Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

It’s Shrove Tuesday tomorrow aka Pancake day! Pick up some sour cream today and make up this batter tonight, then you will be all set for tomorrow!

Selma's Table

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

I’ve been making pancakes at the weekends for as long as J can remember.  He loves them; his friends love them; my friends love them. I’ve made them with spelt flour, buckwheat flour, self raising flour, wholewheat flour; I’ve added coconut flakes to the mix and made all sorts of quick fruit compotes to go with them; I’ve cooked them in coconut oil. But in the end, I always return to these ones – they really are the nicest. Simple, straightforward with ingredients that I usually always have on hand.

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

The acid in the sour cream is what makes these so delicious – it produces tender pancakes that are light and moist. If you don’t have any sour cream, you can use buttermilk and if you don’t have buttermilk just add a spoonful of vinegar or lemon juice to milk and leave it to thicken for 15 minutes or so.

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Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds

Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy SeedsThese Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds are brilliant to make for the  bake sale table at school fetes, which is what I first made them for. The addition of sour cream makes them incredibly tender and light. They were so good that I got an email from a dad who had bought one, asking for the recipe.

I do miss those school fetes now that J is at senior school. There was so much good will and pulling together to raise money for the scholarship fund as well as other charities. The Christmas fetes used to be spectacular themed events with parents, the Art department, the children and the maintenance department working in tandem to transform the school. One year the theme was Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory with the full size bed and a paper mache family in it, in the entrance hall and Santa’s grotto awash with giant (cardboard) colourful sweets and candy canes. Probably the most spectacular was the Narnia theme, with a wardrobe complete with fur coats as the entry into the grotto and the school walls covered in white sparkly batting with thousands of hand made and decorated snowflakes and decorations hanging from the ceiling and on the walls. There was even a lamppost positioned outside the school doors. The fetes were really very special and I feel so privileged to have been a part of those happy times.

These Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds can be made with a hand mixer or in a food processor but either way, don’t take long to come together. A slice is wonderful with a cuppa and the cakes are also good to take in to work or as a hostess gift – delicious home made cakes are ALWAYS appreciated!

Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds

Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds

Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds

Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds

Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds

Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds

Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cakes with Poppy Seeds

Marmalade and Sour Cream Loaf Cake with Poppy Seeds

  • Servings: 2 loaf cakes
  • Difficulty: easy
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Adapted from Jane Hornby’s Bitter Orange and Poppy Seed Cake for BBC Good Food

Each loaf cake cuts into 8 slices

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 Tbsp thick cut marmalade
  • 150g sour cream
  • 175g soft butter
  • 175g golden caster sugar
  • 3 large eggs at room temperature
  • 200g  flour
  • 2½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • zest of one orange
  • 2 tsp toasted poppy seeds

Topping:

  • 5 Tbsp marmalade
  • Juice of ½ an orange

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat the oven to 160 C/320F
  2. Prepare 2 x 2 lb  loaf tins with paper liners or butter the sides and lay a strip of parchment paper to cover the bottom and run up the short sides as handles.
  3. Gently heat the marmalade  – you can do this on a medium setting in the microwave or in a pan on the hob.  Off the heat, stir in the sour cream . Let mix cool.
  4. Place the butter in a bowl or food processor and beat/blend until smooth. Add the sugar and beat/blend for a couple of minutes. Add the eggs, one by one, beating/blending well each time. The mix will look curdled but it will all be ok in the end.  Scrape down the sides and beat/blend again.
  5. In a separate bowl, measure out the flour, baking powder and soda, salt, poppy seeds and grate in the orange zest. Mix well with a fork or whisk; add the wet mix and beat in.
  6. Stir in the sour cream/marmalade mixture.
  7. Pour into the prepared tins  and place in the oven. I find it quite useful to divide up the batter by eye, leaving some behind in the mixing bowl and then weighing each tin to see where the remaining batter should go.
  8. Bake for 1 hour. Check at 30 minutes and  if they are colouring too much, cover loosely with baking parchment.  The cakes are done when a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Give the cakes another 5 or 10 minutes if necessary. Mine were ready in 30 minutes but I have a very hot oven.
  9. While they are in the oven, prepare the glaze; heat the orange juice and marmalade until reduced but still runny. It will take about 5 minutes or so. Set aside to cool.
  10. Cool the cakes for 10 minutes on a rack in their tins.
  11. Turn them out and spoon over the glaze while the cakes are still warm

Loaf cakes will keep for 3-4 days if wrapped. Use baking paper to cover the top and foil to overwrap with.

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

I’ve been making pancakes at the weekends for as long as J can remember.  He loves them; his friends love them; my friends love them. I’ve made them with spelt flour, buckwheat flour, self raising flour, wholewheat flour; I’ve added coconut flakes to the mix and made all sorts of quick fruit compotes to go with them; I’ve cooked them in coconut oil. But in the end, I always return to these ones – they really are the nicest. Simple, straightforward with ingredients that I usually always have on hand.

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

The acid in the sour cream is what makes these so delicious – it produces tender pancakes that are light and moist. If you don’t have any sour cream, you can use buttermilk and if you don’t have buttermilk just add a spoonful of vinegar or lemon juice to milk and leave it to thicken for 15 minutes or so.

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

The addition of a little baking soda is really important here – when baking soda meets with an acid (like sour cream, buttermilk, vinegar, etc) there is a chemical reaction which results in the production of carbon dioxide, water and a salt. This reaction happens at room temperature before exposure to any heat and is what makes the pancake batter fluffy while still sitting in the bowl.  Joy the Baker has a really good explanation of baking powder vs baking soda here.

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

I tend to buy punnets of blueberries in the height of summer and stash them in the freezer. I just pop them onto the pancakes frozen. By the time the pancakes have been flipped, the blueberries have not only thawed but have heated through completely.

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

Because I make them so regularly, I bought a really wide 32 cm non-stick pan which I also use to make cocktail sized blinis for parties. The larger surface facilitates making a lot of pancakes in a shorter space of time.

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

Left over pancakes are eaten standing at the fridge, when J comes home from school at the same time as asking when dinner will be ready…for the more civilised among you, these re-heat really well in a low oven or in the microwave.

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

Sour Cream and Cinnamon Pancakes with Blueberries

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Adapted from Martha Stewart’s Best Buttermilk Pancakes Recipe

Makes about 18 x 4 inch pancakes – enough for 3 – 4 servings or double up the recipe for larger portions or more people.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup/125 g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp caster sugar
  • 150 ml sour cream (or buttermilk or mix one teaspoon of vinegar into 150ml of milk and let it sit for 15 minutes until it thickens)
  • 150 ml milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 Tbsp/30g melted butter in a medium sized bowl and cooled slightly
  • Punnet of  blueberries
  • Butter for the pan
  • Maple syrup to serve

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Measure out and place the first 6 ingredients (which are the dry ones) in a mixing bowl and give it a good whisking to evenly distribute the ingredients and aerate the mixture.
  2. Crack the egg into the cooled melted butter and whisk until it is a uniform creamy mass – I find that this helps the butter to be more evenly distributed.
  3. Loosen the sour cream by pouring in a little milk into it and whisking until smooth. Then pour this into the egg mix and whisk until there are no lumps left, finally add the rest of the milk and whisk thoroughly once more.
  4. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the egg mixture. Using a circular stirring motion, gently stir to draw in the dry ingredients to the middle, being careful not to over mix – a few floury patches are fine. It should be quite thick and a bit lumpy.
  5. SET ASIDE for 1/2 an hour at room temperature or overnight in the fridge.
  6. Once the batter has rested the surface will be covered in holes and  bubbles – this is just how it should be. Don’t, whatever you do, stir the batter at this stage. You just want to scoop out tablespoonfuls, straight into the frying pan.
  7. Pre-heat the oven to 75 C or very low. Get an oven proof dish out and a piece of foil to cover it with.
  8. Put the widest non-stick fry pan  you have, on a medium low heat. If it is too high, the outside burns before the insides are cooked…Once the pan is hot, brush with a little butter (I stick a piece on the end of a table knife and swipe it around the pan, cringing whenever the metal touches the non-stick base).
  9. Using a tablespoon, scoop out and place the batter on the pan – I can get 4 to 5 pancakes going in mine but it is a rather large pan. The batter spreads so just try spacing 3 out to start with.
  10. Once the batter is in the pan, plop 3 or 4 blueberries on the top of each pancake. They will need to cook for 3 minutes or so. Keep checking and also keep an eye on the heat which you may have to keep adjusting. (Just have a peek under the pancake, by lifting a corner with a spatula, to see how it is colouring)
  11. When the tops of the pancakes have lots of holes in them, it is time to flip them over.  If a blueberry escapes, just push it back under. This side will not take as long to cook – about a minute – so keep an eye on them. When they are done, remove them to the ovenproof platter, loosely cover with foil and pop them in the oven. Carry on with the next round, lightly buttering the pan when you need to and keeping an eye on the heat.
  12. Serve with proper Canadian maple syrup.

Substitutions
Bananas. Don’t add the blueberries. After all the pancakes are done, wipe the pan clean with a paper towel and melt a little butter in it. Then slice up a couple of not too squishy bananas straight into the pan and let them caramelise, flipping over once. Serve on top of the pancakes with maple syrup.

Courgette, Feta and Thyme Bake

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Pinterest is the rabbit hole of the internet for me. It has led me to many a new discovery; from art to icons, amazing interiors and gardens and food of course. If there is one thing that can be said about Pinterest is that it is absolutely bursting at the seams with food pictures from pinners all over the world.

We have had an amazing summer this year and the courgettes have been absolutely delicious. Whilst I love them raw, shredded and dressed with lemon, olive oil with shavings of parmesan cheese and a sprinkle of fresh mint or griddlled and added to a couscous, I am always on the lookout for new recipes. So when I came across this pin which led me to this recipe, I knew that it would become a summer regular at my table. It is light and lemony with depth from the golden onions, salty with feta and with a wonderful herbal note from the thyme. It is absolutely delicious!

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You gently sauté an onion until it is golden, stir in some minced garlic and thyme leaves then sauté courgette slices until they have just started to soften and are coated in the delicious flavoured oil.

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You take a couple of eggs; and these are some of the most delicious eggs I have ever eaten, from a biodynamic farm in Sussex that I get from our local Farmers Market.

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Whisk them lightly, then stir in lemon juice, sour cream, grated parmesan and feta cheese.

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Layer a scant half of the courgettes in the bottom of a well buttered baking dish

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and cover with a really scant half of the egg mixture, spreading it as necessary to cover the courgettes.

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Then do the same again, finishing with a handful of halved cherry tomatoes.

After baking, let it cool down a little to have warm with some seared salmon or roast chicken or have as a lovely light lunch with a salad. It would also be terrific to take on a picnic.

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I had half a pack of feta left over which I find always goes off before I can use it. So this time I cubed and packed it into a tiny little jar with thyme and covered the cubes with olive oil and popped it in the fridge.  Use in salads or when roasting red peppers…

Courgette, Feta and Thyme Bake

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
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Adapted from Kalyn’s Kitchen.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 4 medium courgettes
  • 1-2 Tbsp worth of fresh thyme leaves depending on how much you like thyme
  • 1 Tbsp mild olive oil (don’t waste extra virgin on frying)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 150g sour cream which is half a tub
  • 100g feta cubed or crumbled
  • 2 Tbsp grated parmesan which you can judge by eyeballing the pile
  • 1/2 a lemon
  • A handful of cherry tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 190 degrees C.
  2. Start by warming the olive oil in the pan on a medium heat. Peel, halve and slice the onion into half moons and tip into pan, sprinkling with a little salt to help release the water in the onions. Wash the courgettes and slice into rounds that are about as thick a pound coin. Keep an eye on the onions, stirring from time to time so that they don’t catch and burn. Stir in the garlic and the thyme leaves. I added a splash of water to help keep everything going at this point. Then tip in the sliced courgettes and sauté for about 4 or 5 minutes – long enough to only just soften them and coat them in the lovely oil. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  3. Lightly whisk the eggs then stir in the sour cream, parmesan, feta, the juice from squeezing that lemon half and some cracked black pepper. It will feel thick and look a little curdled from the lemon juice. The cheeses are both quite salty so you shouldn’t need any additional salt.
  4. In a well buttered ovenproof dish, layer a scant half of the courgettes and cover with a very scant half of the egg mix. Repeat, finishing with a scattering of the halved cherry tomatoes.
  5. Bake for 25- 30 minutes. The original recipe call for 40 minutes but that is much too long in my oven that seems super hot. I checked after 20 minutes and it was almost done so I took it out after 30 minutes.
  6. Let it cool a little before serving warm.

Serves 6 as side dish or 4 as a light lunch with salad

© Selma Jeevanjee and Selma’s Table, 2013. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material, including photographs without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Selma Jeevanjee and Selma’s Table with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.