The other day I was flicking through my old copy of Crank’s cook book – it reminds of days when veggie restaurants were rare and the only vegetarian food you could get was in an Asian restaurant or for the quirky pure veggie experience at Govinda’s which is still flying the flag in Soho Street. Cranks closed down in the early 80s with much sadness never to be resurrected in the old, aesthetic, organic format. But I have digressed….. so ok, I was flicking through the cook book and came across buckwheat flour! Ah buckwheat flour, now that was a staple in the early days when we embraced a vegetarian lifestyle – it brought back wholesome memories of buckwheat flour in stews and buckwheat flatbread and buckwheat pancakes.
In those days there wasn’t much available by way of ready meals nor did we have any substitutes except for dried soya protein which I still use frequently. So I decided to resurrect my buckwheat flatbread or wraps (back then we didn’t know about wraps either – just simple good life people….) but I couldn’t remember the recipe – well of course I couldn’t, it was more than 30 years ago. I am also sure I didn’t use soya flour but decided to add this to my recipe for nutrition (rich in protein), moisture and take the edge off the rich, nutty, slightly bitter taste of buckwheat and made a relatively lighter flatbread. By this time I was in my cook’s element….. so I bunged in yet another flour I am sure I hadn’t used – potato flour – well you can’t go wrong with potatoes, can you and I am sure they imparted a slight spring to the bread….. hmmm? You don’t have to use soya flour but I tried without and have to say prefer the version with the soya flour.
The next challenge was to bypass the “roll the flatbread” stage….. too messy and takes time and not helpful for those with little time to cook…..so would a thick batter work? Try it yourself – it worked beautifully and not a bit stuck on the pan either. Just make sure you keep the batter thick and spread it to fit the pan with the back of a spatula or blunt knife. Eat on its own, take to lunch stuffed with hummus, salad, or dip in yogurt with chopped onion, cucumber & tomato with a good pinch of dried mint – see picture above
6 small flatbreads (using small 5 inch frying pan)
100 grams buckwheat flour
50 grams soya flour (if you don’t wish to use soya flour, increase the buckwheat to 150 grams)
50 grams potato flour
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder/granules
¼ teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon cumin powder
½ teaspoon salt
220 ml cold water
- Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl, add 220 ml of cold water and mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon until smooth. You should have a thick batter. Be careful with the water; a runny batter will produce something more like a pancake.
- In a small frying pan heat ½ tablespoon of oil (I used my small 5 inch frying pan but you could use a larger one if you wish to save time cooking!)
- Drop a heaped tablespoon of batter in the pan and quickly spread it to the edges using a spatula or blunt knife.
- Cook on low for 3 minutes on each side (6-7 minutes in total), pressing gently with the spatula. It doesn’t stick and is easy to flip over.
Add small amount of finely chopped onion and fresh parsley or coriander to the batter