Soft savory pancakes of roasted aubergine, caramelized onions and summer herbs, barely held together with a whisper of flour and eggs, and served with a smear of sweet red pepper sauce. Make-ahead steps and a do-everything sauce = easy summer lunches and appetizers.
Midsummer is fast approaching. I don’t know about you but all of a sudden I feel an urge to do every summer thing: paddle boarding on tree-fringed Loch Leven; bird watching in the Pentland Hills; deadheading and weeding after supper – cheeky G&T ready for a quick sip between the never-ending garden tasks. But, I’m marooned on the sofa with a foot bound and propped for the time being.
Without being a complete bore about it, two and a bit weeks ago I took a tumble down the stairs, my stupidly clog-shod feet obscured by an overflowing laundry basket. Tore some ligaments. And before you jump to any conclusions, no alcohol was involved. 😉
This didn’t stop us going on holiday to Brač in Croatia, but back home I am feeling quite out of sorts. From my central position in our open plan downstairs I can see everything that needs sorting and putting away. Half-read newspapers; vaguely important notes scrawled on the scrappiest of scrap papers; a small heap of to-be-ironed clothes.
Worst of all, I can see the garden. Nearest to me are a brace of peonies, big bowls of pink and custard-yellow blossoms nestled with fading salmon-rose aquilegia (both needing deadheading). These summer stalwarts are punctuated by an obelisk of untied sweet peas, the intense fragrance only available if you wish to lie on the ground. The hostas too are fully up and fully prey to gungy-gross slugs, which in normal circumstances I would be “tidying up” in dawn-ish patrols – a good occupation for the occasional insomniac in the summer time.
You can perhaps feel my frustration.
I can still carry on with my cooking though. Taking things carefully and breaking down tasks, I am making food for work and testing recipes to share with family and all of you. Slowly, slowly I am washing, slicing, mixing, cooking and tidying up, a crutch at the ready. Everything proceeds at a snail’s pace.
In a way, this has been the silver lining. I can’t rush and do three things at once, worrying that I may have forgotten to add a vital ingredient: it’s added because I am present in every step.
I might yet get the hang of being methodical. Doubtful, with my ADD-brain.
This is what I have been making lately – dinky little eggplant pancakes, smeared with creamy roasted sweet red pepper sauce and topped with vinegared chickpeas and herbs, plucked from just outside my kitchen door.
I have developed a similar recipe for Waitrose that will be in their September magazine, using Duchy products to celebrate the brand’s 20th anniversary. They will be re-shooting the images to visually work with other recipes in the same section, but I’m so pleased to have been asked to create a recipe for their flagship Duchy brand. My pix will be on their social media and on their website.
Anyway, the recipe below is just for us. Have it for lunch, a light supper, or even make them smaller for an interesting take on blinis and serve as appetizers. The sauce is massively versatile: mix with cooked pasta, combine with ricotta as a stuffing for grilled vegetable roll-ups (a la involtini), mix into steamed or boiled greens, slather onto roasting cauliflower, smear onto fish, chicken or tofu and bake in the oven. The pine nuts are a must, btw.
Perhaps by the time you are reading this I will have slowly tidied my way around the room, and hirpled my way out into the back garden to do some high-level deadheading. Or maybe I will just have the cheeky G&T, sans deadheading. 😉
Mediterranean Herb Pancakes with Roasted Sweet Red Pepper Sauce
Soft savory pancakes of roasted aubergine, onion marmalade and summer herbs, barely held together with a whisper of flour and eggs, and served with a smear of sweet red pepper sauce. Make-ahead steps and a do-everything sauce = easy summer lunches and appetizers. xx
2 medium aubergines
2 red peppers
Jar of caramelised onions, divided use
50g flour (plain or chickpea/gram flour)
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp ground cumin
2 eggs, lightly beaten (I haven’t tried with chia eggs but no reason why this wouldn’t work)
80g pine nuts, lightly toasted
2 & 1/2 tsp white wine or cider vinegar, divided use
Olive oil for shallow frying
1 lemon, halved
Half a tin of chickpeas, rinsed drained and lightly patted dry
Salt and pepper, to taste
Torn fresh oregano, basil or marjoram, to serve
Feta cheese, crumbled (optional)
1. Heat oven to 200C/400F and line the bottom with foil. Prick the aubergines twice each and lay the aubergines and peppers directly on the middle oven rack. Roast the aubergines for one hour and the peppers for 40 minutes. Cool slightly.
2. Remove the skin and seeds from the peppers and set the flesh aside. Halve the aubergines, scoop out the flesh, and leave to drain for an hour in a sieve. Pulse-chop the aubergines in a blender or by hand; mix in a bowl with 2 tablespoons of the caramelised onions, the flour, dried oregano, cumin; stir in the beaten egg. Mix well but do not beat.
3. Make the sweet red pepper sauce by blending 2 tablespoons caramelised onions, the peeled peppers, 1 tsp of vinegar and 60 grams of the pine nuts in a food processor or blender* until smooth; taste and adjust seasoning. Set aside.4. To make the pancakes, heat a little oil in a large non-stick saute pan over a medium-high heat. Dollop 2 heaped tablespoons of the batter into the hot oil and spread from the center to make pancakes about four to five inches in diameter: you will need to make the pancakes in batches so pop an oven tray into a 120C (250F) oven to keep them warm. Cook pancakes on each side for about four minutes, until medium golden brown. Hold them in the oven as you make the rest.
5. For the chickpeas, add a little oil to the saute pan if needed and heat to high. Add the chickpeas and the remaining vinegar and cook until the chickpeas start to pop (yes, pop!), shaking a couple of times. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper and shake the pan again.
To serve Smear the eggplant pancakes with the red pepper puree, and top with chickpeas, remaining pine nuts, and flecks of herbs. Stack them if you wish.
Leftovers? The batter will keep well for two days and the sauce for five days (see above the recipe for how to use leftover sauce). Cooked pancakes can be reheated briefly in a hot pan, or in a moderate oven for about five minutes.
Froothie News* For this recipe I used the new 750g (single serve) jug available for the Froothie Optimum 9400 power blender. I adore this new dinky jug as it is PERFECT for smaller batches of hummus, dips, nut butters, smoothies, cocktails, sauces and nut flours. It has replaced my mini chopper for small tasks that need the power of a proper blender (i.e. everything!). It is so easy to get every last scrap out of the blender, too. No waste! Right now Froothie has a SUMMER SALE on, so do go over if you fancy an upgrade in your quality kitchen equipment. Use this link for purchases, or click on the badge in my sidebar and claim free shipping, too. Disclosure: I’m an ambassador for Froothie and receive a small payment for purchases through the above links.
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60 thoughts on “How to Make Eggplant Pancakes with Sweet Red Pepper Sauce”
These look so yummy 😋 hope you’re feeling better soon!!
Thanks, Sam. Foot is much better. I’m down to one crutch! Let me know if yu try this, or a version of it 🙂
Interesting Recipe!! looks delicious 🙂 Thank you!!!
No, thank you!
This looks amazing!
Aw, cheers! 🙂
Sorry to hear about your injury, I hope you are up and about again soon xx
I’m up and about with my one crutch, but I am so craving a country walk right now!
I feel your frustration!
(I won’t tell you that I’ve just come back from walking in my local countryside with Bob…!)
So sorry to hear about your fall. I fell at curling this year – and like you – it forced me to sort out what was important and take it moment by moment. Eating healthy does not prevent falls – argggghhhhhhhhhh so frustration isn’t it.
FOOD was definitely on the list of ways to explore my passion for cooking and trying new recipes.
That’s when I found your website and have since gone to Plant based eating – with no added oil. I love eating this way and finding recipes that support my eating style.
I know, the healthy eating should cover falls but sadly doesn’t… Regarding the pancakes and your no-oil eating, if you use spray oil this would probs work in the oven – just a different texture. 🙂
So sorry to hear about your foot Kellie. I hope you heal very quickly and can get back out to the garden! In the meantime, these pancakes look fabulous. And that red pepper sauce on top. Wow!
I’ve been out in the garden but have just done some of the “glory” work of picking beans and kale 🙂 I’m glad you like the look of this because I really really love it. You could sub in sauteed onions for the caramelised onions if you wish too (I needed to use as many Duchy things for the recipe when developing it as I could!)
Oh no Kellie! Bummer about the foot and ligaments. I can definitely sympathize and also tell you that patience is the key to healing. So give in and wait for it to get better.
Big healing hugs from Frankfurt! xox Karin
I know you can empathise, but of course, you had surgery and pins and stitches – the whole deal. It’s been a long haul for you. Mine are just some ligaments, which take ages to heal but nothing like the rigamarole of what you’ve been through. I know you were very frustrated so in comparison, mine is “small beer”. I am however craving, almost in a physical way, a very long walk in the countryside! I hope you are well, Karin. xx
How you can do all this with your injury is beyond me but I’m so glad you did as 🙂 I love the look of this colourful and flavour packed sounding recipe. Take care though, no rushing, don’t try to be super human, we know you are already 🙂 x
You are very sweet, but you have picked up on my American hyperbole! Nothing super human about me, that’s for sure! But thank you my lovely. xxx
Ooooh this looks amazing! I’m RUNNING out to buy aubergines now.
Ha ha – but don’t trip when you go! 😉
Bad luck about the foot, some years back I took a bad tumble by standing on the loo seat to dust the top of the window ledge, ended in A&E where they were sweet enough neither to laugh about me falling off the loo nor lecture me on being an idiot. Since then have worn sensible house shoes and used the kitchen steps, it is just so easy to do something daft when you are in a hurry then, as you are sailing through the air you think “that was silly!” Hope you mended soon and back to happy rambling.
Oh that sound awful, very similar to me with my domestic chores and bad shoe choice. As soon as I landed I knew I should have been barefoot. Anyway, lesson learned: I will get my husband to do the laundry 😉
Oh Kellie, I’m so sorry to hear about your foot. How incredibly frustrating and probably painful. I knew you’d done something, but hadn’t quite figured out what and hadn’t realised it was as bad. But you have given some pluses and sometimes it’s good to be forced to slow down. Your pancakes sound like a wonderful summer lunch, even if it is eating out in a rather raggedy garden. Congratulations on getting the recipe into Waitrose Magazine. I shall look out for it with eagerness. Go carefully and heal well.
Thank you Choclette, my dear. It’s all getting better but long country walks are still a ways away, unfortunately. But I can’t stay out of the kitchen so I’ve adapted my rather manic kitchen routine to get things done, and vowing to not be so silly again. Easy recipes coming to food to glow for the time being! 😉
Looking AMAZING , as always. Well done!
Thanks so much, Marylin; I like the “as always”. 🙂
Wow. You amaze me with your combos Kellie. This is a must-do. Cheers!!
This should work very well with chia eggs, Shannon. Let me know if it makes it to your table this summer. Lovely to hear from you. I hope you are having a fab summer xx
I will. Waiting for the garden eggplant to ripen up! It’s ‘Black Beauties’ this year versus the smaller Japanese variety in previous years. One big fruit would be perfect for just Scott and me. Cheers!
Everything looks delicious and beautiful, great work!
Thanks so much for taking the time to comment 🙂
These look so good. I just love how versatile Aubergines are, not to mention tasty! I’m off to the shops for some now to make these! Thanks…
You are so kind, thank you!
Looks so colorful and delicious, love all the ingredients you used and combined together 😀
Thanks so much – and for sharing on Twitter too! Have a lovely weekend 🙂
Thank you so much for your blog, you are truly inspiring! So glad I found you. Looking forward to be following your blog. You are really amazing!!! 😉
Aw, thank you so much! That’s such a nice thing to write – publicly! I Do let me know if you make anything from Food To Glow. Have a super weekend 🙂
Your welcome 😘 Yes I will let you know and be sure to link to your website when I try some of your recipies. And make sure it is ok for you. Have an awsome weekend you too 🌞👏
By all means, do link if you want to. 😊😊
On my list😍
This looks delicious! I have 5 pretty little eggplants on the balcony. I’m hoping they are generous this summer. Looking forward to making lovely dishes like this one.
I’ve not dared to grow them myself (I don’t think they would do too well in Scotland, unfortunately) so I am envious. I hope the beasties stay off of them and that you get to enjoy an epic late summer harvest. 🙂
I am making these tonight! Yum.
yay! I hope you like them 🙂
They were delicious!
Also had one for breakfast, topped with a poached egg. Fabulous.
Ooh that sounds delicious! Almost everything tastes better with an egg on it 😊😊
I have to agree with you.
This look so good!
Thanks! Let me know if you make this, or a version of it. 🙂
Your autumn is going to be exciting – I have a big collection of the Waitrose monthly magazines, dating back to 2005, I’ll be sure to watch for your name and recipe in the September issue. Hoping you are surviving the current heatwave – is there a shady spot in your garden to rest up? Meantime, at least you are still able to produce sensational food. These pancakes sound scrumptious.
These look amazing, I love vegetable pancakes and fritters but haven’t tried anything like this. I will be giving them a go once my kitchen is sorted (we are renovating and I am struggling to prepare anything more complicated than cereal at the moment…)
I haven’t had savory pancakes in a long time! But these look fabulous! I wonder if they is a way for me to veganize this recipe. Is there a way I can substitute the eggs or even omit them?
I think aquafaba might work but I wouldn’t swear on it! Buy it should bind just fine without anything, just a different texture. Lovely hear from you btw😊😊
Thanks for the aubergine pancake recipe – so timely as I have a large aubergine which needs using! Must try…
As I was reading your blog about the Froothie small jug, I wondered if you got this as an add on accessory? I have a Froothie 9400 which I bought on your recommendation about 2 years ago, and which I love. I would very much like a smaller jug, as you say for mini items (& easier to scrape out!)
Keep up the fab recipes – I am just making another batch of healthy granola, lovely!
I made this for a dinner party and it was a big hit even with the friend that does not usually eat eggplant. He actually went for seconds. The red pepper sauce is amazing on its own too. One of the guests also used the sauce as an accompaniment to the grilled meat that we served. Thanks so much for the recipe!
I’m glad to get your kind feedback, thank you. And I hope your friend dares to try other eggplant recipes now! 🙂