Pancake day

Chia and banana pancakes from buckwheat and chickpea flours.

A few posts ago we mentioned that at some point we would get around to making pancakes. Well, the day has arrived and your patience will be rewarded! Hopefully, you will be as excited by these pancakes as our stomachs were 🙂

You are likely familiar with the classic preparation of pancakes, where eggs, milk, and white flour are used (though many variations exist). We took this pancake recipe and turned it on its head to make our own unique invention; ours of course had no eggs or milk, and are also without standard flour as one of our colleagues cannot eat gluten. The typical flour (normally made from wheat) was exchanged for a mix of buckwheat and chickpea flour, but any other non-gluten flour can be used such as corn, rice, or soy flours.

In traditional pancake batter, the eggs usually provide the necessary structure to the pancake to keep them from tearing and breaking when you move them. In our vegan version, polysaccharides from chia seeds have taken over this role, though you can also use flax. In either case, the consistency is best if the seeds are ground to powder, but you can also get away with using whole seeds.

Chia seeds (as the name implies) are the seeds of Salvia hepanica, a member of the Lamiaceae family which includes many spices and herbs such as mint, oregano, basil, rosemary, and many more. Its closest relative on this front, however, is sage (Salvia officinalis) as they fall in the same genus (Salvia), which is a smaller and more specific category than the family.

Chia is an incredibly interesting food, not only for its physical properties that create a thick gel when mixed with water but also for its nutritional value. For example, these seeds are incredibly good for our intestines as they act as a dietary fiber and thus benefit our health. Chia is also a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which are essential for the healthy functioning of our bodies. Since today we are talking about pancakes though, a future post will further detail the wonders of chia in all the detail it deserves! Stayed tuned for that!

Getting back to our pancakes, we also want to point out that some other plants can be used as binding agents. We have already mentioned flax seeds which, according to one of our colleagues, actually work much better than chia. Flax has fewer polysaccharides and thus provides a different consistency to the batter. A combination of banana and oil can also be used for this effect, though not quite as effectively. Still, if you’re in a pinch and that’s all you have at home, it will do the trick. We included a bit of banana for this reason, but also mainly for taste (though grated apple could be added instead for this purpose). We also added a bit of baking soda to make them light and fluffy.

Pancakes or crêpes?

Depending on where you live in the world, you may never have heard of crêpes even though you may have seen them and referred to them as pancakes! Crêpes (kr-eh-ps) is a word adopted into English from French and used to refer to a large and thin disk of batter that is cooked on a pan and then covered with a filling and rolled up. They can be sweet (adding syrup, yogurt, jam, etc.) or savory (with fillings such as cheese and herbs). In contrast, pancakes are smaller in diameter than crêpes, but much thicker. These cannot be rolled, and instead, you eat them with the condiments on top. These could also be savory if you wanted them to be, but we have personally only had the occasion to eat them in a sweet context. Pancakes are also referred to as “flapjacks” in the USA, though in the UK this term denotes something different but equally yummy (take a look here for that).

So all this being said, we technically made crêpes, not pancakes (although if we added some more flour to make our dough thicker we could have easily made pancakes from it). But since pancakes is a simpler word for most of us to read (and somehow more fun to read. Pancake!) we will use that. If you speak French and find “crêpe” just as simple to say as “pancake” then please forgive us. Maybe someday we will make some yummy French food to make it up to you 🙂


Recipe, preparation and price

 

Quantity(g or ml)

Price for 4 person (EUR)

Pancakes

Buckwheat flour

100

0,28

Chickpeas flour

70

0,50

Chia seeds

40

0,64

Vanilin sugar

10

0,19

Backing powder

2

0,03

Banana

100

0,27

Water

650

0,00

Sunflower oil

10

0,09

Together

 

2,00

 

In a large bowl, we mixed both our types of flour before adding our chia seeds, which we had previously ground up in a coffee grinder. If you are using flax instead of chia, the ground flaxseed will need to be mixed with water and allowed to sit for a bit until it becomes gooey before adding it in. We then added in the bananas and water, as well as baking powder. Vanilla and sugar were added to taste, though other flavors such as cinnamon and nutmeg can be used instead.

We mixed all this up with our trusty stick mixer, but you can also do it by hand. As for the water, we added enough to get the dough to just the right consistency. The exact amount of water you need will depend on exactly which ingredients you used, as well as the chia seeds, which can vary in how much water they absorb. We prepared the dough in the morning and let it sit for several hours to ensure that the flour was well soaked and that the chia had been bound up into the water entirely. To cook the pancakes, the procedure is just as for normal pancakes (large pan, medium heat, keep it well-oiled). The only difference here is that they will be a little bit thicker than usual since the chia doesn’t let the dough form such a thin layer, and they may be a bit more prone to tearing when flipping, so be careful.

From the quantity we describe here, we managed to make 10 pancakes and then added our favourite fillings: banana, jam, shredded coconut, etc. Since we each filled our pancakes differently, we did not account for the fillings in the nutritional calculations.

The price of our pancakes (without filling) for 4 people amounted to 2€, or 0.5€ per person. However, this was NOT a complete meal, just a snack or dessert. The most expensive components here were the chia seeds and the chickpea flour. This is because both of these items are imported and they are used relatively infrequently making their relative cost greater.


Nutritional value

 

With lunch consumedquantity

% From daly needs

Energy

254,585

kcal

12,7

Proteins

9

g

16,1

Total fatts

7,604

g

17,3

Carbohydrates

40,422

g

 

Starch

15,845

g

 

Sugar

8,101

g

 

Fibers

8,491

g

34

Calcium (Ca)

109,095

mg

10,9

Iron (Fe)

2,746

mg

27,5

Magnesium (Mg)

133,823

mg

33,5

Phosphorus (P)

265,745

mg

38

Potassium (K)

473,07

mg

23,7

Sodium (Na)

119,67

mg

21,8

Zinc (Zn)

1,788

mg

17,9

Copper (Cu)

0,417

mg

46,3

Fluoride (F)

116,255

µg

29,1

Manganese (Mn)

1,13

mg

49,1

Selenium (Se)

8,664

µg

17,3

Vitamin A

1,1

µg

0,1

Vitamin E

1,327

mg

8,8

Vitamin D

0

µg

0

Vitamin C

2,335

mg

2,3

Thiamin (B1)

0,259

mg

19,9

Riboflavin (B2)

0,102

mg

6,8

Niacin (B3)

2,895

mg

20

Pantothenic acid (B5)

0,3

mg

5

Vitamin B6

0,323

mg

21,6

Folic acid (B9)

99,875

µg

25

Vitamin B12

0

µg

0

Vitamin K

3,603

µg

5,1

 

 

This afternoon snack covered 12.7% of the daily caloric needs of an average person (again, without the filling). That’s less than half what we normally cover in our lunches here, but since it’s just a snack that’s ok. That being said, this snack managed to provide us with 16.1% of our daily protein requirements. Despite the absence of eggs and milk, our pancakes have a higher ratio of protein-calories than regular pancakes! Ours have about 9g of protein while traditional pancakes have 6g. These pancakes also covered all of our minerals, with 33% of our daily requirement for magnesium and 49% of our daily requirement for manganese being present. That being said, this snack was very low in vitamins. There was a considerable shortage of 8 vitamins. This deficit could easily be compensated by having a mixed salad with the next meal (except for vitamins B12 and D, of course).

Wishing you all a lovely and sunny week (maybe even with a pancake breakfast!).

The Hungry Pumpkin Team

PS: As always, feel free to get in touch with us if you have any questions about today’s recipe, its nutritional value, or if you have future lunch ideas for us 🙂 Write to us at hungry.pumpkin.blog@gmail.com

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