“I thought it was a new twist to Christmas leftovers, Pinkie,” but it turns out others already thought of it – squash pancakes.”
Pinkie and her friend are contemplating a small pile of butternut squash. Volunteers that grew over the little potato patch and, thanks to the extended summer season, managed to produce a dozen ripe specimens. The area in question was just 10 by 15 feet in size.
Between the squash and taters ,more than 120 pounds was harvested, divided roughly equally between the two crops. Similar to what a commercial grower might expect but Pinkie’s friend was not about to brag.
“I figure the taters will run out by the end of January or so Pinkie, but the squash will take a little creative oomph.”
“I do like my squash,” Pinkie says. “I usually split it in two, bake it in the oven, cut side down, and once it’s soft, scoop out the innards. Of course, you need to remove the seeds before baking. Then just mash it up, with a bit of salt, pepper and some butter.”
“That’s among the healthiest options, Pinkie, but on special occasions I like to add some brown sugar or, better yet, maple syrup. It’s the maple syrup that gave me the idea for the pancakes.”
Pinkie looks over the squash and glances my way with that expectant look she sometimes carries, a cross between a yawn and a question.
“Yes Pinkie, I will elaborate.”
“Start with any leftover squash. I imagine you’ll have some on Boxing Day. It doesn’t take a lot, unless you still have a small army to feed.
“I mix the squash with stone-ground wheat flour at around a 50-50 ratio, mixing in a bit of baking powder – you don’t need a lot. Then I add a well-beaten egg or two, and some milk, enough that the batter will pour fairly easily. Then you just melt a bit of butter in a non-stick frying pan and cook as usual.”
“By usual, you mean low to medium heat and flip when air bubbles begin to appear?”
“That’s right Pinkie. Shouldn’t take too long in the pan. Serve them with some maple syrup and you will have a super vegetable, milk and complex carbohydrates for a healthy start to your day.”
“You mentioned recipes on line, not that I doubt your expertise, but what are some of the other options?” Pinkie asks.
“Well Pinkie, I didn’t see any recipes using stoneground flour – usually white is listed. Beyond that, it’s a matter of adding spices, things like cinnamon and nutmeg or, if you going for a savory flavour, you might take a look at Anupy Singla’s book, The Indian Slow Cooker.
“It doesn’t include a recipe for pancakes but does have a squash recipe with cumin, fenugreek, cardamom – one of my favourites – cinnamon and several other spices among the ingredients. It’s usually served with roti or naan but if there’s any left over, why not make some pancakes?” ◊