Guys, I’m kind of sniffly and head-full-of-gross-stuff this week, so a posting of my contribution for the Toronto Vegetarian Association October newsletter will have to do. And by “will have to do,” I actually mean “is an unbelievably awesome addition that you’ll love.” Added bonus: I’ve linked to a few of my Thanksgiving-appropriate recipes at the end for all of you Canadians celebrating this weekend. Big hearts to you all.
Have you tried a dirty masala chai? I’m a recent convert to this indulgent drink. It’s a cinnamon-y and creamy masala chai latte with a shot of espresso added. It’s complex, warming, lightly sweet, still spicy and shot through with extra caffeine for good measure.
Once I’m jazzed on something I usually can’t leave it alone, so naturally I had to make a pancake version of this beverage. The batter itself is hearty with spelt flour and strong with coffee, spice and vanilla. Best part: I decided to blanket them in a cranberry compote tweaked with maple syrup. It adds a sweet-tart dimension that fits these pancakes so well. So much fall on one plate. If you have it around, you could swap in some leftover cranberry sauce instead of making up a whole batch of separate compote if you like.
I’ll be sipping some ginger tea over here and snuggling in. Make some pancakes and have a cozy and warm Thanksgiving friends. I’ll be back with something more ambitious next week.
Dirty Masala Chai Pancakes with Cranberry Vanilla Compote
- 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
- ⅓ cup water
- ¼ cup maple syrup. plus extra
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 ⅓ cups non-dairy milk
- 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
- ¾ cup whole spelt flour
- ½ cup light spelt flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 teaspoon coffee extract (or 1 tablespoon finely ground coffee)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil, plus extra
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Make the compote: place the cranberries, water and maple syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring frequently. Add water as needed to keep the sauce moist. Mash the cranberries up here and there with the back of a wooden spoon to get a saucy consistency. Once you have a slightly wet, jammy texture, add the vanilla extract. Stir up the compote one more time and remove from the heat. Set aside.
- Combine the non-dairy milk and apple cider vinegar in a liquid measuring cup. Stir lightly and set aside to curdle for at least 5 minutes.
- In a large bowl, combine the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground coffee, cinnamon, ground ginger, cardamom, nutmeg and cloves. Stir to combine. Add the curdled non-dairy milk, maple syrup, coconut oil and vanilla extract. Stir gently to combine, taking care not to over mix.
- Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Brush the pan with melted coconut oil. Drop ⅓ cup measures of the pancake batter into the pan. Allow the first side to cook for 1 to 1½ minutes, or until bubbles pop on the surface and the edges appear dry and lightly browned. Flip the pancakes over and cook for another minute. Remove pancakes and keep warm. Repeat with remaining batter.
- Serve pancakes with cranberry compote spooned over the top and extra maple syrup if you like.