Comforting pancakes, fluffy and delicious, for a perfect Mediterranean brunch, from one of my favorite chefs, Yotam Ottolenghi
About this recipe
I find this recipe an ideal treat for a nice Sunday Brunch, or a light diner with someone you love, or simply a gourmet afternoon snack !
British Chef Ottolenghi says about this recipe "this brought a lot of compliments after I published it in 2008".
I tried it, and all I can say is it's a great recipe that all my guests for the Sunday brunch love...
I initially cooked those pancakes for friends who are veggie eaters, and all I can say is I became addicted to it ! This became a recipe that I cook a few times a year, a real simple treat every time
I cooked, and... I got hooked (we, French people, love play on words)
Yum yum yum ! Miam miam miam !
Source of the recipe
I found this great and easy recipe in the book "Plenty" by Yotam Ottolenghi
Yotam Ottolenghi is a British chef born in Jerusalem
I like his cuisine as it brings a distinctive mix of Middle Eastern flavors (Israeli, Turkish, Lebanese and Armenian) with a western twist. Sort of a European and middle-eastern fusion !
The book "plenty" is a bible for vegetarians. Veggie dishes can be delicious and the book proves it !
The recipe is on page 150
Modifications to the original recipe
I modified only a few things...
● I use 2 Egg Whites instead of only 1 : The result is a fluffier pancake
● I use 1 Garlic Clove instead of only 1/2
The Lime Butter
1. Place the Butter (½ Cup or 113 g) in a bowl. Let it soften at room temperature for 30 minutes or more
2. I recommend using organic Lime as we are going to use the zest
3. Wash the Lime
4. To grate the Lime Zest (1), my favorite zester tool is the "microplane"
5. Do not grate the fruit on the zester
6. Instead, grate the zester on the fruit, this will ensure you are not grating the white skin which is bitter
7. Grate the zest, and then squeeze the Lime Juice (1 ½ tablespoons)
8. Dice and add 1 tablespoon into the bowl
9. Crush and add the Garlic Clove (1)
10. Add the Chile Flakes (Crushed red pepper (¼ teaspoon) unless you don't like spicy and hot chiles !
11. Combine in a bowl: The Butter (½ Cup or 113 g), The Lime Zest (1), The Lime Juice (1 ½ tablespoons), The Salt (¼ teaspoon), The White Pepper (½ teaspoon), The Coriander leaves (cilantro) (1 tablespoon), The Garlic Clove (1), The Chile Flakes (Crushed red pepper (¼ teaspoon)
12. Mix all this together
13. Tip onto plastic wrap
14. Twist the ends of the wrap to seal
15. Hold the ends, and roll to tighten : This is what you should get
16. Place in the refrigerator
The Spinach Pancakes
17. Wilt the Spinach Leaves ( ½lbs or 227 g) with a small quantity of water in a pan on high heat
18. Drain the leaves
19. Squeeze hard on the leaves to remove as much water as possible (as you don't want your pancakes to turn soggy)
20. Even though Ottolenghi doesn't mention it, I transfer the leaves onto cold water (to preserve the color)
21. Roughly chop the Spinach Leaves with a knife
22. Melt the Butter (¼ Cup or 57 g)
23. In a mixing bowl, place: the Flour (⅔ Cup or 90 g), the Baking Powder (1 Tablespoon or 12 g), The Egg (1), the Butter (¼ Cup or 57 g), the Salt (½ teaspoon), the Cumin (½ teaspoon or 2 g), the Milk (⅔ Cup or 157 g)
24. Whisk together with a fork or with a wire whip
25. Dice the Green Onions ('Scallions') (6)
26. Ottolenghi recommends to use Green Chiles (2), which you can skip if you don't like hot spices
27. Open the Green Chiles and remove the seeds
29. Add into the bowl the Spinach Leaves ( ½lbs or 227 g), the Green Onions ('Scallions') (6) and the Green Chiles (2)
30. Gently mix
31. Whisk the Egg Whites (2) : you don't want to over mix it, stop beating at the soft peak stage or you won't be able to incorporate it well into the batter
32. Add the Egg Whites (2) into the bowl
33. Gently fold the Egg Whites (2) into the batter, using a hand whisk and then a rubber spatula
34. Do not whisk !!
35. You may use a frying pan or a griddle
36. Spray a splash of Olive Oil
39. Ladle the batter, press down
40. Shake the rings to form circles
41. Remove the rings right away and cook for about 2 minutes
42. Cook the other side for approximately 2 minutes
43. Set the pancakes aside
44. Slice the Lime Butter
45. Place a slice of lime butter on one of 3 pancakes
46. If the butter doesn't melt, heat the plate in the microwave
Serve right away
You may add some salad leaves