The happiest Tuesday of the year involves pancakes and lots of them.
Did you know that the name Shrove Tuesday comes from ‘shrive’, meaning absolution for sins by doing penance.
The day gets its name from the tradition of Christians trying to be ‘shriven’ before Lent. Christians would go to Confession, where they admit their sins to a priest and ask for absolution. A bell would be rung to call them to Confession, which was called the ‘pancake bell’. It’s still rung today in some churches.
Over in the United States it’s called Mardi Gras aka ‘Fat Tuesday’ in French because it’s the last opportunity to use up the fatty foods before Lent.
Pancake Day itself came much later as a way of using up rich foods, like eggs, milk and sugar before the 40 days of fasting – Lent .
We have a fabulous carb free, 4 ingredient recipe for Banana Pancakes which is lifted from our cookbook Deliciously Healthy.
Also included is a recipe for traditional pancakes.
So, whether you like them American or French style, we have you covered.
2 mashed bananas
½ tsp. vanilla essence
½ tsp. cinnamon
1. Mash your banana with a fork. In another bowl whisk the eggs. Mix the eggs and banana together, add ½ tsp of vanilla essence and the cinnamon if desired.
2. Spray a pan with low calorie cooking spray on a low-medium heat. Add a two euro sized amount of batter to the pan, let it set for 30 seconds or until the centre bubbles and then flip it.
Top Tip: Banana pancakes can be awkward to flip and can quite often end up looking like a scrambled mess. If you would like to make one larger pan sized pancake pour one quarter of the mixture into the pan on a very low heat. Cook for 2-3 mins and/ or when it starts to bubble on top take the pan off the hob and finish it off under the grill for 1 minute on a low heat. Your pancake should slide off the pan and onto your plate. Enjoy these pancakes on their own or with berries and a sprinkle of sweetener.
Traditional French Crepes
Fat 1 1/2
110g plain flour
pinch of salt
2 large eggs
200ml full fat milk
1. Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl with the sieve held high above the bowl so the flour gets an airing. In the centre of the flour, make a well and crack the eggs into it. Begin to whisk.
2. In a measuring jug mix the milk and water. As the egg and flour mixture starts thicken, gradually add small quantities of the milk and water mixture, still whisking continually until you have the consistency of thin cream.
3. Now melt the butter in your frying pan. When melted pour into the batter and whisk it in.
4. Now get the pan really hot, then turn the heat down to medium and, to start with, do a test pancake to see if you’re using the correct amount of batter. If yo have a soup label this is an easy way to transfer the mix to the pan for each pancake. As soon as the batter hits the pan lift it and swirl the batter from side to side so it is evenly distributed. It should take only half a minute or so to cook; you can lift the edge with a spatula to see if it’s tinged gold as it should be.
5. Flip the pancake over, the other side will need a few seconds only – then simply slide it out of the pan on to a plate. Serve sprinkled with a little stevia and lemon juice and some lemon wedges.