P is for Pancakes

It's pancake day here in the UK, so naturally I had to make my humble contribution to the many recipes currently flying around on social media. Not being able to decide on just one, youre in for a treat as I've got two yummy recipes for you to try  - one making the most out of the classic crepe and the other paying homage to the thicker fluffy American counterpart.

Crepes are normally my go to pancakes for pancake day and whilst I'm a big fan of keeping it simple with lemon and sugar, this year I've pushed the boat out with this stack of caramel and apple crepes. Layered up with some whipped cream, this takes pancake day to another level! I've included the recipe for the caramel below but you could always use a shop bought caramel sauce to save time or even throw in some sea salt for a salted caramel twist.

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These cloud like chocolate and banana pancakes are among some of my favourites. The thick buttermilk pancakes have been packed with mashed banana and chocolate chips before being assembled with lashings of chocolate sauce and whipped cream. Probably not something I'd go for first thing in the morning, but it'll certainly make a wonderful addition to any brunch menu or evening treat.

 

R E C I P E

Chocolate & Banana Buttermilk Pancakes

250g Plain Flour
2 tbsp Caster Sugar
40g Butter, melted
1 Egg
300ml Buttermilk
100ml Whole Milk
½ tsp Vanilla Extract
2 ½ tsp Baking Powder
½ tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
1 Ripe Banana, Mashed
70g Chocolate Chips

Chocolate Drip:
75g Dark Chocolate
50g Butter, softened

M E T H O D

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar and baking powder. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, milk, and vanilla. Pour in the melted butter and mashed banana and mix until combined.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and stir gently until there are no streaks of flour visible. Fold in the chocolate chips and leave the batter to stand for 5 minutes.
Heat a large frying over medium heat and brush with a little butter. Spoon two heaped tablespoons of batter into the pan and fry for 2-3 minutes before flipping over. And frying for another minute. Repeat until all the batter is finished.
Keep an eye on the heat to make sure the pan doesn’t get too hot.

Chocolate Drip

Melt the chocolate gently in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water, ensuring the bottom of the bowl isn’t touching the water. Remove from the heat
Stir in cubes of butter a little at a time ensuring the butter has melted before adding the next piece. Allow to cool completely before using.
Stack up the pancakes and decorate with slices of banana, chocolate chips, whipped cream and drizzle over the chocolate.


Caramel Apple Crepes

180g Plain Flour
1 tbsp Caster Sugar
350ml Milk
1 Large Egg
30g Butter, melted

2 Medium Apples, peeled and chopped
½ tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 tbsp Butter

Caramel
100g Caster Sugar
20g Butter
80ml Double Cream, room temperature

Whipped Cream, to serve

M E T H O D

To make the pancakes, mix together the sugar and flour and set aside
In a jug, whisk the egg, milk and vanilla until combined. Make a well in the flour an pour in the wet ingredients, whisking until there are no lumps. The batter should be quite thin.
Heat the pan over a moderate heat and brush the pan with a little butter. Ladle some batter into the center of the pan and swirl it around to create an even layer. Let the pancake cook for about 30 seconds before flipping over and cooking for a further 30 seconds.
Transfer to a plate whilst you make the rest.

Once all the pancakes are made, place them in a preheated oven to keep warm whilst you prepare the apples and caramel.

Melt the butter for the apples in a pan over a medium heat. Toss in the apples, cinnamon and vanilla and allow the apples to cook and brown for  2-4 minutes, stirring frequently. Set aside until ready to assemble

To make the caramel, heat the caster sugar in a stainless steel saucepan over medium heat, stirring continuously. Clumps will form, but continue stirring and it will eventually melt into a brown liquid. Immediately add in the butter- be careful as the sugar will splutter and bubble rapidly.

Whisk continually until the butter is fully melted and incorporated into the melted sugar.
Slowly drizzle in the cream whilst continuing to whisk. Let the caramel boil for a minute before removing from the heat.
Assemble the crepes by stacking them up with some whipped cream between some of the layers if you like. Drizzle over the caramel and add the apples and some more cream.

Brunch O'Clock

As a millennial, I'm naturally a big fan of brunch. I love it. It combines the best bits of breakfast and lunch and is a perfectly acceptable time to mix sweet and savoury - french toast, maple syrup and a side of thick cut bacon? Yes please.Brunch has also become one of those nouns that's now used as a verb - an indication of just how trendy it is; brunching really is an art form. Out of all the meals of the day, brunch comes out on top and like most other millennials, I'm always up for a lazy weekend catch up over a flat white and some creamy scrambled eggs, complete with the obligatory Instagram post #brunchingwiththegals

If I could brunch every day, trust me, I would. But these regular weekend trips add up and we really should be saving those pennies for something grown up - like, you know, a deposit for a house. So, I'm here to help you out a bit and will be running a little series of brunch posts over the next week or so, sharing some of my favourite brunch recipes for you to make at home as well as a couple of shout outs for my top brunch spots in London. All the recipes will be relatively unfussy and easy to scale up making it pretty handy if you've got a few friends round. So let's go!

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I absolutely adore eggs and will take them however which way they come, whether that's fried, scrambled, poached or baked. And so it's only natural that the first recipe I'm sharing are super yummy eggs. But not just any old eggs - in true brunch style these bad boys are baked up in the cutest little cast iron skillet, loaded with onions, tomato, peppers and smoky chorizo before being served with chunks of sourdough.

This is definitely a dish that feels indulgent but requires minimal effort and just tastes great. You could do this in any large oven safe frying pan if making for a group .Just stick it in the middle of the table and let everyone dig in.

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R E C I P E
serves 2

 2 tbsp Olive Oil
1 Small Onion
Half a green and red pepper
1 Clove Garlic
1/2 tsp Smoked Paprika
Sea Salt and Black Pepper
50g Chorizo, roughly chopped
Handful Cherry tomatoes, halved
2 Medium Eggs
Chopped Parsely

M E T H O D

Preheat oven to Gas Mark 6/200C
In a cast iron skillet or oven safe frying pan, fry your onions and peppers until softened
Add in the garlic and chopped chorizo. Fry for a few minutes before seasoning with salt, pepper and smoked paprika
Add in the tomatoes, remove from the heat and make two wells in the pan
Crack the eggs into the wells and bake in the oven for 6-10 minutes until the whites are set and the yolks are slightly runny Serve with some chunky bread