Cinnamon Buckwheat Pancakes with Blueberry Syrup and Caramelized Bananas

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An update on an old blog recipe from 2014! These pancakes are fluffy, comforting and filling. Buckwheat is a great whole grain, fibre packed, gluten free flour. It has a rich nutty flavour and is packed with protein and calcium. If you are not gluten intolerant, feel free to mix buckwheat flour with another flour of your choice to lessen the buckwheat flavour. Also these can be made vegan by substituting the egg with a flax or chia eggs (1 tbsp flax or chia to 3 tbsp water…resting in the fridge for at least 15 minutes). I sweetened the batter of these pancakes with coconut sugar which is a really tasty brown coloured sugar made naturally from coconuts. Unlike regular table sugar, coconut sugar contains iron, zinc, calcium and potassium. It also contains the fibre inulin, which slows glucose absorption which will help stabilize blood sugar and keep you fuller, longer.
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Ingredients:

• 2 ripe bananas
• 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
• 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
• 1 egg
• 1 cup buckwheat flour
• 1 tsp baking powder
• 3 tbsp coconut sugar plus extra for sprinkling on caramelized bananas
• 1 tbsp cinnamon
• pinch salt
• coconut oil, ghee, or avocado oil for frying
• 1 cup blueberries
• 2 tbsp pure maple syrup

Directions:

1. Mash one banana in a bowl with a fork until minimal chunks remain. Add almond milk, vanilla, and egg. Whisk until combined.

2. In another bowl, mix buckwheat flour, baking powder, coconut sugar, cinnamon, and salt.

3. All at once, add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Place batter aside.

4.For the caramelized bananas heat 1 tbsp of coconut oil on medium-hight. Slice bananas thinly and coat in coconut sugar. Fry on each side for about 4-5 minutes or until golden. Place on a plate.

5.Preheat skillet on medium heat with about a tbsp of oil. Ladle desired amount of batter in the skillet and using the back of your spoon, form into circles. Cook until surface begins to bubble, then flip and cook on the opposite side for another 30 seconds. Transfer the cooked pancakes to a baking sheet and place in a preheated 200 degree Fahrenheit oven to keep warm. Add more coconut oil if needed to skillet so the pancakes do not stick.

6. While the pancakes are cooking, place blueberries and maple syrup in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and allow to cook until until blueberries have bursted and cooked down, approx. 6-7 minutes.
Buckwheat Pancakes

Dill and Lemon Chicken Salad

Chicken Salad
Lots of you have been asking for easy make ahead options for lunch and dinner. Meal prepping on a Sunday is always a great idea, and this chicken salad is a great filling protein to add to any vegetable salad, sweet potato or sandwich. I even love it with some baked squash and steamed broccoli! If chicken isn’t your thing, try it with fork mashed chickpeas!

Another great tip… if you want to skip out on poaching your own chicken, make use of leftover roasted chicken or chicken from making stock. Another quick weeknight tip, buy a rotisserie chicken from your favourite store. I do find the chicken salad tastes best after the flavours have marinated in the fridge overnight!

Serves 6

Ingredients:

• 2 tbsp avocado oil mayonnaise, I like Chosen Foods brand
• 1 tbsp yellow or dijon mustard
• juice of 1 lemon
• 2 celery stalks, 1/4 inch dice (about 1/4 cup)
• 3 scallions, finely chopped (about 3 tbsp)
• 2 tbsp fresh dill, chopped
• 3 tbsp kosher dill pickle, finely chopped
• salt and pepper, to taste
• Cooked chicken

Poached Chicken Ingredients:

• 4 skinless boneless organic chicken breasts
• 1 lemon sliced
• 1 tsp sea salt
• 2 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
• 1 bay leaf
• 4 peppercorns
• 1 small yellow onion, sliced
• 10 sprigs fresh dill
• broth or water to cover

Directions:

1. In a sauce pan add all ingredients for your poached chicken. Cover either with broth or water until there is liquid at least 1/2 inch above the ingredients. Bring to a boil then cover and lower heat to a simmer. Poach the chicken for 20 minutes or until cooked through. Remove pan from the heat, uncover and allow to cool in the pot for 25-30 minutes. Once cooled, pull the chicken with your fingers or a fork.

2. In a large bowl, whisk together mayo, mustard, and lemon juice until combined. Add the remaining ingredients. Mix in your pulled chicken breast and season with salt and pepper. For a tangier chicken salad add more mustard and lemon juice. For a more fresh flavour add more dill.

Serving suggestions
• Over a vegetable salad with a balsamic vinaigrette
• Romaine leaves, hummus, avocado and extra mustard
• Inside a baked sweet potato with steamed kale
• With coleslaw, crackers, and cut up vegetables
• Make a sandwich using my healthiest bread ever, with a side salad

Vegan Lemon Garlic Pasta

Vegan Lemon Garlic Pasta
This pasta has become a weekly staple for a few months now. Zach (my husband, if you’re a new reader) does not love pasta because he feels very full and heavy from it. This is actually a common symptom amongst most people as added cheese, starches, and fats leave you feeling slightly sick and ready for a nap. So, with added protein in the pasta itself, I didn’t have to add a meat or cream sauce. We have been loving GoGo Quinoa’s Super Grain Pasta (find it at Costco), or as always, pastas with lentils and chickpeas as the only ingredients. The key to this vegan pasta dish is the cooking water from the pasta. The starches left in the water create a creamy sauce without any added dairy.

In 30 minutes you have a light pasta dish that is full of nutrients, protein and is of course, delicious. Feel free to use whatever vegetables you have on hand. I hope you love it as much as we do!

Serves 4

Ingredients:

• 3 cups GoGo Quinoa Super Grain Pasta
• 1 cup reserved cooking water from pasta
• 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
• pinch of chilli flakes
• 1 tsp dried oregano
• 1 french shallot, finely chopped
• 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
• 1 cup cherry tomatoes
• 1 bell pepper, julienned
• 1 zucchini, diced
• 5 stalks broccolini
• a large handful of fresh spinach
• 1 french shallot, finely chopped
• 3 tbsp parsley and/or basil, chopped
• juice of 1 lemon
• salt and pepper, to taste
• 1/4 cup toasted pinenuts

Directions:

1. Cook pasta according to directions. Remember to reserve 1 cup of the cooking liquid after the pasta is finished.

2. While the pasta is cooking, prepare all of your vegetables and herbs.

3. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Saute shallots, oregano, chilli peppers, and a pinch of salt and allow to cook for 2 minutes, then add garlic and cook for another 30 seconds. Add your cherry tomatoes and bell pepper. And add about 3 tbsp of the reserved cooking liquid so that the tomatoes steam and the garlic does not burn. Allow to cook for about 5 minutes.

4. Add your zucchini, cook for another 3 minutes. Then add the broccolini and another 1/4 cup of the pasta water. Cook until the broccolini is tender and the tomatoes have begun to burst.

5. Once the vegetables are cooked through, reduce the heat to low and add the pasta to the skillet along with the rest of the reserved cooking liquid. If your skillet is too small to add the pasta, transfer everything into the larger pot you cooked your pasta in. Stir the vegetables, pasta and cooking liquid until the pasta becomes creamy and no water is left. Add your lemon juice and spinach. Taste and season if necessary. The salt from the pasta water might mean you don’t need to add any salt.

6. Serve pasta and top with toasted pinenuts, fresh parsley, more freshly cracked pepper and a drizzle of your best olive oil. Bon appetit!

Vegan Lemon Garlic Pasta

*This is a sponsored post, all opinions are my own.