Gluten free pump-king pancakes

Pump-king pancakes indeed.   INDEED!  Let me tell you that the king of the Cucurbit family which also includes cucumbers, melons and squashs, is a grand thing that makes incredible baked goods, soups and now, GF pancakes.  One of these days I will grow pumpkins and go through the process of extracting that incredibly healthful and tasty flesh, but for now 1 large can of pumpkin had me set to make gluten free pumpkin pancakes and the healthy pumpkin bites I mentioned in my post on getting more veggies in the morning meal.  Plus, I couldn’t leave you, our dear readers thinking that only Little Sis’ family is fixated on pancakes.  I love seeing all the wonderful things she does with pancakes including topping them with a yummy berry sauce… but with a gluten free husband, we can’t try all of her pancake ideas.  The following recipe seemed like a match made in crack of dawn heaven.

So one Saturday morning, along with the help of my 11 year old photographer, we attempted to see if one really could make a decent pancake that is mostly egg and pumpkin.

Grain Free “Orange Vegetable” Pancakes
From : Katie Kimball
http://www.kitchenstewardship.com/recipes/orange-vegetable-pancakes/

Ingredients
1 c. cooked, pureed squash* (I used canned pumpkin)
4-5 eggs**
2 Tbs. coconut flour OR 1/4 c. whole wheat flour OR almond flour OR 1/3 c. sourdough starter OR brown rice flour (I used brown rice flour)
½ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. cloves
¼ tsp. ginger
¼ tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
1-2 Tbs. maple syrup (optional) – I opted yes
1 tsp. vanilla (optional) – again, I opted yes
Instructions
Separate eggs. In one bowl, whip egg whites a few minutes until frothy/foamy.

I dumped the yolks right in the mixing bowl and placed the whites in a separate bowl.

This is supposed to make the pancakes more fluffy but is not required. I will probably skip it next time to see how big a difference it makes.

In a separate bowl, combine yolks with squash, flour, sweetener, vanilla and spices. Fold in egg whites.


I used safflower oil with a little depth to it -not the usual barely there for pancakes.  This is not a low fat breakfast!!

They smell divine – and look pretty good too!

The author offers this : The lazy way: Instead of separating the eggs, just mix everything together willy nilly in one bowl. The pancakes might not have as much height or fluff, but they’re still perfectly fine, especially for a weekday morning! I often use my stick blender to whiz it all together, especially if I have un-pureed squash or sweet potato.

They were (obviously) a little different in texture from the normal p’cake.  We all thought they were fabulous.  I made 1.5 times the recipe because that’s how much pumpkin I had and we only managed to save a few for freezing.

Oh what a veggie-ful, and delicious morning!

http://www.kitchenstewardship.com/recipes/orange-vegetable-pancakes/

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Cutting back on gluten

As if it isn’t hard enough to eat well in our overly ‘convenient,’ ‘sweet,’ ‘pre-fab’ culture, it looks like my husband has a problem with gluten.  After eliminating several early diagnoses of diverticulitis and intestinal adhesions, some research on our part, and a change in our diet is leading us to believe that he is indeed sensitive to gluten.  This is not the same thing as celiac disease which is an auto-immune disorder whereby gluten causes damage to the lining of the intestine, blocking absorption of nutrients and, as you might guess, also causes a myriad of symptoms that accompany malnutrition.  Although Celiac disease is thought to be a much more serious health problem, there are experts who claim that while gluten sensitivity is a lesser reaction to gluten, it is nevertheless one that may cause a host of discomforts as well as chronic illness.

So back to the difficulties of eating the way you want in our culture… there is gluten in many, many processed foods (often masqueraded with names like emulsifier, hydrolyzed plant protein, natural flavorings, stabilizers and starches).  Yet another reason to avoid products that have vague or unrecognizable ingredients.  It also turns out that wheat has been bred / hybridized to increase gluten content as we Americans like springy, spongy bread that you can roll into balls and throw at your classmates (oops sorry a memory interjected itself there). This increase has been followed with an increase in celiac disease!

All this to say that this morning I altered my usual pancake recipe by substituting buckwheat flour for whole wheat flour.  The recipe is:
1 cup oats
1 cup flour
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp – 1 Tbsp cinnamon (optional)
2 small eggs or 1 jumbo egg
2 Tbsp oil (or melted butter)
1 3/4 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla (optional)
Mix dry, mix wet, mix together and following my little sis’ advice, cook on an evenly hot surface that is only mildly oiled, if at all (see her post “Cast Iron Pancake Chef“).  I usually do 1.5 or 2 times this recipe so I can freeze leftovers for future breakfasts.

And remember, that no matter what nutritional advice, warning, fad, new info, latest thang you follow, nothing is ever better than eating fresh, whole foods.