Posted by Móna Wise in Features.

We are all settled back into the daily routines of work and school and have noticed, as the kids are getting bigger and wiser, their appetites seem to be growing too. Sure—feed them, love them, watch them grow, is every parent’s dream. But shop for them, cook for them and clean up after them can be just the opposite. While being entertained by their teachers throughout the school year, the children are sustained on a bowl of porridge, a piece of fruit and a sandwich for the entire school year. Simple, right? So why is it once the weekends descend upon us they are hit with insatiable hunger?

This week, we have a recipe to share that will help you fix lunch in a flash. Pancake batter is something we are all too familiar with. A few eggs, a bit of flour and some milk and instant, happy less hungry family, right? Well, take this batter and jazzing it up a bit with sweet potato and a few plump prawns turns an afternoon snack in to a perfectly acceptable summer supper. Pancake batter is very forgiving. Once you attempt to make these savoury pancakes you can use the same method to use up a few items in the fridge when there’s nothing to eat keeps ringing in your ears. That small piece of ham that needs to be used up or that end of soft cheese that is ready to go.

Using leftovers in new ways is a skill developed over time that when mastered saves you a bundle of time, money and energy. Keeping our tried and tested Korean sauce in the fridge will give you reason to steam a piece of fish at the drop of a hat, because you have the sauce, or baste a chicken on the grill, because the sauce is right there, or even whip up a batch of (leftover) fried rice, because the sauce was just begging to be used.



Sweet Potato Savoury Seafood Pancakes (serves 6)

When faced with a hungry crowd, as we often are here at home, the key to keeping everyone happy and fed in a hurry is a tiny bit of organisation. In the long run, keeping a well stocked pantry and a few decent sauces in the fridge ensures a tasty outcome when the pressure is on to feed the family. We all know how easy it is to whip up a batch of pancake batter. Add a few surprising items to your next batch of pancakes and boost the vegetable and protein intake without much notice. This one will become a family favourite for sure.

What you will need

  • 200g [7oz] prawns, (raw, peeled and deveined)
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of white pepper

For the pancake batter

  • 1 medium sized sweet potato, baked, peeled and mashed
  • ¾ cup self raising flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • Pinch of salt
  • 5 green onions, chopped
  • 1 red chili, sliced thinly
  • ¼ cup coriander
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup oil, for cooking pancakes

How to prepare

To prepare the prawns

  1. If using large prawns then roughly chop them before cooking.
  2. Sauté the prawns, garlic, salt and pepper in butter for four minutes.

To prepare the batter

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat the two eggs then add in the flour, milk and salt and mix with a wire whisk until smooth. Add in the mashed sweet potato and mix again.
  2. Next, add in the green onions, chili, coriander and chopped (cooked) prawns and mix with a large spoon to incorporate into the batter. Sauté gently two minutes each side on medium heat. Serve and eat immediately with the Korean sauce.

Korean dipping sauce

When planning a meal around here, the sauce always has a big role to play in the end result. When we come across a sauce loved by the whole family we tend to keep a jar of it on hand in the fridge and that way, when trying to feed a hungry brood in a hurry, there is one less thing to make. This dipping sauce can be used as a favourite sauce served alongside a plate of wontons, poured over a delicious fried rice or noodle dish, or as the perfect accompaniment to our sweet potato savoury seafood pancakes.

What you will need

  • 236ml [1 cup] soy sauce
  • 129ml [½ cup] water
  • 1 pinch brown sugar
  • 1 pinch black pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tbsp concentrated vinegar (Essig essence)
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 2 serrano peppers (spicy)
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil

How to prepare

  1. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Store in the fridge in a jar with a tight seal for weeks on end.

We use this sauce a lot here at home. We have basted roasting chickens with it, dipped dumplings in it and it is also an excellent choice for drizzling over a bit of fresh salmon sashimi if you are fortunate enough to have a bit on hand.