Monday, 7 March 2011

Fair Trade Pancakes

Well we're about half way through Fair Trade Fortnight, and what better way to show your support than by making this Pancake Day, a fair trade event. When you can't buy local, try and buy fair, for a better deal for workers across the globe. Here are two fantastic recipes for pancakes with a twist and an extra treat for anyone planning to put their sweet tooth on hold for lent. The basic batter recipe will make approximately between 4-8 pancakes, though this will of course vary depending on pan size and you often have to allow for a few spoils.

Fairtrade Banana Pancakes with Raisins and Madeira:

100g of plain flour
225ml of milk
1 egg
Good Pinch of Salt

3 large Fairtrade Bananas
100g of Fairtrade Soft Brown Sugar
Good handful of Fairtrade Raisins, nuts of other dried fruit
60ml of Madeira Wine
50g of butter

Sift together the flour and salt into a bowl. Make a well in the middle and add the egg, lightly beaten. With a balloon whisk, slowly combine the flour/egg mix, while slowly adding the milk. You should get a batter of thin to medium consistency, perfect for crepes, as opposed to American style or Scotch Pancakes. If you have time, chill the batter in the fridge for about 30 minutes prior to use.

Peel and slice the bananas in half. In a shallow pan melt the butter, sugar and Madeira until a caramelised sauce (around 5 minutes), then add the raisins and bananas, cooking for about 1 minute on each side.

Remove from the heat, cover in foil and set aside. In another frying pan, ideally one suited to crepes,(or remove the bananas completely, quickly clean the pan and reuse if you're short on utensils), add some oil or butter on high heat until pan is very hot. A ladle or jug is the best way of doing this, you only need a little and you should spread it our on the pan as much as possible. I mentioned 'spoils' earlier, as it might take a few turns to get best results.

When done, place a banana, some raisins and syrup into each pancake and roll up. You can serve as it is, though this would be extra nice with some Fairtrade Vanilla Ice-cream, such as Ben and Jerry's which uses 100% Fairtrade Vanilla and Sugar.

Fairtrade Chocolate Pancakes

Using the same batter recipe and preparation method as the Banana Pancakes, you can make a wide range of Fairtrade Chocolate Sauces to complement. If you have a microwave, a very simple means of making a chocolate sauce is simply adding 100g of Fairtrade Chocolate  (broken up) and 100ml of milk into a jug and heating for 1 minute. Some mad bastards even use condensed milk, these tend to be American and don't have to rely on being able to find a NHS dentist. If you don't have a microwave you can melt chocolate easily in a pan, rested over a pan of simmering water, adding any cream, butter or even a touch of almond oil to thin out.

The key in all of these sauces is choosing your favourite chocolate flavours. Here are some of the most tempting Fairtrade Chocolate offers I've come across online, though many will be available in stores such as The Co-Op and other supermarkets.

Seed and Bean's Organic Fairtrade Chocolate with Chilli and Lime: Yum

Palmil Fairtrade Organic Chocolate: A Gluten and diary free alternative to milk chocolate, suitable for Vegans. For information on dairy free pancake recipes, check out the this site

Plush Fairtrade White Chocolate Petals with Raspberry. Gorgeous and with their own cute packaging. If you can't bring yourself to 'waste' these on a sauce, they would make an ideal gift or wedding favour.

Green and Black's Maya Gold: The first UK product to be awarded the Fairtrade stamp in 1994.

You can find out more about Fairtrade Fortnight by going to

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