Winter's lull has come and all I can think about is the smell of my parents rose garden, the feeling of salt water drying on my sun kissed skin, and those long evening car rides where I close my eyes and reach my arm out the open window scoping and caressing the summer air through my fingertips. These days I find myself lingering over the overpriced /imported berries at the grocery store, humming and hawing over the ridiculousness of purchasing them. I'll even make a point of crossing the street, going out of my way, to read the window display deals at the local flight centre (I know, I know, it's painfully old fashioned). But since we can't run away this year, I'm doing the next best thing and making a point of bringing sunshine and vigour to our everyday meals. These colder months have us craving plenty of spicy curries, warming Mexican inspired dishes, ginger, turmeric, and of course lots of sunny golden citrus.
Inspired by our trip to Marrakech last year, I've gotten into the habit of serving sliced fresh oranges with a light dusting of comforting cinnamon. My newfound love of this dish is in grave contrast to the distress I felt the first time I was given it as dessert. The look on my face was probably that of utter disappointment, because I clearly remember thinking as I looked down at my plate "hey, where’s the cake?". But nevertheless, I was wrong and Moroccans had it right. And sliced oranges with cinnamon is the simplest yet most amazing combination, and a killer dessert.
In anticipation of the upcoming Pancake Tuesday, I combined Moroccan style oranges with a favourite healthy pancake/crepe recipe to make for a hippie-dippy crepe suzette style dish. These pancakes are not like the typical fluffy North American version, but more reminiscent of a British pancake/crepe, or even a little like injera (but without the sour notes). They are dense and hearty and much like the Unbelievable Bread, they are made entirely out of soaked grains, making for a gluten free and entirely whole grain pancake - what’s not to love!?
While this recipe does call for a bit of planning ahead, it's incredibly simple to make and the batter will last covered in the refrigerator for a couple days. I opted for a mainly millet-based version here (I think I've made my love for millet known before), but I've also seen ones that use whole oats, straight quinoa, or all buckwheat. The only suggestion I have is maybe staying away from rice as many forums say it makes for a crunchy cake. And we don't want that now.
Whole Grain Pancakes
Adapted from here (ignore the blogs name, I was just in it for the pancakes)
Print Recipe Here
½ Cup Millet
¼ Cup Quinoa
¼ Cup Buckwheat
Chia Seeds, 3 tablespoon Water
½ teaspoon Baking Powder
A Pinch Sea Salt
Moroccan Oranges (Recipe Below)
Seeds or Nuts of Choice (Almonds, Pistachios, Macadamia)
1. The night before, soak the the millet, quinoa, and buckwheat in enough water to cover.
2. Next morning begin by making a chia egg with the 1 tablespoon Chia and 3 tablespoon water. Stir well to combine and let sit for ten minutes or until the water is absorbed. Next, drain the grains and combine them with the chia egg, 1 Cup fresh water, baking powder, and salt in a Vitamix or high speed blender. Puree until the mixture is totally smooth, it will look some what like homemade almond milk.
3. Heat a heavy frying pan to medium heat and add a splash of oil. Pour ¼ of batter into the hot pan, and using a spoon, spread to to a thin even layer (mind was about 15 cm or 6 inch). Once bubbles have appeared on the surface of the pancake, flip and cook the other side until golden. Repeat with remaining batter. Extra batter can be stored in the fridge for a couple days.
4. Serve pancakes along with Moroccan Oranges, yogurt of choice, and a pinch extra cinnamon.
2 tablespoon Maple Syrup
1 Stick Cinnamon
2 Pods Cardamom
1. Begin by slicing the peel off of four of the oranges, and cutting them into rounds (be sure to remove the seeds).
2. Juice the remaining orange and combine it with the maple syrup and spices in a little pot. Bring the mixture to a simmer, then let steep covered for about 15 minutes.
3. Pour sauce over the oranges and serve right away. Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator and make a great topping to chia pudding or yogurt.