Now, you may be thinking this is an odd combination, but if you’re looking to step up your pancake game then look no further! While it’s no secret that cacao and any nut butter under the sun are a match made in heaven, using tahini instead is a great way to switch things up. It adds a slight hint of bitterness that contrasts wonderfully with the sweetness of the chocolatey pancake, giving it a slightly more sophisticated edge. Don’t worry, the tahini isn’t at all overpowering, though, and, while it maybe gives a bit more of a “grown up” flavor, this is still a chocolate pancake at heart and, essentially, a way to have dessert for breakfast and feel like a kid again.
The idea for the chocolate-tahini combo came about while on holiday in Greece with my boyfriend this past summer. Up until then, tahini to me had simply been something I had to make sure never to run out of, so I could make hummus at all times – or something to spoon out of the jar on occasion. But it was unquestionably a savory ingredient. That changed for good when, on our second morning in Greece, I discovered halva – a sweet, dense sesame confection with swirls of cacao running through it – at the buffet. I bought a tub back home with me, but soon sobered up to the fact that it was basically just sesame and (a lot of!) sugar, and that eating it too much just didn’t make me feel great. That’s when I started trying to recreate the taste in a more nourishing way, mixing tahini with raw cacao powder and maple syrup or honey and eating it by the spoonful or spreading it on dates (do try this at home), and I haven’t looked back since. When deciding to make a new pancake recipe there was therefore no doubt in my mind that this combo would be a winner.
Now that I’ve hopefully sold you on why this is a good idea, let’s get right to it:
- 1 tbsp ground flaxseeds
- 2 tbsp brown rice milk (or water)
- 1 ripe banana, mashed
- 1 1/2 tbsp tahini
- 1 tbsp honey (or maple syrup)
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 8 tbsp/ ca. 60 g finely ground oats (or oat flour)
- 1 heaped tbsp raw cacao powder
- pinch of salt
For the sauce:
- 1 tbsp tahini
- 1.5 tbsp cacao powder
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1.5 tbsp brown rice milk
First, combine the ground flaxseeds with the 2 tablespoons of liquid, stir and set aside while assembling the other ingredients.
Mix together the mashed banana, tahini, honey and vanilla extract till well combined. Next, stir in the flax mixture, oat flour, cacao and salt until a thick batter results. Don’t worry if it looks slightly dense and lumpy – that’s exactly how it should be to get a super satisfying texture!
Heat up some coconut oil in a non-stick pan and spoon in some of the mix, shaping it into circles. It should make 2 medium pancakes or 6 mini ones.
While they are cooking, make the sauce by simply combining all the ingredients (don’t bother melting the coconut oil if it already has a spreadable consistency – it doesn’t need to be completely liquid). When the pancakes are cooked (after about 1-2 minutes on each side), serve with the chocolate tahini sauce and whatever else you like. I like having them with berries, chia jam and a bit more honey or maple syrup if I’m really feeling indulgent 😉
Feel Good Fact #1: Tahini is rich in essential minerals such cooper, manganese, calcium, magnesium and iron, which the body needs to function at its best.
Feel Good Fact #2: Raw cacao is extremely high in antioxidants, which combat cell damage caused by free radicals and decrease inflammation. In this way it can help protect against cancer and other diseases.