Oct 9, 2011

Buckwheat & Banana Flour Pancakes with Video!

It's VeganMoFo Sunday and it's time for some gluten free, oil free pancakes!

Off late for no rhyme or reason I have been trying a gluten free diet. It basically means I avoid anything with wheat and it's relatives. Here, even though wheat is such a major part of the diet, it's not that difficult to avoid. I have no signs or symptoms of any intolerance or allergy, but every once in a while I like to give myself some challenges.

It's very easy when you're cooking for yourself and also becomes easier if you are chosen for a trial for a new vegan lunch service for one whole week and their lunches are wheat free! What fun. I enjoyed the dabbawala delivered lunches for a week, but sadly that was only lunch.

Living in a Gujrati dominated suburb of Bombay has it's advantages. During the months when people are fasting most of the days, all these incredible non wheat flours suddenly come into the grocery stores. I always tend to bend towards the unknown and so I pick stuff that I wouldn't normally use. On one such pit stop I found Banana Flour. Banana Flour is common in the south of India. It is made out of dried raw bananas and thus is very starchy. It is made into a porridge and fed to babies who are just beginning to eat. I just bought it not knowing what to do with it.

I have been wanting to make wheat free pancakes for the longest time. I had a whole pack of lovely Organic Buckwheat Flour (another 'fasting' flour, also called kuttu, kutti) which is so commonly used in gluten free baking. I mixed in some Banana Flour and made lovely sugar-free, oil-free pancakes with them. These pancakes are super healthy, super fluffy and super tasty.

This post if specially for Harini, who is such an inspiration with her lovely personality, amazing food and tasty photos! She is specially trying to cook up gluten free stuff for her daughter and this would be a perfect Sunday morning breakfast for her!

I made a short time lapse video of how I made the pancakes which you will find at the end of this post!

You need:

1 cup Buckwheat Flour
1/2 cup Banana Flour
A pinch of baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tablespoon Date Syrup or any sweetener of your choice.
1 tsp vinegar
1 tablespoon Flax meal
1 tsp Vanilla Essence or One Vanilla Bean scraped

(These pancakes are not sweet at all. If you like your pancakes sweet, add more date syrup and reduce the water added to the batter)

Mix the flaxmeal with 2 tbsp water and set aside for 10 minutes. In a big bowl mix the Buckwheat Flour, Banana Flour, Baking soda and salt.

After ten minutes, the flax meal-water mixture would've become a stiff, thick, gooey mix. Make a well in the center of the flours and add this flax mixture, vinegar and vanilla. Add water and start stirring it till you get a nice thick meal. When you pull up the mixture with your spoon and drop it in, it should be stringy like in the picture below.

On a hot iron tawa/pan (I don't use non-stick stuff) put about 1/2 a teaspoon of oil and spread it around. Put a small spoonful of this pancake mixture in it and let it cook on one side. This is the way we usually start making doasas at home. We put a small amount of the dough/batter on a hot pan and let it cook on both sides before we start making the actual dosa/uttappam/ pancake. I guess it makes sure the tawa is evenly heated and if done properly, you don't need any oil for the rest of the dosas/ pancakes, etc. Of course this also depends on your batter, but this worked very well for these pancakes.

So just dab a nice big spoonful of the batter, spread it around quickly and carefully to about 1/2 inch thick and let the heat do the magic. Turn it over after about 20 seconds and let the other side cook. Drizzle with date syrup, add a few bananas or whatever fruits you fancy and enjoy them hot.

Don't forget to watch the video!


  1. Hi Rithika, the pancakes look so good! I've never had banana flour before, I should find out what its called in tamil. I too enjoy trying out gluten free recipes when I get the chance even though I am not gluten intolerant. I read somewhere thats it does give the body a break! Oh, I am not able to view the video as its marked private.

  2. Hi Niru!

    Thanks for that I forgot to make the video public. It is now, so you can check it out!

    I know that keralites use banana flour a lot, so may be you should ask someone from kerala also.

    And ya I did try going gluten free for a week and it feel pretty good.

  3. Hey, thank you so much! I use banana powder a lot too. Like you mentioned I started using it when my daughter was young. We love the porridge a lot even now! It works great for banana bread too.

    The pancakes look delicious and I will try making this soon, after getting back from the Bangalore break.:)

  4. I must take the porridge recipe from you. :) Hope you're having fun in Bangalore!


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