Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Review: Crepes, Waffles and Pancakes!

Breakfast food is some of my favorite food. That's not to say that breakfast is my favorite meal of the day; I love to have breakfast-type foods for lunch and dinner too. But I always seem to cook the same things over and over; not a lot of different sorts of breakfast foods to be had. So while I was excited to be offered the chance to review Crepes, Waffles and Pancakes! by Kathryn Hawkins, I wondered how much variety there could possibly be in the book.

Tex Mex Style Chicken Waffles (Sizzling) pg 53.

Well, I was proven wrong. Very wrong. Kathryn's book is loaded with easy, fun and most importantly, delicious recipes for meals any time of day.

You would be hard pressed not to find recipes in here that aren't of interest to someone. All aspects of pancakes waffles and crepes are covered in this book. In addition to the standard pancakes and waffles that are perfect for breakfast and brunch, there are some downright fancy dishes, savory dishes, desserts, snacks and lots of relishes and sauces to go along.

Deep Pan Bacon and Apple Pancakes (Salty sweet) pg 36.

My very favorite thing about the book is this: in every recipe, under the title is a one or two word description of the dish. I totally love that, and it became the tool I used to try out recipes in the book. Some examples: The Deep Fried Mincemeat Pancake Pockets? Christmassy. The Cornmeal and Paprika Griddle Cakes? Smoky. Spiced Chickpea Pancakes with Eggplant and Coconut Curry? Inspirational. Just a clever idea and a welcome addition to the book.

Chickpea and Sweet Corn Cheese Cakes (Cheesy) pg 145.

The first section of the book is divided into 4 parts - an Introduction, with some interesting information on crepes, waffles and pancakes; Important Ingredients, which covers some of the different sorts of flours and liquids and seasonings used in the book; Equipment - the sorts of pans and appliances that will come in handy; and The Perfect Batter which covers basic batters for pancakes, crepes and waffles as well as storing tips and serving suggestions. All of these are informative and well thought out.

French Galettes (Continental) pg 89.

The rest of the book is divided into 6 chapters: Breakfast and Brunch, Main Meals, Specialty, Desserts, Snacks, and Accompaniments. All recipes are clear in their instructions and are easy to follow. There truly is something for everyone here - many recipes are vegetarian, or have suggestions to make them so. There are some Gluten-free recipes as well, and suggestions on alternatives to milk that can be used for those who are lactose intolerant.

The only roadblock for me were some of the different types of flour. I did have some difficulty in that, but for most recipes another type of flour could be substituted. When I was trying out recipes I could not find Buckwheat flour, Chickpea flour or Teff. I simply substituted what I could find and none of the recipes suffered. If you have access to well stock food stores or an online supplier, you will be in heaven.

Crepes, Waffles and Pancakes! by Kathryn Hawkins.
Published by Good Books.

Lemon Meringue Waffles (Tangy) pg 123.
From Crepes, Waffles and Pancakes! by Kathryn Hawkins

Serves 6.

1/2 quantity Basic Waffle Batter (recipe follows)
1 tsp finely grated lemon rind
6 tb greek or whole milk yogurt
6 tb lemon curd
6 small meringues, lightly crushed
mint leaves to garnish

Prepare the half quantity of waffle batter, adding the lemon rind to the batter. Cook the waffles and keep them warm until you are ready to serve.

To serve, gently swirl the yogurt and lemon curd together and spoon on top of the waffles. Sprinkle with crushed meringues and decorate with mint leaves.

Basic Waffle Batter

makes 12 waffles

2 cups plain flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tb extra fine sugar (optional)
1 egg, separated
1 1/4 cups milk
1/4 stick (30g) unsalted butter, melted

Prepare and preheat the waffle iron or waffle machine as directed. Combine the flour with the baking soda, salt and sugar, if using, in a bowl and make a well in the centre. Add the egg yolk and milk and gradually work into the flour using a whisk. Beat gently until smooth. Carefully stir in the melted butter.

In a grease free bowl, whisk the egg white until stiff and carefully fold into the batter using a large metal spoon.

Pour over enough batter, to ensure that the moulded surface of the lower plates are covered sufficiently (about 3 tb). Close lid and cook until the waffles are done. Remove to a plate, keep warm, and continue making waffles with the rest of the batter.


Brilynn said...

I'm surprised of the variety as well! That lemon meringue waffle looks especially appealing!

Kristen said...

Who knew that there were so many different ways to make breakfast food? Fascinating!

My kids love it when we have breakfast for dinner. They get so excited about everything being "Backwards!"

peasantwench said...

Superstore sells chickpea flour if you ever want to try it. I think it's called besan...

Everything looks so tasty!

Rachel said...

I am going to see if my library has this! It looks great! Thanks.

The Cookbook Junkie said...

I thought I left a comment earlier?!

This cookbook has been on my radar and I'm definitely going to pick it up now. My husband loves waffles.

peabody said...

I'm coming to your house for breakfast.

Lis said...

I'll be riding along with Peabody - so set the table for us!

Every recipe you chose to highlight sounds and looks wonderful.. I can't decide which one I like better - although that deep pan bacon and apple one is calling to me...

I'll be on the look out for this book - most definitely! "Ohhhh Sannntttaaaaaaa Claussssss..."

Sara said...

Brilynn - there was so much variety! It's one of my favorite books right now.

Kristen - I'm with them, it's fun to switch it up now and then.

PW - I found some last week at Community, but thanks for letting me know, Superstore is alot closer to my house.

Rachel - I hope you find it, you'll love it.

CJ - you will too!

Peabody and Lis - I'll set the table.

Ruth Daniels said...

I too couldn't figure out how one could do an entire book on crepes and pancakes. I particularly loved the buckwheat crepes - introduced me to a whole new way to prepare healthful versions!