The Musette: vegan quinoa pancakes

My beloved was heading off on an insane four-day trip to Bangkok and I wanted to give him (and me) a breakfast treat before he left. I had a few frozen blueberries in the freezer which I turned into blueberry compote with the addition of the juice and zest of an organic lemon and two tablespoons of my home-made strawberry jam, though any red/black jam will do.

I also had a spot of quinoa flour lurking in the bottom of one of my storage jars which I toasted in the oven and then cooled before using in the recipe instead of the oat flour I typically use. I also added some coconut flour which I’ve found greatly adds to their texture making them ultra fluffy, but also moist and tender. Consequently they soak up the compote and maple syrup, but don’t fall apart when you cut into them.

Ingredients (enough for two hungry cyclists)

  • 50g (1/2 cup) almond flour
  • 2 tbsp arrowroot starch or cornflour
  • 2 tbsp coconut flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2  tsp sea salt
  • 1 1/4 cups plant-based milk, I used unsweetened almond
  • 2 chia or flax seed eggs (2 tbsp chia seeds or flaxseed meal plus 6 tbsp filtered water)
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil, I used grape-seed

Method

1. Preheat a non-stick griddle or flying pan over a medium heat.

2. Whisk together the chia seeds or flax meal with the water and set aside to gel.

3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients.

4. Whisk together the milk, oil and syrup then add the “eggs” whisking again to incorporate. Then pour wet into the dry ingredients until a smooth, thick batter forms.

5. Pour ¼ cup of batter onto the pan and flatten slightly. Cook the pancake until small bubbles begin to form around the edges, about 2 – 3 minutes. Flip and cook for another 1 – 2 minutes longer until the other side is golden brown. Repeat until no batter remains – typically makes six pancakes.

6. Serve warm with compote or fresh berries and pure maple syrup – enjoy!

The Musette: vegan scones

What better to enjoy with my recently made strawberry jam? Actually, it was my beloved’s idea. He said:

This jam would be even more delicious on scones.

Now, I cannot eat scones because they contain dairy in the form of butter and milk/cream. So I wondered whether I could create some non-dairy scones. Turns out you can and they’re incredibly light, soft and flaky!

Instead of plain (all-purpose) flour, I used white whole-wheat which gives the scones a lighter colour and a subtler nutty flavour. I also used raw cane sugar instead of granulated. Like the whole-wheat, this translates into a deeper flavour – in this case, caramely, molasses-y vibes. It also means a crunchier, crustier crust.

Ingredients (makes 6 scones, enough for 3 hungry cyclists)

  • 240g (2 cups) white whole-wheat flour
  • 2 tbsp  raw cane sugar, plus more to sprinkle on top
  • 3 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 375g (1 2/3 cups) very cold coconut or oat cream (non vegans can use double cream), plus more to brush on top

Method

1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas mark 6 (400°F). Line a half sheet pan with greaseproof (parchment) paper or a silicone mat.

 

2. Sift the flour and combine it with the sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl. Add half the non-dairy cream, stir a few times, then add the rest of the non-dairy cream and stir until a mostly-cohesive dough forms.

3. Finish bringing together with cold hands until there are no more noticeable dry spots, but don’t overwork the dough! Transfer it to a lightly floured work surface and use your hands to pat the dough into a square or rectangle approx. 3 cm (1 inch) high.

 

4. Divide into six pieces. Brush the tops with plenty of non-dairy cream, then sprinkle with lots of sugar (they should be completely covered).

5. Transfer the scones to the lined baking sheet, spacing them out evenly. Bake for about 23 minutes – rotating the tray halfway through – until well-risen, with browned bottoms and a light golden crust.

6. Scones are always best the day they’re baked – especially when still warm. However, any leftover – as if! – can be frozen to enjoy another day.

Sheree’s Handy Hints

1. While these scones were really light and fluffy, they did look a bit rough around the edges. The second batch I cut into squares and then, once baked, cut out scone circles which looked much more presentable.

The Musette: savoury bread and butter pudding