I am not a fan of pancakes. Whether they’re served warm with butter and jam or swimming in butter and Cointreau, they just never appeal. The thought of a crepe filled with chicken or prawns in a creamy sauce leaves me feeling cold.
In fact, the only pancakes that I really do love are duck pancakes – a fabulous firm Chinese pancake lathered with plum sauce and rolled around shredded roast duck, spring onions and cucumber. When I left London for the gourmet delights of Andalucia, my farewell party was called “The Last of the Duck Pancakes”. Little mini duck pancakes were my signature canapés when I had Annie B’s Parties & Lunches, my catering company in London. Thousands and thousands of them were devoured at catering events and cocktail parties over the years. RSI due to duck pancake rolling wasn’t uncommon in my kitchen.
Tomorrow, is 28th February and while people up and down UK will be flipping their pancakes in celebration of Pancake Day/Shrove Tuesday, people in Andalucia will be celebrating the birth of their region with a public holiday. On 28th February 1980, Andalucia became an autonomous community of Spain.
Tomorrow I will be celebrating both days with these delicious delights combining many of our daily Andaluz ingredients with a nod to Pancake Day in the UK. They make the most perfect canapés or can be served as starters, too. The following mixture will yield approx. 36 little canapés if using half a tablespoon of the mixture per blob or 8 larger “pancakes” if using 2 tablespoons of the mixtures per “pancake”.
My Alternative Pancake Day Recipe
Sweetcorn, Mint & Feta Fritters with Roasted Red Pepper & Avocado Salsa
For the Fritters
- 140g self-raising flour.
- 2 medium eggs.
- Half a cup fizzy water.
- 160g tinned sweetcorn kernels.
- 1 heaped tbsp chopped mint.
- 50g crumbled feta cheese.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Chopped or sliced chorizo, preferably Iberico.
- Mix together the flour and eggs.
- With the beater still running, trickle in the fizzy water until a smooth batter is achieved.
- Fold in all remaining ingredients.
- Lightly grease a non-stick fry pan with olive oil and spoon in your blobs when hot. After a few minutes, turn each with a spatula until both sides are golden and the pancakes firm to touch. Place on wire tray till cool.
- Wipe the pan with a clean paper towel and crank up the heat. Add the chorizo and fry till crispy.
- Drain on a paper towel.
For the Roasted Red Pepper Salsa
- 1 med-large red pepper.
- 1 small garlic clove with green shoot removed (this is the root that runs through older garlic cloves which is visible when you cut in half north to south).
- Large handful of coriander, leaves only.
- Juice of 1 lime.
- 2 tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- 1 large avocado, diced.
- Char a medium red pepper on all sides until skin is charred. Place and seal in a plastic bag and leave for 10 mins. The skin will slip off easily now, without the use of a running tap. Remove all skin and seeds.
- Place the pepper in a blender with the large handful of fresh coriander leaves, garlic, lime juice and blend. Trickle in the olive oil and season to taste.
- Fold through the diced avocado.
- If canapés, place each small fritter on a serving plate.
- Top the pancake with a spoonful of salsa taking care that it’s not too much to cause messy fingers when picked up.
- Place chorizo on top.
- If as a starter, add a fritter on each plate.
- Top with salsa and chorizo.
- Garnish with a pile of dressed rocket and roasted pine nuts.
Finally, sit back and serve with a glass of chilled Fino or Manzanilla giving a toast to Andalucia!