Friday, August 12, 2011
These pancakes look beautiful and delicious in spite of my bad pancake photography, don't you think? I know you may not believe me, but the pancake you see above contains absolutely no grain flour. Yet somehow, it was incredibly tender and moist, substantial and easy to make.
The key ingredients are unsweetened shredded coconut and potato starch. Coconut flour (in this case, shredded coconut blitzed in the food processor) is often used in gluten free baked goods, giving them body and lovely flavor. Potato starch is another magic ingredient, which is most often used as a thickener for pies and soups or gravies. It adds tenderness to vegan baked goods.
These fun, change-of-pace pancakes are definitely grain-free and I think they're gluten-free too (I'm not an expert on that, so I don't want to make a mistake!). I had half a bag of coconut and a lot of potato starch on hand from a recipe development project, and I thought it would be interesting to use them in my favorite protein pancake recipe. The version I usually make calls for oats. This version is equally good (possibly better), and so different. Great texture and flavor (you'll taste lightly sweet coconut, not so much banana); filling, but not heavy. They make me want to experiment with alternative ingredients more often.
Grain-Free Coconut Protein Pancakes
These are based on a recipe I adapted from askgeorgie.com. I also got some pancake inspiration and learned a bit more about coconut flour here and here.
Serves 2 generously
3/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (45 g)
2 Tbs potato starch
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup liquid egg whites
1/2 cup cottage cheese
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
2 packets Splenda or 1 Tbs sugar
1 medium to large banana
Chopped toasted walnuts
Add coconut to food processor and run until coconut is very finely shredded. Scrape around edges of bowl to loosen any coconut. Add potato starch and baking powder; pulse to combine.
In a liquid measuring cup, combine egg whites, cottage cheese, vanilla, cinnamon, salt and Splenda. Add to coconut mixture, along with banana. Process until combined. Transfer to a liquid measuring cup or medium bowl for easier pouring.
Heat a nonstick skillet to medium and coat with cooking spray. Pour on batter, making a 4 to 6-inch pancake, and sprinkle with walnuts (start with smaller pancakes until you get the hang of flipping them; batter will more liquidy than standard pancakes, and takes slightly longer to cook). Cook until bubbles form all over surface and bottom is golden brown. Flip gently and continue cooking until opposite side is golden brown. Serve with maple syrup.