Brunch: Tiramisu Pancakes and Kale and Egg Scramble

Weeks ago, I got an email from VegNews containing a recipe for Vegan Tiramisu Pancakes.  I immediately forwarded the email to Lindsey and a few girlfriends, and started planning when I could justify making such a decadent breakfast.  I ended up scheduling two brunches, since, unsurprisingly, a lot of my friends were intrigued.  The first of the two was last weekend.  I can’t wait for round 2, scheduled for Cinco de Mayo!

Brunch.  My favorite meal!

Brunch. My favorite meal!

Obviously, I have a bit of a brunch obsession.  My friend and I went all out.  We poured some mimosas, mixed up a colorful fruit salad with pears, clementines, blueberries, and rasperries, and made eggs with some of the vegetables I had on hand.  The resulting kale, onion, thyme, and egg scramble was delicious!  It was a great, savory dish to balance out the sweet pancakes.

Fruit salad

Fruit salad

Now about those pancakes…

I didn’t read the instructions thoroughly, so I overlooked the chill time in the whipped cream instructions.  Our coconut cream ended up as more of a syrup replacement than whipped cream.  While I recommend following the original instructions, our resulting cream tasted awesome, and added a bit of extra moisture to the pancakes.  We made a few other modifications, just based on the ingredients we had.  Some of them I will be repeating!

Pancakes and Eggs

Pancakes and Eggs

Vegan Tiramisu Pancakes

Recipe by Chloe Coscarelli, slightly modified

For the Coconut Whipped Cream

  • 13.5 ounce can full-fat coconut milk, chilled
  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar, plus extra for dusting

For the Pancakes

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground hazelnut coffee*
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon Malibu coconut rum**
  • 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips (dairy-free), plus more for garnish
  • Canola oil, for greasing

*Original recipe: instant espresso powder

**Original recipe: dark rum

For the whipped cream, chill the bowl and whisk of a hand mixer in freezer for 10 minutes.  Skim the solidified cream from the can of coconut milk, and transfer solids to the bowl.  Do not include the coconut water.  Add powdered sugar and whip until cream begins to stiffen.  Chill whipped cream in an airtight container for 3 hours to 1 day before serving.

For the pancakes, whisk flour, baking powder, coffee/espresso, and salt in a large bowl.  In a small bowl, whisk water, maple syrup, and rum.  Add the wet mixture into the dry and mix until just combined.  Gently fold in the chocolate chips.  Do not overmix.

Lightly oil a large, nonstick skillet, and heat over medium-high heat.  Pour 1/4 cup of batter onto skillet, and cook until bubbles appear in center.  Flip with a spatula, and cook other side for about 1 minute, until golden-brown.  Repeat with remaining batter, adding more oil when needed.  If batter becomes too thick, add 1 tablespoon of water.

To serve, top pancakes with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of powdered sugar and chocolate chips.

So much to love

So much to love

We ended up with a lot of leftover coconut cream.  I threw some of it into the blender with fruit the next day for a tasty dessert smoothie.  Yum!

While I’m not a vegan, I enjoy vegan recipes.  I generally avoid dairy products, so vegan baking is usually safer for me.  After making (and devouring) these pancakes, I can’t wait to pick up a copy of Chloe’s book, Chloe’s Vegan Desserts!

What are your favorite brunch recipes?

New favorites

My new favorites

Happy eating!

-C

Meyer Lemon and Blueberry Scones [MMAZ]

Spring is officially here! We even had a taste of summer last week, with a few days of 80 degree temperatures. Suffice to say I am craving lighter foods, fresh fruits, and delicate flavors like lemon (Meyer lemon to be exact).

Spring colors and flavors

Spring colors and flavors

Meyer lemons are actually a cross between a lemon and an orange, resulting in darker, deeper yellow skin and aromatic, less sour juice than a typical lemon. The taste is absolutely incredible in baked goods–light and “zippy”, taking a dish to a whole new level of “yum.”

It’s been a while since I cooked with new-to-me ingredients that required research… Enter the result of this weekend’s kitchen experiment: scones made with spelt flour and coconut palm sugar, inspired by the recipe Shanna shared, via her friend Kendra, last Tuesday. Shanna’s recipe used Einkorn flour, but I could not find any at the store, so I decided to use spelt flour instead.

Meyer lemon and blueberry oat scones

Meyer lemon and blueberry oat scones

Spelt is an ancient grain with a mellow, nutty flavor, and slightly higher protein content than wheat. Though it is not gluten free (it actually has more gluten than wheat), it is easily digestible. Sarah B of My New Roots explains more:

“Spelt is an excellent source of manganese, which helps protect your cells from free radical damage, keeps your bones strong, maintains nerve health, and promotes the function of the thyroid gland. Spelt is also very high in fiber and contains a good amount of protein.” (source)

Delicious!

Delicious!

Coconut palm sugar is made by tapping the nectar from the coconut palm tree and drying the juice in a kettle drum. It condenses into an unrefined brown sugar that can be used as a 1-to-1 replacement for white or brown sugar. It has a deep caramel flavor, perfect for baked goods. You can read more information here.

one scone

Perfect for breakfast or tea time

Meyer Lemon Blueberry Oat Scones

Adapted from Shanna’s recipe

Makes 8 scones

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup spelt flour
  • 3/4 cup oat flour (make your own by blending steel-cut oats until fine)
  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup coconut palm sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Zest of 1 – 2 meyer lemons
  • 8 ounces (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (or, in a pinch, strained regular yogurt, per above note)
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • Juice of 2 – 3 Meyer Lemons
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Method

Preheat your oven to 400°F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, oats, coconut sugar, baking powder, baking soda, ginger and salt. Toss the lemon zest with the dry ingredients.

Add the cubed butter to the dry ingredients. Rub or cut the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles small, coarse peas (using your fingers or a pastry cutter). Add yogurt and honey, and toss everything together with a fork or your hands until all of the dry ingredients are moistened.

Add the lemon juice last. Use the juice to bring the batter together, adding a little at a time until the mixture forms a nice dough that will hold together in a disc shape–not too wet or too crumbly. Gently fold in blueberries.

Form the dough into a large, flat disc on the parchment paper, pressing with your fingers as needed. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, until golden brown on top. Cool for 15 minutes before cutting into 8 pieces.

Cut into wedges, like a pie

Cut into wedges, like a pie

The “base” for these scones came from Shanna and Kendra, but the blueberry-lemon combo was inspired by this week’s Meatless Monday from A – Z link-up, hosted by Heather. Although I missed the last two weeks (avocado), I hope to make it to the party more often this round!

BWV-Round2-April-Blueberry_thumb

Though I did not notice a huge difference in taste using the spelt flour (versus my usual whole wheat), I like the idea of an easier to digest and higher protein grain. Have you ever cooked with spelt flour? Please share any recipes you have tried! 

Enjoy!

-L

Almond Meal Pancakes and Raspberry Compote

Brinner

Brinner

Without a doubt, breakfast is my favorite meal of the day.  Breakfast, Brunch, Brinner… I’ll eat breakfast food any time of day!

Scrambled Eggs with Spinach and Garlic

Scrambled Eggs with Spinach and Garlic

I’ve been wanting to make buckwheat pancakes, but couldn’t find buckwheat flour at the store.  I decided to experiment with almond meal instead!  They didn’t hold their shape well, but they tasted delicious.  I whipped up a simple raspberry compote to serve on top, and made scrambled eggs with spinach and garlic to have on the side.

Pancakes, Eggs, and Compote

Pancakes, Eggs, and Compote

Almond Meal Pancakes

Serves 1

  • 1/2 cup almond meal**
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 banana, mashed
  • 1/2 cup soy or nut milk
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • Raspberry compote, recipe below

Stir together almond meal and baking powder in a large bowl.  Add banana and milk, and beat until smooth.

Melt coconut oil in a frying pan over medium high heat.  Pour batter into rounds, 1/3 cup at a time.  Flip the pancake when the batter starts to bubble.  Cook until both sides are golden brown.  Serve with raspberry compote.

**Almond meal can be replaced with buckwheat flour.

Almond Meal Pancakes

Almond Meal Pancakes

Raspberry Compote

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries

Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Stir in the brown sugar and lemon juice.  Cook until sugar dissolves.  Add berries and cook, tossing gently, until berries are warm and juices release, 2-3 minutes.  Serve warm.

Raspberry Compote

Raspberry Compote

I enjoyed this for a Tuesday evening Brinner (breakfast for dinner), before heading out to see the lighting of the Bay Bridge.  It was a great, simple meal before a fun night out in the city!  Such fun!

Another view

Another view

Check out Lindsey’s Almond Pulp Crackers for another exciting (and more successful) use for almond meal.

Happy Eating!

-C

Vegan Buckwheat Banana Bread

When I left home last Friday for a weekend away, I left 4 bananas ripening in the kitchen.

There is nothing better than coming home to perfectly over-ripe bananas, just begging to be baked into moist and delicious banana bread.

Vegan Buckwheat Banana Bread

Vegan Buckwheat Banana Bread

Banana bread has always been a favorite in my family. One of my earliest kitchen memories is mixing up a tasty loaf of banana bread with my mom. Her tried and true recipe includes extra cinnamon, and it always makes the house smell terrific.

Lately I have been experimenting with “alternative” recipes. Andrea’s Banana Date Bread and Jenna’s molasses-sweetened version have both been big hits. Coincidentally, big sister Julie has also been experimenting with her own variation, using applesauce as the primary sweetener.

loaf from above

When I bought my first bag of buckwheat flour a few weeks ago, I quickly decided that buckwheat banana bread was in order. I have been reading more and more about this grain seed, and couldn’t wait to experiment.

Buckwheat is the seed of an herb related to rhubarb that is native to Russia. The triangular seeds are ground to make buckwheat flour, but can be found in hulled form, as groats (raw) or kasha (roasted). Buckwheat is gluten free, high in protein, and contains all essential amino acids. It has a distinctive flavor, often described as “assertive” and “nutty.”

slices

Vegan Buckwheat Banana Bread

Inspired by Sarah at My New Roots

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • 6 Tablespoons coconut oil
  • 6 Tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 ¼ cups mashed ripe bananas (approximately 5 medium bananas)
  • 2 cups buckwheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts

Method

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a loaf pan with baking paper, or lightly oil and dust with flour, shaking out excess.

Put the almond milk, coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla, and bananas in a blender and blend until smooth (or use an immersion blender). In a large bowl combine dry ingredients. Add banana mixture and combine using as few strokes as possible. Fold in nuts.

Pour into prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes.

front view

My husband often gives me a hard time about my “alternative” baking choices, and he was well-prepared to dislike this bread. Although he described it as “not very sweet” (an intentional choice on my part) and “wheaty” (that would be the earthy buckwheat flavor), he proclaimed “it’s good!” He even asked if he could take a slice or two to work with him.

Husband approved, nutrient rich, deliciously moist and comforting, buckwheat banana bread is a definite success.

Have you ever baked with buckwheat flour?

-L

P.S. This post was shared at Thank Your Body Thursday. Check out Robin’s great weekly link-up for all things healthy living (food exercise, cleaning, and more).