Sultana Banana Mini Pancakes (Vegan)

Today I’m sharing a recipe for Sultana Banana Mini Pancakes ❤️ They are quick, easy to make and use basic pantry ingredients. They’re perfect for serving as a weekend breakfast or for ‘elevenses’. Me and Lil’ L have made them three times so far and they have proven to be a big hit with the family.

Have you tried adding sultanas to pancake batter before? They work beautifully in these American-style fluffy pancakes. In fact, I loved them so much that I ended up adding more than the original recipe called for.

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Top 5 Vegan Pancake Recipes

Shrove Tuesday (‘Pancake Day’) is arriving early this year. It’s actually next Tuesday…. February 9th! And if you’re new to veganism, or just fancy trying something a little different, I have my top five vegan pancake recipes to share with you. They’re super easy to make and use basic pantry staples that you’re bound to have on hand. Since they’re vegan, they’re suitable for anyone with dairy or egg allergies. They can also be made gluten free.

So let’s kick off with my number one favourite pancake for Shrove Tuesday – the Vegan Crêpe

1. Vegan Crêpe-Style Pancakes

A huge fan of crêpes, Lil’ L declared that he loves this vegan version as much as he loves the crêpes he eats in France. Endorsements don’t come much bigger than that!

Vegan Crepe-Style Pancakes
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Fresh Vegan Magazine & Day Radley’s Banana Notella Pancakes (Vegan and Gluten-Free!)

Fresh Vegan is a digital food magazine for the UK and Europe. Launched in Winter 2013, the magazine will appeal to anyone interested in plant-based eating, whether they be omnivores, vegetarians, vegans or the health conscious.

Fresh Vegan Spring 2014 Magazine Cover 300

The magazine’s 100+ pages are jam-packed with features, interviews and recipes from chefs, restaurant owners, street food vendors, food writers, authors, bloggers and food producers from all over the UK and Europe.

Oz from Sultan's Delight at Street Diner
Here’s the lovely Oz from Sultan’s Delight in Brighton (one of the contributors in the Spring issue)

The magazine also has great features on where to eat, sleep and shop for vegan goodies in locations around Europe and the UK. In the Spring issue, the spotlight was on beautiful Cornwall, Prague and Germany.

LoVeg vegan restaurant in the stunning old city of Prague

Alongside the features, the contributors share one or more of their favourite recipes. One recipe in the Spring issue that caught my eye was Day Radley’s Banana Notella Pancakes, which happen to be both vegan and gluten-free! I’ve had success with gluten-free American-style pancakes before (my favourite is this Blackstrap Ginger Cookie Pancake), but I’ve never tried a crêpe-style (ie. folding) gluten-free pancake before. Since Lil’ L is such a ‘pancake monster’, I knew this would be a great recipe to share with the family.

The pancake was filled with home-made vegan nutella. While I’ve made lots of versions of dairy-free nutella in the past (using both raw and roasted nuts), I’d never made one the same way at Day. I was intrigued to give it a try!

Healthy Vegan Nutella

And the verdict? Both the pancakes and the ‘notella’ were a big hit with the family! The banana pancake had a nice texture and flavour, and while much thicker than a classic crêpe, I was still able to fold it. I trialled the pancakes using Doves gluten-free plain white and brown bread flours, and both worked.

Vegan & Gluten Free Banana Nutella Pancake

The ‘notella’ was really yummy! Day recommends using a blender but I knew my blender wouldn’t be up to the job, so I used the food processor instead. I did need to add more water to achieve a smooth, spreadable consistency and I also added some vanilla extract, but that was just down to personal taste.

The ‘notella’ is also scrumptious served on warm toast

Here’s Day’s lovely recipes (with my notes and ‘tweaks’ in brackets)

Healthy Vegan Nutella

SPECIAL OFFER: Fresh Vegan is offering Bit of the Good Stuff readers the chance to download the Spring 2014 issue in PDF format for just £1.95 (usual price £3.95). Click here to purchase. Offers end Sunday 25th May 2014.

And keep a look out for the Summer issue of Fresh Vegan. You must just spot a familiar face in there 😉

Have a wonderful weekend everyone! xx

Vegan Crepe-style Pancakes

I’ve posted a few pancakes recipes on the blog, including some of our all-time favourites like Apple Cinnamon, Banana, and Blueberry pancakes. However, I’ve never got round to posting our favourite crepe recipe. It’s high time that I put this right, especially as it’s Shrove Tuesday tomorrow!

Vegan Crepes with Lemon and Sugar

It’s a common misconception that eggs are an essential ingredient in pancakes. I’ve been making eggless pancakes for years, and I’ve not had one pancake fail yet! If anything, I find the vegan crepes are more robust than the traditional ones. I’m one of those people that’s utterly rubbish at flipping pancakes, so I much prefer a slightly more robust batter that can easily be flipped over with a slotted turner.

These crepes are delicious served as a dessert or treat. The traditional way to serve them is with lemon and sugar.  You could use ‘regular’ (cane) sugar, but my all-time favourite is coconut sugar. It has the most beautiful, caramel-like flavour which works so well in crepes. As an added bonus, unlike cane sugar, it’s low GI and nutrient-rich. It contains B vitamins, potassium, magnesium, zinc and iron!

Vegan Crepes

Lil’ L loves to serve his crepes with a drizzle of Sweet Freedom Choc Shot. We tried Choc Shot for the first time last month when it arrived in our subscription box from The Vegan Kind. While it tastes decadent, I was pleased to find that contains only natural ingredients, is free of cane sugar and low GI

Another of our favourite fillings is Nature’s Store Hazelnut & Cocoa Spread. It tastes just like Nutella… but it’s vegan! In the UK, it’s currently available in Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Morrisons. I especially love it as a crepe filling with sliced banana. It’s so good!

Happy Pancake Day everyone! xx

Do you celebrate Shrove Tuesday (fondly referred to as ‘Pancake Day’)? If so, what’s your favourite toppings? For me, just for this day, it has to be the traditional lemon and sugar! 😛








WIAW – I’ll bring the Humous (fat free) & Strawberry Frozen Yoghurt (dairy free) with recipes :)

It’s Wednesday!

It’s WIAW party time!

Hi everyone! I hope you’re having a great week so far!

Before I show you some yummy eats from yesterday, I’d like to begin by saying a huge THANK YOU to all my wonderful subscribers, readers, FB friends and Twitter followers. You guys are giving me so much support right now and I really appreciate it! I love reading all your comments too, so do keep them coming 🙂

Spooky Snacks and Healthy Halloween Treats

For anyone that’s unfamiliar with WIAW, let me briefly explain what it is. ‘What I Ate Wednesday’ is a virtual foodie party hosted by the lovely Jenn over at Peas and Crayons. Once a week, we record a day’s worth of eats, blog about it, then share our links on Jenn’s site. WIAW not only helps us to keep track of our own eating habits, but we also get oodles of inspiration from all the photos and recipes that are linked up each Wednesday. Literally hundreds of foodie bloggers now join in every week. It’s immense!

So here’s my entry for this week’s WIAW…

Apple Cinnamon pancakes left over from Sunday, which we warmed up in the microwave then topped with chopped pecans, walnuts, ground linseed and a drizzled of agave syrup. Totally delish! The recipe can be found here.

For lunch, I devoured this plate of vine ripened tomatoes, red pepper, courgette (zucchini) and carrot, along with a large portion of home-made humous … hummus … houmous? I have no idea which way to spell it these days!

Houmous is one of Lil’ L’s all-time favourite foods. However, since the shop-bought stuff has such a short use-by date (and with our new year’s resolution of zero food waste) I now always make my own. It’s so easy and quick. It literally takes a couple of minutes. If I ever have any spare or left over, I freeze it. See, no waste 😉

Every individual has their own preference when it comes to the flavour and consistency of humous. For Lil’ L, it mustn’t be ‘too oily’, ‘too garlicky’ or ‘too lemony’. For him, the best hummus ever is served at the Adventure Cafe in Bath.  For months, I’ve been playing around with the quantities, trying to get it ‘just right’. In the summer holidays, after yet another attempt, he dipped his cucumber stick into the humous, then uttered the words that I’ve been longing to hear…. “this is as good as the Adventure Cafe humous”. Yay!!! Success at last!

And do you know what else I love about this humous? It doesn’t contain oil, which means it has far less calories in it. More importantly, this means that I can devour huge quantities and not feel guilty about it. Happy days! 🙂

Here’s the recipe…

For Lil’ L’s and M’s packed lunch today, they took the Mexican black bean soup and corn bread left over from last night’s dinner. This was totally lush too! Recipe coming soon!

After School Snack
Lil’ L and I had a large chocolate banana energy smoothie. Recipe here!

I’m seriously addicted to these, as is Rachel!

Since the weather’s still mild here, I’m not ready for stews yet. However, it is the perfect time of year for crumbles. I adore both savoury and sweet crumbles. For dinner, I made what I’m currently calling ‘Veggie Patch Crumble’ because it included veggies that I imagine I would be pulling up from the allotment right now… if I had one 😉  It included parsnip, carrot, cabbage, sweet potato, garlic and onions.

I’ll write up the recipe and post it on Friday. Lil’ L absolutely loves it and devoured a whole plate full. Hopefully the yummy crumble topping and sweet flavoured veggies will entice other children to love it too 🙂

Due to the crazy weather we’ve experienced this year, most of my attempts at veggie and fruit growing have been a disaster…

Last year we had a gazillion plums.

Plumdiddlyumptious 2011

This year, we didn’t have a single plum on the tree.

Last year we had box loads of huge cooking apples.

Apples galore in 2011

This year, we have apples but they are tiny and pretty sad looking. We had only 3 apples on the eating apple tree 🙁

Remember the cob nuts from last year?

We haven’t managed to collect any this year. There may have been a few on the trees but the squirrels have had them (and fair play to them!)

On the plus side though, our two little strawberry plants have been amazing! We’ve had more strawberries this year than ever before. The plants are still producing fruit, though I doubt whether they’ll ripen up now.

Strawberries 2012

Luckily, I had a batch of strawberries in the freezer, which I used yesterday to make some instant frozen strawberry yoghurt. This has been one of our favourite summer desserts and now that I’ve got the food processor, it’s been a breeze to make. You simply throw the frozen strawberries and yoghurt into the processor and press the button. A couple of minutes later, you have soft whip.

It was too dark last night to take a photo, so here’s one from last time we made it.

We drizzled on some home-made strawberry sauce and, last night, we also sprinkled some home-made granola on top. It was totally scrumptious!

I was wondering whether this was a summer only dessert, but two new frozen yoghurt eateries have just opened in Bath, so I’m guessing not. I must check out whether they do a dairy-free version. If not, I’m happy to carry on making my own. It’s so simple. Here’s the recipe:

So that’s me done for another WIAW! Time to head over to Jenn’s and get inspired!

Enjoy the rest of your week everyone xx

Have you had any success growing fruit & veg this year? If so, I’d love to hear about it.

What have been your greatest successes? Have you been left with any surplus? If so, you know where I am 😉

Bluebells Galore! & Lil’ L’s Top Eats of the Week

Hi everyone!  I hope you’re having a great week so far 🙂

We’re doing okay, although the weather is a bit of a drag.  It’s just rain, rain, rain here 🙁  I mustn’t complain though as we’ve had beautiful weather for weeks and the country’s got a water shortage.   

Although I definitely don’t fancy going out on my bike in this weather, I am happy to walk about in the rain.  In fact, it can be pretty refreshing.  I love the smell of fresh rain and, providing you’ve got a big umbrella, it can be quite cosy and fun.

On Saturday, we decided to take a trip to West Woods in Wiltshire to check out the beautiful bluebells.  It rained on and off, but that didn’t matter. 

If anything, it made the trip even more magical as we were pretty much the only ones there.  It was so peaceful!

The bluebells were truly stunning! 

We noticed that there were quite a few bridleways through the forest so, as soon as the tracks dry out, we’ll take our bikes for a ride round.

The market town of Marlborough is not far from the woods so, after our walk, we popped there for a coffee.  It was market day so before we headed home, we managed to bag ourselves some great value fruit and veggies, including 10 bananas for £1!

WIAW – Lil’ L’s Favourite Eats of the Week

Since our return from Lanzarote a week and a half ago, I’ve been enjoying cooking some of the family’s favourite meals.  Just for a change, for this week’s WIAW party, I thought I’d ask Lil’ L to list his favourite breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert that he’s eaten since we’ve been home. 

Here’s a rundown of his favourite eats:

Breakfast – Banana Pancakes
I made a batch of these on Saturday morning and Lil’ L had them for breakfast on both Saturday and Sunday. These are his number one favourite pancakes.  I’ve recently updated the recipe to bring it into line with my other pancake recipes. They are so simple to make; you just throw all the ingredients into the blender and pulse it a few times.

At the weekend, we topped the pancakes with chopped pecans, walnuts, sliced almonds, ground linseed and a drizzle of agave syrup

Lunch – Scrambled Tofu Pitta Pocket
Since returning from our holidays, we’ve been on a mission to liven up lunch boxes.  Lil’ L mentioned that he would love to try scrambled tofu in a pitta bread for his school lunch.  On Sunday, we made scrambled tofu on toast for our lunch and then saved some for packed lunches on Tuesday. 

This time round, in addition to the tofu and spices, we added a few veggies – finely chopped red onion, red pepper, sliced mushrooms and flat leaf parsley.

Lil’ L absolutely loved the scrambled tofu pitta pocket and said it was one of the best packed lunches he’s ever had.  We’ll definitely be making this one again!

Dinner – Home-made Pizza, Mexican Fajitas & Vegetable Korma
Lil’ L had difficulty choosing one favourite dinner as we’ve had three of his favourites this week, so he asked whether I could feature all three. 

On Sunday we had the home made ‘confetti’ pizza (which we ate whilst watching the very bizarre film ‘Coraline’)

On Monday, we had Mexican veggie fajitas.  This dinner only takes 8 minutes to make!  It’s perfect for Monday nights when Lil’ L has to eat an early dinner before cubs. 

To make them, I stir fried bell  peppers, courgette (zucchini), mushrooms, baby corn, avocado, julienned carrot sticks, roasted broccoli (a left over from the weekend) and pumpkin seeds in a little oil and a sprinkling of fajita spice mix. I also added half a packet of Fry’s Vegetarian Chunky Strips (bought from Holland and Barratt).  We served them in warmed tortillas, and M and I chose to spice ours up with a drizzle of Linghams Chilli Sauce.  Delicious!

Yesterday, my mum came to visit us for the night, so we decided to cook one of the family’s current favourite meals – Veggie Korma with home made chapattis.  This time round, we used 7 different vegetables in the curry – red onion, garlic, celery, carrot, parsnip, savoy cabbage, and mushrooms, along with cashew nuts and sliced almonds.  Lil’ L enjoyed it so much that he asked for seconds!

Dessert – Chocolate Banana Chia Pudding
This was our dessert from Monday night.  Another really simple recipe which takes about a minute to prepare, providing that you’ve remembered to pre-soak the chia seeds.

It’s been another week of great eats 🙂  We’ve had lots of old family favourites  and I’ve also been trialling some new recipes which I’m looking forward to sharing with you…. especially the home made veggie pasties, which are totally lush!  

Right, time to head over to the WIAW party to check out this week’s delicious eats.   Thanks as always to the lovely Jenn for hosting this great event.  I hope to see you there! 🙂 xx