Peranakan Pancakes – Thai Rice Flour Coconut Pancakes
People often comment how I have the courage to try recipes from so many different cultures, many ones that I have absolutely no connection to. However, I would be so bored if I had to eat the same kind of food every day. Eating good food is one of the few pleasures in life we can rely upon for those of us that live in developed countries. Why would I want to limit myself? Maybe it’s because I am a Gemini and we are reputed to have more than one personality. Maybe its coming from a multi cultural home where a week’s menu could consist of any combination of Caribbean, Indian, Indonesian or American food. Hence, even though I have never seen or heard of these pancakes before, I decided to bite the bullet and try these Peranakan Pancakes!
It can be really challenging when you don’t even know what the end result is supposed to be. However, do to my extensive blogging trials and culinary work experience, I just try to use common sense and good judgment and throw caution to the wind. Just because it’s from a cookbook doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a perfectly written recipe and will work well. I often have to adjust recipes and thankfully, I have enough experience to trust my gut (yes, just like Olivia Pope on Scandal, I have a gut J ) over the book.
Many Southeast Asian recipes will differentiate between thick and thin coconut milk as well as coconut cream. If you make fresh coconut milk, it’s easy to come up with a batch of any. However, most of us in the West buy canned coconut milk. Only the Thai brands like Taste of Thai and some organic/all natural brands sell both thick and thin coconut milk. You can also get the thick coconut cream by refrigerating a can of coconut milk. After taking it out of the refrigerator, remove the thick cream on top. The remaining liquid in the can is thin coconut milk. For thick coconut milk, just shake a can of regular coconut milk and that is thick coconut milk. If the recipe calls for a large quantity of coconut cream, it is more cost effective to buy cans of coconut cream, which are only sold by Thai brands. Make sure you get coconut cream and NOT cream of coconut. That is a totally different product, used in Latin cultures and to make Pina Colada.
Why this whole discussion about coconut cream/ thick coconut milk/ thin coconut milk? Based on the canned products we have in the US, there might be slight differences than in the freshly made products so I had to adjust the recipe accordingly, but the end result was delicious.
One of my many freelance jobs I have is teaching cooking classes and I hope on this blog I achieve the same result. Anybody can follow a recipe, but I hope I impart cooking skills to you. How to use your experience and knowledge to create your own version of each recipe is my goal. Whether you change it due to ingredient availability or due to personal preference, I prefer you use my recipes as a guide to develop your own culinary skills than follow my recipes to the letter!
IN THE MAKING PHOTOS:
Prep Time: 2 hours
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
Number of servings: 18
Yield: 18 pancakes
- 2 ¾ cups rice flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon instant yeast
- 2 ½ cups coconut cream
- ½ cup thick coconut milk
- 1 cup coconut cream
- 3 tablespoons water
- 2/3 cup palm sugar
- A pinch of salt
- 2 pandan leaves
- 2 ripe bananas, mashed
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons water (cornstarch slurry)
Banana Sauce Ingredients
- Combine flour, salt, sugar and yeast. Add coconut milk and mix to form a smooth batter. Leave the batter to ferment in a warm place for 2 hours, until almost double in volume.
- Meanwhile, let’s make the banana sauce. In a saucepan, combine coconut milk, water, palm sugar, salt, pandan and bananas. Bring to a boil and cook on high heat for 10 minutes.
- Remove pandan leaves and add the cornstarch slurry. Continue to simmer until the sauce is thickened, about 10 minutes.
- Heat a skillet and lightly coat it with oil. Spray a 1/4 measuring cup with non stick spray. Scoop batter into this cup and place on hot skillet. Using a wet spatula, flatter the batter into a pancake. Cook until golden on both sides. Repeat until all the batter is finished.
- Serve with warm banana sauce.