Savoury Pancakes with Garlic Mushrooms
Savoury Pancakes are a fantastic make-ahead vegetarian supper. In this recipe, I have made a simple filling of garlic-flavoured mushrooms and have included some fresh chives in the pancake batter. The pancakes are rolled around the filling, topped with grated cheese and then heated through in the oven. The finished dish is a bit like a baked pasta dish – lasagne or cannelloni – but using pancakes make it less heavy. The other advantage of using pancakes rather than pasta is that you can put additional flavourings, such as the chives, into the batter.
I love all kinds of pancakes – both sweet and savoury. They are so quick and easy to make and so versatile. You get an almost instant hit of that “home-baked” satisfaction! When it comes to sweet pancakes or crepes, I have very traditional tastes – lemon and sugar is the only topping that I like – but I am a bit more flexible when it comes to savoury pancakes. If mushrooms are not your thing you could try ricotta and spinach or vegetarian or meat-based bolognese sauce.
Mushrooms, lovely mushrooms…
I am a huge mushroom lover. There is something about mushrooms, a savoury almost meaty flavour, which seems to please both vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike. As I cater to a household with a range of food preferences, I tend to use a lot of mushrooms! In my recipes, you can pretty much use any type of mushroom, or combination of mushrooms, that you happen to have available. However, there are a few rules of mushroom cooking that I think are worth bearing in mind.
- First off, generally the larger the mushroom, the stronger the flavour. If you want a milder mushroom taste, stick to button mushrooms.
- Secondly, make sure your mushrooms are fresh and perky. No one (and really, I mean no one) likes a slimy mushroom that has been sitting in your fridge for a couple of weeks. If you are going to keep your mushrooms for a few days, make sure that they can “breathe” – if they are wrapped in plastic, remove the covering.
- Thirdly, (with reference to my second point), do not over-cook your mushrooms. They need to be cooked through and firm with a bit of a bite not sad, flaccid things which have been stewed for hours.
- And finally, make sure you season them well – with salt and pepper and any herbs and spices that your like – in order to bring out their flavour. No one likes a bland mushroom. I think garlic is a particular friend to all types of mushrooms but they also go well with thyme and nutmeg.
These savoury pancakes, filled with garlic mushrooms topped with sour cream and chives, are the perfect vegetarian supper.
For the filling
- 2 onions
- 50 g butter
- 475 g mushrooms (I generally use chestnut mushrooms but you can use any sort)
- 2 cloves of garlic
- Salt and pepper
For the pancakes
- 100 g plain flour
- 1 egg
- 275 ml milk
- Salt and pepper
- Fresh chives
- A little vegetable oil
- A little butter
- 150 ml sour cream
- 100 g strong cheese (eg cheddar)
- First make the garlic mushroom filling as follows.
- Peel and chop the onion. Heat the butter in a heavy-based pan, add the chopped onion and cook gently for 10 minutes until it is soft and golden.
- While the onion is cooking, remove the stalks from the mushrooms and chop them finely. Slice the mushroom caps.
- After 10 minutes, peel and crush the garlic and add it to the pan together with the chopped and sliced mushrooms. Cook for a further 5 minutes and then take off the heat and set aside.
- Next make the pancakes as follows.
- Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre and break the egg into it. Stir the mixture and gradually incorporate the flour with the egg. Then gradually add the milk and stir until all the flour is combined with it. You will then have a thin batter with the consistency of double cream. Season with salt and pepper. Finely chop the fresh chives and add them to the batter.
- Heat a little vegetable oil in a heavy-based non-stick frying pan. Then, using a ladle or large spoon, pour a portion of the batter into the pan. Tip the pan so that it covers all of the base. Leave to cook for around four minutes. Then using a spatula or blunt knife, flip the pancake over to cook the other side and allow to cook for a further minute. Then slide the pancake onto a plate. Repeat until you have used all the batter. There should be enough to make six medium-sized pancakes.
- At this point, you have a choice. Either you can simply put a tablespoonful of the mushroom mixture on top of each pancake, add a teaspoon of sour cream and a few chopped chives, roll up the pancake and eat it as it is. Or you can put the filled pancakes into a greased, oven-proof dish, top with grated cheese and bake in the oven set at 180 C (400 F or Gas Mark 4) for 10 minutes. If you are eating them immediately, I would recommend the former and if you are making them ahead, I would recommend the latter.
Keywords: pancakes, savoury, mushrooms, garlic, vegetarian, supper