Yemeni Pancakes

Searching for jobs at the moment and noticed an old company that I worked for offering an Accountant role. I wonder if they’re still paying 10p an hour (ok slight exaggeration) but certainly being reminded of your old company gives you a happiness boost. Thinking about how the grass is greener now was mentioned as one of the strategies of being happy on the course ‘The Science of Wellbeing’ from Yale which is free on the Coursera website. If you have some free time, I really recommend it. Speaking of things that make me happy, these Yemeni pancakes were a revelation. Excluding the recipes containing ants and larvae in my complete Thai cookbook, it’s rare to come across a unique recipe to all my cookbooks (from Jamie Oliver ‘Veg’). A yeasted dough is made then fried as a pancake, eggs are cracked over the top, then the pancake is folded over. I’m not sure how authentic the eggs part is – Jamie has named the recipe ‘Yemeni-style’ pancakes but this could just be after the chorizo in paella debacle (which I’m completely on his side about). On the side is served aubergine dip and a salsa.

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 300g strong bread flour
  • 7g fast active yeast
  • 2 aubergines
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 lemons
  • 4 tbsp plain yoghurt
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 4 sprigs coriander
  • 30g parsley
  • 2 green chillis
  • oil
  • 4 ripe tomatoes
  • 8 eggs ( I doubled the eggs as I was hungry after the gym)

Method

1.) Measure out 500ml of tepid water i.e. doesn’t feel hot or cold and add the yeast. Leave to sit for 10 minutes

2.) Add the flour, whisk and set aside for another 20 minutes

3.) While this is going, heat the aubergines in turn directly over a flame, blackening the skin all over, leave to be cool enough to handle

4.) Peel and finely chop the garlic, chop the lemons in half and remove the seeds, dice up the chillis, finely chop the parsley and coriander.

5.) Chop up the tomatoes and place in a bowl, add in a tbsp olive oil, squeeze in the juice of 1 of the lemons. Season with salt and pepper.

6.) Peel the skin from the aubergine, place onto a plate, squeeze over some lemon juice, sprinkle with salt and coriander. Spoon over the yoghurt and tahini.

7.) Now, time to make the pancakes. heat some oil in a frying pan and add a ladle of batter, tilt the pan so it’s covered. Once the edges start to come away from the pan, crack two eggs into the centre then break up with a fork to spread over the surface of the pancake. Sprinkle with some parsley. Fold over the pancake. Flip over until each side is golden. Repeat with the rest of the mixture.

8.) Serve with the salsa and aubergine dip.

Broad bean stuffed pancakes

Another recipe that caught my eye in the Cicchetti cookbook was this one for stuffed pancakes. It’s probably not so much a normal weeknight dinner meal but being on holiday this week, I’ve been a bit more flexible. This would be a good one to make if you have guests as you can make them the day before. The recipe suggests to use cocktail sticks to hold the wheels in place but I didn’t personally feel the need.

Ingredients

  • 1 tin broad beans (250g drained)
  • 60g cream cheese
  • 1 tbsp grated parmesan
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 5g chives
  • salt and pepper
  • butter
  • 8 slices quorn ham
  • 3 sprigs basil

Method

1.) Make the pancake batter by beating the eggs in a bowl, whisk in the milk and flour. Chop up the chives and mix in the batter.

2.) Melt some butter in a small frying pan, add 1/4 of the pancake mixture at a time and make 4 pancakes. Set aside on a plate to cool.

3.) In a food processor, add the drained broad beans, the cream cheese and the parmesan. Blend until a smooth paste.

4.) One at a time, move a pancake to another plate, lay 2 slices of quorn and dollop on 1/4 of the broad bean mixture in the middle. Spread out the broad bean paste all around the pancake.

5.) Roll up the pancakes one by one then cut into slices. At this point, seal with the cocktail sticks if wanted.

6.) Chill until cool, then rip up the basil and sprinkle over the top.