Keralan-inspired banana pancakes with peanut butter

Keralan-inspired banana pancakes with peanut butter

Anjum's Indian Vegetarian Feast
Emma Lee

Bananas are one of Kerala’s most prolific fruits and are used in everything. In Kerala at breakfast time, they might be simply sliced on top of rice pancakes, or steamed in batter in a banana leaf, or mixed with grated coconut and cashews and used to fill a pancake. My own version definitely uses western artistic licence, as the bananas are mashed into a quick and easy American-inspired fluffy pancake. I add cumin seeds to the batter, but you can leave them out if you prefer.


Quantity Ingredient
1 rounded tablespoon unsalted butter, plus more to cook
200g plain flour, sifted
good pinch salt
3 tablespoons caster sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
good pinch cumin seeds
2 large, ripe bananas
2 large eggs
300ml whole milk

To serve

Quantity Ingredient
1 ripe banana, cut on the diagonal into thin slices
4 rounded tablespoons unsweetened chunky peanut butter
natural maple syrup


  1. Heat the rounded tablespoon of butter in a small saucepan over a gentle heat until it is lightly browned and smells nutty, then set aside.
  2. Mix together the flour, salt, sugar, baking powder and cumin seeds. In a separate bowl, mash the two bananas with a fork until they have completely broken down, then whisk in the eggs, followed by the milk and melted butter. Make a well in the dry ingredients, pour in the wet ones and whisk, drawing in the sides until you have a smooth batter.
  3. Heat a teaspoon of butter in your pan (I use a cast-iron pancake pan, but a frying pan will work). Add around 50 ml of the batter for each pancake and cook over a moderate flame until bubbles start to appear on the surface and the base is lightly golden. Flip over and cook the other side until lightly golden as well. Keep the pancakes warm while you cook the rest.
  4. For each serving, place two pancakes on a plate, sandwiching a few slices of banana in the middle, scoop a tablespoon of peanut butter on top and drizzle with the syrup.
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