Those with a wheat or gluten intolerance don't have to miss out on the joy of pancakes, as Victoria shares her recipe for mouthwatering banana pancakes. Enjoy for breakfast, brunch or a delightful dessert.
I’ve always loved the ritual of an evening spent flipping batter on Pancake Day. When I was growing up, it was always my Dad who took over the frying pan duties (with much greater success than his days behind the barbecue) and, at our house, there were always enough pancakes to feed our family of 6 six times over. Lucky really, as we always managed to collect extras at mealtimes, when, as if on cue, all the boyfriends, best friends and hungry friends would all knock on the door just in time for supper.
My Mum used to try to enforce the rule that we had to have “a proper dinner” first, but in the end she admitted defeat and we were allowed pancakes and more pancakes without a floret of broccoli in sight. After several attempts to make new Blue Peter-inspired fillings, we always went back to the simplicity of lemon juice and sugar - that was just what my three sisters and I liked best. Except when the older ones were on a diet and tried Candarel instead. Don’t try it at home, kids. It bubbles up and tastes like Marks & Spencer fizzy fish – but not in a good way. You have been warned. As we grow up, tastes move on and, although I wouldn’t dream of turning my nose up at a lemon and sugar pancake, my mind has opened up to the possibilities of other toppings too.
My gluten-dodging boyfriend and I can’t get enough of savoury gram flour pancakes. They’re delicious with bacon and grilled tomatoes or ratatouille and make an excellent alternative to pasta for roll-your-own “cannelloni” – proof if ever it were needed that GF doesn’t have to be dull. But sometimes, just sometimes, only sweet will do.
My wheat-free little sister always asks me to make her banana pancakes with blueberry syrup when she comes to stay, which make for a truly indulgent and satisfying start to the day. My boyfriend prefers his with maple syrup and bacon, while I like Greek yoghurt and fresh fruit on mine. This Pancake Day, I’m planning to eat pancakes in different guises at every meal. They are so versatile, that sticking solely to the Jif lemon would be a flipping shame.
Gluten Free Banana Pancakes
(serves 4 - 6)
250g rice flour
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
2 tsp baking powder
A pinch of salt
2 tbsp caster sugar (or I used vanilla sugar as I had some knocking around)
2 large eggs, beaten
30g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
300ml whole milk
1 overripe banana, mashed (you can leave this out if you prefer)
A generous splash of vanilla extract
Simply whisk all the ingredients together until you have a fairly thick but pourable batter. Heat a frying pan and melt a little butter and oil before pouring out about 2 tablespoons' worth of batter for each pancake. Wait for the top to bubble slightly, before flipping over and browning on the other side. Serve with maple syrup or however you like to eat yours.
Happy Pancake Day!
What are your favourite toppings or fillings for pancakes? Do you prefer to add ingredients to the pancake mix itself, or serve your favourites on the side or rolled up in the pancake? Let us know here or over on Great British Chefs Facebook page.