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Savory Pancakes

December 16, 2011 matkonation 2 Comments

By: Danya Weiner

I have a complicated relationship with oil. On one hand I try to stay away from oil-fried foods- I usually prefer oven-baked foods (eggplants, meatballs) over the fried version. On the other hand, I love schnitzel and on Hanukah it’s an 8-day battle with sufganuyot (the Israel version of a donut eaten on Hanukah).

When it comes to levivot (fried potato pancakes traditionally eaten on Hannukah), I usually try to stay away from them. For this holiday season, I decided to share with our readers an alternative version to the fried fritter. This idea came long before the first signs of the oncoming of the holiday season. The idea was born out of my desire for my children to eat vegetables and their love of pancakes. One night awhile back, I didn’t want to make (and they didn’t want to eat) another omelet for dinner (in Israel, dinners are the same as breakfast in a typical household). I threw together a basic pancake batter, sans sugar, and added frozen corn kernels and some cheese I had in the fridge and voila- next thing I know the kids were eating delicious corn pancakes. Within minutes, the stack of pancakes disappeared (with the help of my husband) and I immediately began to think of other combinations to make with this new method of mine, and not necessarily kid-friendly.

I tried many versions, and I sharing with you the final four that made the cut: Swiss chard with Suluguni cheese (Georgian cheese), corn and cilantro, roasted peppers, olives and feta and beets with goat cheese.

The beauty of this recipe is that it’s really only a half recipe- the base of the pancakes stays the same and just the fillings change. You can be creative and use any vegetable/cheese combination you like.

Some tips before getting started:

  • The ratio of batter to filling should be 1/3 batter to 2/3 filling- the vegetables are what make the pancake.
  • Use a non-stick pan, and butter the pan only before the first batch.
  • The best combination is when using a mild tasting vegetable with a strong tasting cheese or the opposite- they should complement each other and not overpower one another.
  • I like to serve the pancakes with a side of sour cream, guacamole or yogurt with mint and lemon.
  • If you have leftover pancakes you can keep them refrigerated and then warm them up in the toaster or oven on medium heat for about 10 minutes. (Don’t microwave).

Basic Savory Pancake Batter

Ingredients for 20 medium pancakes:

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup whole milk

1 egg, beaten

½ teaspoon salt

Preparation:

  1. Using a whisk, mix together all ingredients in a large bowl until batter is smooth.

Prepare with the following fillings:

Swiss Chard and Suluguni Cheese Pancakes

Suluguni cheese is a Georgian cheese which can be found here in Israel in the Carmel or Machne Yehuda markets. You can replace this cheese with feta, kashkaval or halumi.

Ingredients for 20 pancakes:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 garlic clove, minced

1 bunch Swiss chard, thoroughly washed and coarsely chopped

½ cup Sulunguni cheese, grated

1 savory pancake batter recipe (see above)

For cooking:

1 teaspoon butter

Preparation:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add the garlic and Swiss chard. Cook for about 3-4minutes, until softened. Remove from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the prepared Swiss chard and grated cheese to the prepared savory pancake batter and mix until combined.
  3. Heat butter in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add two tablespoons of the batter to the skillet and cook for about 2 minutes, and then flip pancake over and cook for an additional two minutes. Repeat with remaining batter.

These pancakes go great with goat milk yogurt seasoned with olive oil, mint and lemon juice.

Corn and Cilantro Pancakes

Ingredients for 20 pancakes:

2 cups corn kernels, fresh or frozen and defrosted

1 bunch cilantro leaves, chopped

½ cup hard yellow cheese, such as gouda, provolone or mozzarella, grated

1 savory pancake batter recipe (see above)

For cooking:

1 teaspoon butter

Preparation:

  1. Mix together the corn, cilantro and cheese until combined. Add to the prepared pancake batter and mix to combine.
  2. Heat butter in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add two tablespoons of the batter to the skillet and cook for about 2 minutes, and then flip pancake over and cook for an additional two minutes. Repeat with remaining batter.

These pancakes go great with homemade fresh guacamole.

Roasted Pepper, Olives and Feta Cheese Pancakes

Ingredients for 20 pancakes:

4 medium red bell peppers

½ cup Kalmata olives, pitted and chopped

¼ lbs. /100 grams feta cheese, grated

1 savory pancake batter recipe (see above)

For cooking:

1 teaspoon butter

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF/200ºC. Place peppers (whole) on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and roast until the skin of the peppers is completely charred (you will have to turn them over a few times while roasting).
  2. Remove peppers from oven and place immediately in a plastic bag. Close bag and allow to cool to room temperature. Once cooled, peel the skin off the peppers, remove and discard seeds and coarsely chop peppers.
  3. Mix together the chopped peppers, olives, feta cheese and pancake batter in a large bowl until combined.
  4. Heat butter in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add two tablespoons of the batter to the skillet and cook for about 2 minutes, and then flip pancake over and cook for an additional two minutes. Repeat with remaining batter.

These pancakes go great with homemade with sour cream.

Beet and Goat Cheese Pancakes

Ingredients for 20 pancakes:

2 large beets, peeled and finely grated

1 bunch fresh mint leaves, chopped

½ cup goat cheese, grated

1 savory pancake batter recipe (see above)

For cooking:

1 teaspoon butter

Preparation:

  1. Mix together the beets, mint and cheese until combined. Add to the prepared pancake batter and mix to combine.
  2. Heat butter in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add two tablespoons of the batter to the skillet and cook for about 2 minutes, and then flip pancake over and cook for an additional two minutes. Repeat with remaining batter.

These pancakes go great with sour cream or yogurt.


2 comments to “Savory Pancakes”

  1. Rahel says:

    Sounds great! I will try the pepper-ones. I sometimes make similar ones with corn or/ and carrots. I don’t think I will be able to replace the latkes although they are way too oily for my taste and I prefer the thick and big version from Switzerland (Roesti)…. thanks for the recipes!

  2. nail art says:

    I do love the manner in which you have framed this particular issue and it does offer us some fodder for consideration. Anyway, thank you for this outstanding point.

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