Saturday, 9 March 2019

Potato, chickpea and cauliflower pancakes

Shrove Tuesday and sweet pancakes are intertwined in my memory.  No wonder when it heralded 40 dessert free days of Lent in my childhood.  But we are more ad hoc about desserts in our household so I had a hankering for a savoury stuffed pancake when Shrove Tuesday rolled around last week.

I give some credit to my worms for inspiring the recipe.  My worms in my work farm are unsettled lately so I wanted to give them lots of scraps.  The whole cauliflowers in the supermarket have lots of leaves around them that I can feed the worms.  In fact when a few leaves fell off at the checkout and the check out woman put them aside I asked her to put them in my bag.  She checked I really wanted them and then was happy to do this.  Probably relieved at one less thing to do, though maybe also too aware of what the supermarket does with food scraps.

I put together the filling during the day.  Roasting cauliflower, frying onion and boiling potatoes are easy tasks to be done around chatting to my mum and pruning roses and sorting out forms for school.  Then I mixed it all together before picking up Sylvia from school.  After taking her to gymnastics, I just needed to fry up some pancakes.

I haven't made these thin unleavened pancakes for some time.  We usually have fat fluffy ones for breakfast and they are often egg free.  I still hold my childhood sense of wonder at the amazing thick fluffy Pancake Parlour pancakes, even though I don't think my mum's pancakes were really thin.  But every now and I again I fancy some thin British style pancakes that can wrap around a filling. 

In fact, now that I have made a few flat breads such as Tortillas, yoghurt flatbreads and Staffordshire oatcakes, I find these pancakes more like a flatbread than a cake.  However these pancakes don't have bubbles - no big bubble like a flatbread and no tiny bubbles like baking powder pancakes.

The pancakes seemed to take forever when everyone was hungry.  The first one I did, I was overenthusiastic about swirling it around the pan and when I tipped the pan up too high, the uncooked pancake peeled off the pan and rolled up into a soggy roll of batter.  I was more careful after that.

Sylvia did not like the look of the stew we had in the pancakes so she had a special cheesy mashed potato filling.  By the time she had hers she was so hungry she had to take a bite before I took a photo.  Fair enough after a day of school and 90 minutes of gymnastics.

We kept our pancakes vegan with some hummus and baby spinach to complete the filling.  It would have worked just as well in a tortilla or a flatbread wrap but it was just right to wrap everything around a pancake on Shrove Tuesday.

These pancakes were pretty filling but we also had chocolate pancakes for dessert at Sylvia's insistence.  You can see a photo of her pancake here.  I did not take photos of half eaten pancakes and stacks of uneaten pancakes.  We were so full from our main course.  And I had a lot of stew to last the rest of the week because we made far more stew than pancakes.

I am sending these pancakes to Allotment to Kitchen and Veg Hog for Eat Your Greens.

More savoury pancake recipes on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
Aquafaba crepes with haggis (v)
Corn pancakes and salsa
Pancakes filled with potato and lentils
Spinach pancakes  (gf, v)
Pea pancakes with sun-dried tomato pesto

Potato, chickpea and cauliflower pancakes
Adapted from Sarah Brown via Green Gourmet Giraffe
Makes about 7-8
  • 1 egg
  • 300ml milk
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 cup wholemeal flour
  • Butter, margarine or oil, for frying

Potato, Chickpea and Cauliflower Filling:
Serves 4-6
  • 1 large cauliflower
  • 4 medium potatoes
  • 1 brown onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • dried herbs 
  • 1-2 cups chopped tomatoes
  • 400g tin of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • olive oil and seasoning

To serve:
  • Hummus
  • Baby spinach

To make filling:

Break cauliflower into florets and roast about 30 minutes at 220 C or until it is soft when a knife goes through it.  Once cauli is cooked chop the florets.  Dice potatoes and simmer in salted water for about 10 minutes or until just cooked.  Fry onion in about 2 tsp of olive oil (or a generous drizzle) for 20-30 minutes or until soft and golden brown.  Add garlic and herb mix and stir for about a minute.  Add tomato, chickpeas, potato and cauliflower.  Cook about 5 minutes or until tomato is starting to wilt.  Check and adjust seasoning.

To make pancakes:

Heat a non-stick frypan over medium head and lightly oil the frypan either with a little oil and some kitchen towel to wipe it over the frypan or using butter or margarine. Pour about 1/4 cup of mixture, or a little more, into the frypan and swirl around a little to cover as much of pan as possible. Fry the pancakes for a couple of minutes (a minute for the batter to dry out slightly and look cooked and another minute for the batter to fry golden brown) Flip and check the underside is golden brown.  Cook for about 1-2 minutes on the other side until light brown spots on the other side. (NB these are thin pancakes and don't bubble up when ready to flip unlike the thicker ones.) Keep pancakes in a stack on a plate covered with a clean teatowel until you are ready to assemble with stuffing.

To serve:

Lay a pancake on the plate.  Spread a spoonful of hummus on the pancake.  Scatter 2-3 spoonfuls of filling along middle of the pancake.  Top with some baby spinach leaves.  Roll up and eat.

NOTES: The stew is vegan.  If you want a vegan pancake, you could use these Aquafaba crepes.  And I made far more stew than pancakes so you could easily make more pancakes.  Or if you preferred a baked pancake, you could wrap these around the filling and bake with some tomato sauce, bread crumbs and some cheese (vegan or dairy as you prefer) and bake at 220 C for about 15 minutes.

On the stereo:
Dua Lipa - self titled album


  1. These look really good! They're more crepes to me (which I actually prefer to pancakes).

    1. Thanks Lorraine - that's funny you say that as I had written that the aquafaba crepes could be a vegan substitute and was thinking that the crepes are more like pancakes - I always think crepes are really thin but then I have so little experience of this sort of pancake that I don't know - but in the recipe book they were pancakes - and I think it is a British sort of recipe.

  2. Yum! What lovely hearty looking pancakes. I'd like to try these.

  3. What a lovely fish for Lent and also for Friday☺ looks yun☺

  4. I am liking the look of these, esp as someone who did not join in with Shrove Tuesday or pancake making. And I agree with Lorraine, they do look more like crepes having had a savoury version when I lived in Glasgow a few times and it was yummy. I am very much liking the filling too. Thanks for joining in with #eatyourgreens, by the way you could probably join in with MLLA too and guess what I am hosting!

  5. Savoury pancakes are the best, but I guess I always prefer savoury over sweet. I haven't made any pancakes for a long time, but now after seeing this, I crave for something similar.


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