Do you ever have the feeling that you are in a book, or in a movie? I'm sure that you do, at least once in a while. I find that it happens to me most often when it rains. Maya, how many times are you going to talk about rain in these posts *sigh* Yes, I know, maybe I am a little obsessed... *cough* OKAY, maybe more than a little?? But really, I think this is the reason. I am about to explain. I promise. Rainy days are THE THING that make me feel the most nostalgic and dreamy. This day is a perfect example. It was a beautiful thunderstorm. The sky was a deep grey and the rain poured down in bursts drenching everything. Then, the coolest thing happened. The rain let up and just for a few moments while the sky was still dark, the light became this intense force of brightness. Everything looked like a jewel but under the cover of the twisty, storming clouds. It was pure magic. I pulled on my wooliest socks and biked out to get some groceries. Of course, I ended up getting soaked and muddy, but my feet stayed cozy and it made everything just so perfect.
I think I promised an explanation for nostalgia and then promptly got lost in... Well, nostalgia. What I was going to say though is that rain is one of those movie romance moments that is actually achievable in real life (even better in real life, I would argue). Rain (as long as you are not caught in it at an inopportune moment) makes the world glisten and makes everything feel cozier and more intimate. I just love every second of it!
I made these pancakes on a rainy morning (duh). I feel like I should be honest though, it was definitely not a dreamy romantic perfect time. I started the recipe at about 8am. I was supposed to work at 11am. I thought that I would have plenty of time, except I didn't account for an entirely failed first attempt. Basically, this little adventure culminated with me pulling on one sock with pancake falling out of my mouth and the lens cap tucked under my chin as I raced out of the house. But I promise that I have perfected them now so you will not be rushing half dressed out of your home with maple syrup dribbling down your chin! Make these on a perfectly rainy day and just soak up all of that sappy romance ;)
Vanilla Chai Strawberry Pancakes
Serves 2 - 3
For a gluten free version of this recipe simply substitute the 1 cup of spelt flour for 1/2 cup chickpea four and 1/2 cup oat flour (from GF oats). It works out beautifully!
- 1 cup spelt flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup almondmilk* + 2 tsp loose leaf chai tea
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla
- optional add in: 3 - 4 strawberries cut into tiny little pieces
Heat almondmilk to a light simmer (but do not let it boil) and remove from heat. Stir in the chai tea and steep for 5 - 10 minutes. In the meantime whisk together spelt flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside.
Once the tea is fully steeped in the almondmilk strain it into a small bowl or glass measuring cup (if there are loose leaf tea remnants in the milk that is okay). Stir the coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla into the warm almondmilk. Mix until coconut oil is fully melted. Pour the almondmilk mixture into the flour mixture and stir until just combined. Add in the strawberries.
Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat and coat lightly with coconut oil. Once the skillet is hot** drop 2 tbsp worth of batter onto the skillet. Pancakes are ready to be flipped when you can see the edges bubbling (approximately 2 minutes on the first side and 1 on the second side).
Serve hot with plenty of maple syrup and strawberries!
*I used unsweetened vanilla almondmilk for this recipe which adds to the delicious vanillay flavour, but any kind of plant based (or regular) milk will work
** you can tell that a pan is hot enough to cook in by flicking a few drops of water onto the hot pan. If it hisses and steams a little, it is hot enough
- Maya :)