Friday, 1 July 2016

Grain-free banana pancakes

 We've had a big change in our diet recently as we have started following  tooth healing principles in an attempt to help Ollie's enamel hypoplasia (very frustrating and upsetting that he has dental problems given that we had what we thought was a super healthy diet and the kids have never been given much sugar).  I'll do a more thorough post on this another time, when I have time to collate the information sources that I read.  I'm neither a doctor, a dentist nor a nutritionist, so anything here is just a comment on something we're trying, not a recommendation for anyone else to change their normal diet without thorough research of their own.  Many of the elements of what we're doing would fit with what may be the more familiar paleo diet.

One element of the diet is a big reduction in the quantity of seeds we were consuming - which includes nuts, grains and pulses, plus virtually no sugar which includes fruit sugars.  This left breakfast being potentially tricky as our usual fare was porridge, cereal or toast followed by a big fruit snack plate.

I found a few recipes for pancakes (American style rather than crepes) which used just eggs and bananas, but I found this batter very runny and prone to become banana flavoured scrambled eggs.  With a bit of playing around I developed the recipe below, which is so delicious the kids even ask for it on 'treat day' - the day of the week they are allowed to have grainy treats like toast and pasta.

You can make it by mashing the banana and hand whisking the ingredients, but we have a blender so we use that.  It is easy for the kids to make and produces a lovely smooth batter.  We use coconut flour, but if you could substitute for any flour if you're not avoiding grains, for example buckwheat if you're gluten free, or regular flour if not.



For three people we use:
3 eggs (large, or 4 is small)
2 medium bananas
1 tablespoon coconut flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon

I've tried it with and without bicarb too, but find it makes little difference, so I leave it out now.

Blend it all up and use one dessertspoon of batter per pancake.  I have two pans on the go and fit 3 or 4 pancakes in each pan to speed things up, but a hot plate would be ideal if you have one.  I use cold pressed rapeseed oil (canola) but coconut oil is good too.  You have to watch the heat as the banana content can cause rapid burning, and it takes a bit of practice to get the pancakes to be set on top enough to turn over without burning them underneath.

Serve with a knob of grass fed butter (if you're in the UK that's just regular UK produced butter since we are currently not plagued by factory farmed milk).  On the day I took the photo below we also served it with blackberries and home made sugar-free jam (made using xylitol, recipe for that another time).

To keep the kids filled up for a couple of hours, I follow this up with plain full fat yoghurt with a teaspoon of our sugar-free jam, or sometimes honey or maple syrup.


We have followed the diet for a full calendar month now, and while we won't know until the next 6 monthly dental check up if there has been a measurable difference in Ollie's teeth, our own observations are that my gums and teeth feel in better condition, Ollie says his teeth don't hurt any more (this could be a placebo effect, we won't know until the dentist looks at him), and I have lost 7lbs while being less hungry, so who knows, we are tentatively hopeful that this may be a helpful change.  If not, it's certainly a tasty change.

Note: the misty effect on the pics isn't a camera filter attempting to make my kitchen look tidier or the food look mystical. I think it was a fingerprint on the phone lens :)