Saturday, November 19, 2011

Ottolenghi's Green Pancakes with Lime Butter

I've been slowly cooking my way through Yotam Ottolenghi's Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London's Ottolenghi. I posted his garlic harissa soup and chard and saffron omelette.  And I'm a really big fan of his cauliflower-cumin fritters with lime yogurt, which comes from the eponymous Ottolenghi: The Cookbook.  
This recipe for Green Pancakes with Lime Butter (from Plenty)  was another recipe I really liked. It's perfect for an adult brunch (the flavor is a bit too strong for the kids-- or at least mine).  
Now, that being said, I can't imagine how you could possibly use 2 green chiles in these pancakes without burning out your taste buds. I admire those who can take on some heat, but since I was serving this in the morning I didn't want my friends to get such an intense wake-up call. So I used 1 chile instead of 2. 
The recipe didn't specify what type of 'green chiles' to use, so I went with serrano since I've used it in cooking before. (I vacillated between serrano and jalapeƱo.) It's possible that you could use 2 chiles that are more mild, but since I'm not an expert on peppers, I went with something I know.
The lime butter is delicious and it has a wonderful flavor that cooled the pancake's heat. Scrumptious! I had A LOT of leftover butter, so I guess you can make less to start. Or you smother your vegetables in the leftover lime butter. It's pretty darn delicious. 
Oh Yotam, I do like your dishes. Any chance you'll open up an eatery state-side?  
Green Pancakes with Lime Butter (Courtesy of Yotam Ottolenghi, Plenty
Serves 3-4
Ingredients
Lime butter
8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
Grated zest of 1 lime
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1 tbsp chopped cilantro
1/2 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/4 tsp chile flakes
Pancake
1/2 lb (about 8 cups) spinach, washed
3/4 cup self-rising flour 
1 tbsp baking powder
1 egg
4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cumin
2/3 cup milk
6 medium green onions, finely sliced
2 fresh green chiles, thinly sliced (I went with 1)
1 egg white
Olive oil for frying
Directions
To make the lime butter. Put the butter in a medium bowl and beat it with a wooden spoon until it turns soft and creamy. Stir in the rest of the ingredients. Tip onto a sheet of plastic wrap and roll into a sausage shape. Twist the ends of the wrap to seal the flavored butter. Chill until firm.
Wilt the spinach in a pan with a splash of water. Drain in a sieve and, when cool, squeeze hard with your hands to remove as much moisture as possible. Roughly chop and put aside.
Put the flour, baking powder, whole egg, melted butter, salt, cumin and milk in a large mixing bowl and whisk until smooth. Add the green onions, chiles and spinach and mix with a fork. Whisk the egg white to soft peaks and gently fold it into the batter.
Pour a small amount of olive oil into a heavy frying pan and place on medium-high heat. For each pancake, ladle 2 tablespoons of batter into the pan and press down gently. You should get smallish pancakes, about 3 inches in diameter and 3/8 inch thick. Cook for about 2 minutes on each side, or until you get a good golden-green color. Transfer to paper towels and keep warm. Continue making pancakes, adding oil to the pan as needed, until the batter is used up.
To serve, pile up three warm pancakes per person and place a slice of flavored butter on top to melt.
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2 comments:

  1. i made these as an appetizer by making the pancakes small like little bilinis. that butter is so delicious.

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  2. These were Uh-MAY-zing! I completely agree with you about the heat, two chiles would have been too much. There was a lot of butter left over, oh well, guess my veggies have a new little friend :) Happy New Year!

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