Sunday brunch. It’s somewhat of an institution here in New Zealand. The weekend is celebrated with a long, lazy breakfasty lunch, often amidst the chaos of a café, or if you’re like me, in the quiet comfort of your sweet home, surrounded by National Radio and lashings of Lady Grey tea.
I’m a sweet brunch girl – pancakes, fruit salad and Bircher muesli being on my list of hit picks. My Beau, like so many others out there, prefers a Brunch with The Works: Eggs, bacon, sausages, hash browns, roasted tomatoes, mushrooms, baked beans and toast (with marmite and cheese). That just ain’t how I roll. This recipe for brunch is perfect as it’s not too sweet and includes a hearty dose of super foods, which makes for two very happy campers.
The pancakes include Quark (or Kwark), which is possibly an ingredient that if you haven’t lived in Europe, you’ll probably be thinking “what on earth?” right about now. Quark is a soft cheese, similar to cottage cheese, although it’s not made with rennet like cottage cheese and has a smoother consistency. There are different grades of quark – minimal fat, regular (20% fat) and creamy (40% fat). In this recipe, the Super Foodie panel of experts advises that the minimal fat option is the winner. Quark is high in both protein and calcium, ensuring a satisfyingly healthy brunch that’s good for your bones, whilst pleasing many a palate.
Recently I’ve come across some exceptional Healtheries (brand) products, which are a welcome change from the traditional LSA (linseed, sunflower, almond) mixtures. The LSA used in this recipe has the added benefits of black chia, buckwheat and quinoa flakes, which provide extra fibre, antioxidants and essential omega-3 fatty acids. It also works super well sprinkled on yoghurt for an afternoon snack and appears to make everything just taste better. I should know – I’ve almost gone through a whole pack in 10 days.
The coconut whipped cream is a take on the delectable version that I’ve seen on Brandi’s blog The Healthy Flavor. I get very inspired by the dedicated food bloggers that are beavering away in various parts of the world, creating interesting and innovative dishes. Unfortunately, many of you won’t be able to enjoy the summer strawberry season here in New Zealand, however, a berry coulis (made from frozen berries) would also make a yummo substitute. Roll on the weekend!
Super Grain Pancakes with Strawberries and Whipped Coconut Cream
1/2 a cup of LSA with Super Grains
1/2 a cup of oat bran
A teaspoon of baking powder
1/2 a cup of quark
3 free-range eggs
3/4 – 1 cup of milk (depending on whether you’d prefer them large and flat, or small and fat)
Coconut oil for frying
A can of refrigerated coconut cream
A teaspoon of vanilla extract/paste or a vanilla pod, de-seeded
A punnet of the freshest, juiciest strawberries you can find
Agave or high-quality maple syrup
In a bowl, mix the LSA, oat bran and baking powder together. Beat the eggs together with the quark and milk and combine with the dry ingredients. Allow to rest for a few minutes. Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan and spoon the mixture into the frying pan to create pancakes of the desired size.
Whip the refrigerated coconut cream and vanilla in a beater or food processor until it forms peaks. Slice the strawberries. Layer or roll the pancakes with the strawberries and top with the coconut whipped cream. Douse in agave or maple syrup and devour.
Serves 3 really hungry people or 4 relatively hungry people.