breads, pancakes, and such

Zucchini and Ricotta Pancakes

  • 3 eggs

  • ½ cup ricotta

  • ¼ cup milk

  • 2 zucchini, grated (approx. 1 ½ cups)

  • 1 cup flour

  • 1 tsp baking soda

  • pinch of sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper

  • olive oil, for frying

1. Lightly whisk the eggs, ricotta, and milk in a bowl.

2. Add the grated zucchini into the batter and mix through.

3. Mix the baking soda into the flour, then whisk into the egg mixture. Season the batter with salt and pepper.

4. Heat a bit of olive oil in a frying pan and spoon small batches of the batter into the pan. Cook the pancakes for a few minutes on both sides and set aside. Continue until all the batter is used.

5. Serve the zucchini and ricotta pancakes warm with a dab of butter or sour cream.

Rhubarb Streusel Muffins

For the streusel:
6 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces

For the muffins:
1 1/2 cups small diced rhubarb
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/3 cups  flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
5 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup plain whole-milk yogurt

For the streusel:

1. Whisk flour, sugar, cardamom, and salt in a medium bowl until combined. Add butter and combine with your fingers, rubbing the butter into the flour until mostly incorporated but some small pieces remain. (The streusel is ready when it holds together in large clumps when squeezed-it will still be fairly dry.)

For the muffins:

1. Heat the oven to 375°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Coat a 12-well muffin tin with butter or line it with paper cupcake liners.
2. Toss rhubarb with 1/4 cup of the sugar in a medium bowl and set aside. Let sit until rhubarb releases some juice, about 5 minutes.
3. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cardamom in a large bowl until evenly combined. Place remaining 1/2 cup sugar, butter, egg, vanilla, and yogurt in a separate medium bowl and whisk until smooth. Add wet ingredients to dry and mix just until combined. Stir in rhubarb. (The mixture will be thick.)
4. Place batter into each muffin well and evenly sprinkle streusel over top. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove to a wire rack and let cool 15 minutes in the pan. Remove from the pan enjoy!


Tassajara Basic Wheat Bread

This recipe has the baker make a sponge first, with half of the flour.  I followed the recipe exactly, later realizing, as the sponge bubbled up and over the largest bowl I have, that it made four loaves.   Perfect for a monastery, not so perfect for my family of four.  I put one half in the fridge to make into a crap-load of breadsticks later in the week.

The sponge:

6 cups lukewarm water

2 T yeast

1/2 cup honey

2 cups dry milk (optional-I did not have on hand, so I omitted)

7-9 cups whole wheat flour

It will be like thick mud.  Beat 100 times, in a circular motion. Leave to rise, with a damp towel covering it for about an hour, or so.  I left mine for a couple hours, figuring it would improve the flavor.

2 1/2 T salt

1/2 cup olive oil or butter

6-8 cups whole wheat flour

At this point, DO NOT STIR the dough, or cut through the center.  This will defeat all the rising that has been done up until now.  Keep the dough in one piece, as much as possible.  Mix around the sides of the bowl, folding towards the center.  Add the salt and oil/butter first, incorporating as well as possible.  Then add the flour, cup by cup.  Continue folding until dough comes away from sides of the bowl.  Then take the dough to a floured surface or board and knead.  I split my dough in half, as it was too much for me to knead all at once.

After finished kneading, place into an oiled bread bowl, smooth side down.  Then turn it over, creases down.  The oiled surface will help keep a crust from forming on the top of the dough.  Cover and set in warm place for an hour or until doubled.  Punch down a few times and let rise another hour.  This last rise may be omitted if short on time.  The resulting bread will be a bit more dense though. Shape into loaves and let rise 15-25 more minutes.

Bake in a preheated oven at 350 for 50-70 minutes.

(recipe from the Tassajara Bread Book)


Ben’s Friday Pancakes

This unique pancake has no flour but uses highly digestible soaked whole grains. Adapted by Bastyr student Ronit Gourarie from Rebecca Wood’s superb cookbook The Splendid Grain (William Morrow and Company, Inc, 1997). Ronit routinely served these beauties to her son Ben every Friday.

2/3 cup steel cut oats
1/3 cup raw buckwheat groats
1/2 cup plain whole milk yogurt
¾ cup water
1 egg
¼ teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons unrefined cane sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon grated nutmeg

Combine oats, buckwheat, yogurt and water in blender jar. 1 ¼ cup milk* can also be used. Cover and let soak overnight or 6-8 hours in the refrigerator.

Put blender bowl on base. Add remaining ingredients to grains and blend until smooth. Add a little water if needed. Preheat an oiled griddle or skillet. Pour about ¼ cup batter onto griddle and cook for about 2 minutes on each side or until golden. Repeat until all batter is used. Keep finished pancakes warm in the oven while you finish.

Prep time: 15 minutes plus 8 hours soaking time
Makes 6-8 pancakes

FOR BABIES 10 MONTHS AND OLDER: Cut pancakes into small pieces and serve.

*Any milk, cow, goat, rice, soy or nut, can be used. I also like using a combination of yogurt and water to soak the grains.


Irish Soda Bread
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 cup raisins
1 egg, beaten
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons margarine, melted
1 tsp salt
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a cast iron skillet.
2. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda and sugar. Toss the raisins with the flour mixture until coated. Make a well in the center and add the egg, buttermilk, and melted margarine. Stir until all of the dry ingredients are absorbed. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for a few quick turns just to even out the dough. Handle the dough as little as possible. Pat into a flat circle, and place into the prepared pan.
3. Bake the bread for 40 to 45 minutes in the preheated oven, or until the edges are golden.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: