A few coriander leaves chopped

How much will I make?

Serves 4

How do I make it?

Heat a large pan with the coconut oil and then add the curry leaves and whole green chillies.  Stir for 30 seconds before adding the paste – fry off  for five minutes till the moisture evaporates and it starts to brown.  Then add the turmeric, red chilli and coriander powder and stir for 30 seconds.   Add the pureed tomatoes and cook over medium heat till the oil leaves the masala.   Finally add the mushrooms, par boiled potatoes and the coconut milk and simmer over low heat till the potatoes are cooked through.   Add half a cup of water if the gravy appears too thick.   Adjust the seasoning, add the boiled eggs and garnish with fresh chopped coriander.   Serve on a bed of rice vermicelli noodles, with a sprinkling of roasted desiccated coconut,  fried onions and a few coriander leaves.

Thai flavoured savoury chestnut flour pancakes

Once you start experimenting with different flavours in pancake batter there’s no turning back.   We had some savoury pancakes for a lazy weekend breakfast and tried something different with some Thai 7 spice mix and some fresh herbs.   The pancakes tasted great on their own and with some sweet chilli sauce.

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What do I need to make it?

  • 1 cup chestnut flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp baking powders
  • 1 1/2 tsp Thai 7 spice powder (we found this under the Schwartz brand)
  • 1 clove of garlic minced
  • 1 Thai red chillie chopped
  • 2 sprigs of spring onion chopped
  • Handful fresh coriander and basil chopped
  • Salt to taste

How many will I make?

6-8 depending on size

How do I make it?

Place the chestnut flour, baking powder, milk and egg in a mixing bowl.  Whisk the ingredient till you get a medium consistency batter.  Add the remaining ingredients and give it a good stir.   Heat a frying pan and use a knob of butter to ensure pancake doesn’t stick to the pan.   Pour in a ladle of batter and cook on both sides till done.   Serve on it own or with sweet chilli sauce.