Gluten Free and Eggless Pancake Stack

The origin of this dessert was a hungry snack and a lazy chef. It was late afternoon, and I was rummaging through our fridge and pantry searching for something not too terrible to eat. And I chanced upon a tub of packaged chocolate pudding and some bread. And so I made a chocolate pudding sandwich. Which was scrumptious.
What followed next is what you see before you today, a stack of fluffy thin pancakes sandwiching a silky and rich chocolate pudding, with a dollop of whipped cream on the top. Its safe to say that this tasted much better than my later afternoon snack did. You should definitely try this out, either as a luxurious breakfast, or as dessert at the end of a meal.

Pancake recipe adapted from: http://www.sarahbakesgfree.com/2015/12/gluten-free-vegan-pancakes.html
Chocolate pudding recipe from: https://www.hersheys.com/recipes/en_US/recipes/2804/quick-creamy-chocolate-pudding.html
Whipped cream recipe from: http://thepioneerwoman.com/food-and-friends/4-ways-to-make-whipped-cream/

Ingredients:
For the chocolate pudding:

  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2-1/4 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the pancakes:

  • 2-1/2 cups gluten free plain flour
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2-1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1-1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup buttermilk (or mix 1 cup milk and 1 tablespoon vinegar, and let it sit for about five minutes at least)
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the decoration (Makes around half cup extra):

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Sprinkles, as needed

Procedure:

For the chocolate pudding:
In a medium saucepan, whisk the sugar, cocoa powder, cornstarch and salt together. Add 1/4 cup of the milk, and whisk well to get a thick, homogenous mixture. Slowly add more and more of the milk (in 1/4 cup instalments), whisking well each time, to ensure that there are no lumps.

Place the saucepan on medium heat and stir well, until the mixture becomes thick and starts boiling. Ensure to continue stirring and scraping the sides throughout, to prevent lumps from forming. Once the mixture starts boiling, stir for about 30 more seconds, and then remove from heat.

Stir in the vanilla extract and butter in the chocolate pudding. Allow the pudding to cool before using.

For the pancakes:
While waiting for the pudding to cool, make the pancakes.
Sift the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda into a large mixing bowl. Add the brown and granulated sugars, and whisk well.
Using the whisk, create a well in the centre of the bowl, and into this well add the canola oil, vanilla extract and the remaining 1-1/2 cup of the milk. Whisk well, until the mixture is somewhat smooth and free of lumps.
Add the buttermilk and whisk well again, ensuring that there are no lumps.

Place a non-stick pan on medium heat, and wait for the pan to get heated. Spread a small cube of butter or 2 teaspoons of oil on the pan, and wait for it to get heated as well. Once the pan and the butter/oil are sufficiently heated, using a ladle spoon about 1/4 cup of the batter on to the pan. Use the back of the ladle to spread the pancake batter as thin as possible.
Once bubbles start developing on the top side of the pancake, and once lifting the pancake slightly reveals a medium brown colour, flip the pancake using either a serrated knife (works well) or a spatula. Repeat for this side, and then remove the pancake from the stove. Repeat to use up all of the batter, to make about 14-15 pancakes. Let the pancakes cool.

For the decoration:
Make the whipped cream: 
In a chilled bowl and using a chilled whisk (chill by placing in the freezer for about 30 minutes in advance), whisk the cream, sugar and vanilla extract together, until stiff peaks form. Place in the refrigerator to chill.

To assemble, start by placing a pancake on the serving plate. Top with around 2 big dollops of chocolate pudding, and top with another pancake.

img_2977

Continue this stack until all the pancakes have been used up (I made a stack of 14 pancakes, with a bit of chocolate pudding left to spare). On the top of the pancake stack pipe or spoon the whipped cream, and top with sprinkles. Chill for a bit longer, and then enjoy!

(Note that you could also spoon some whipped cream along with the chocolate pudding as the filling for the stack, but you should make about half a batch of whipped cream more if you wish to do this).

img_2956

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