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Blog post written by Tudor Caradoc-Davies. The summer months in South Africa are all about lazy days. Lounging by the pool, baking at the beach, picnicking, a little mild foraging for mussels and other seafood if you manage to get … Continued
Blog post written by Tudor Caradoc-Davies.
The summer months in South Africa are all about lazy days. Lounging by the pool, baking at the beach, picnicking, a little mild foraging for mussels and other seafood if you manage to get down to the coast, followed by great meals and equally great afternoon snoozes.
Then, disaster strikes, January drags you back to work, by Feb you are in full swing. In March, you’re getting desperate and starting to wonder if you will ever get out of the 9-5 again. Just when you feel like throwing it all in and moving off to Greyton to fashion dream-weavers out of guinea fowl feathers, live in a wigwam and drink your own pee – it appears on the horizon.
Easter, with its weekends away, easter bunnies that lay eggs (very odd come to think of it) and the inherent chocolate overloads also means pancakes. Usually that means even more sweetness, but with this excellent recipe from the queen of lazy day indulgence, Phillippa Cheifitz, you can sink your teeth into savoury pancakes.
Makes about 12
For the batter: 8 farm eggs or 6 extra-large free-range eggs • ¼ teaspoon salt • 1–2 tablespoons sugar (optional) • 1½ cups cake flour, sifted 2 cups full-cream milk or buttermilk (or make a mix of ½ iced water and ½ milk) • 2 tablespoons melted butter or sunflower oil
For frying: unsalted butter
Blend or beat together all the batter ingredients until smooth. Allow to stand in the fridge for at least half an hour. Heat a knob of butter in a pan – nonstick ensures good results and anything from 20cm–23cm in diameter is a good size. When the butter is starting to brown, add a ladle of batter. Swirl around to cover the bottom of the pan, lifting if necessary to allow the excess batter to run underneath. Ordinarily you would flip them over once nicely brown to do the other side, but these pancakes call for a different technique. See method below:
About 8 thin pancakes, cooked on one side only
For the filling, mix together: 1 soft ball mozzarella, shredded • ½ cup crumbled ricotta • ¼ cup grated Parmesan • ½ teaspoon dried oregano or some shredded basil leaves
For the topping: about 1 cup home-made tomato sauce • a few tablespoons grated Parmesan
Place some cheese filling on the cooked side of each pancake and roll up. Arrange in an oiled baking dish and spoon the tomato sauce over. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan and bake for about 20 minutes at 190°C or until hot and golden.
250g fresh spinach or Swiss chard • 2 tablespoons thick cream • 125g Gruyère, grated • sea salt and milled black pepper • about 8 thin pancakes • extra grated Gruyère or Parmesan • butter
Wash the spinach well. Trim and shred. Steam until tender. Heat the spinach in a nonstick pan, stirring until all the moisture has evaporated. Stir in cream and cheese and check seasoning. Place a generous spoonful of filling in each pancake, then fold into quarters. Place on a well-buttered baking tray. Sprinkle all the pancakes with extra cheese and dot each one with butter. Bake at 200°C for 10–15 minutes or until hot and golden.
Phillippa’s book Lazy Days – Easy Summer Cooking is the ultimate in relaxed yet sumptuous and delightfully indulgent cooking. Get it at all leading bookstores.