For the pancakes
- 250g plain flour
- Pinch of salt
- 2 medium free-rage eggs, beaten
- 500ml whole milk
For the filling
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 3 shallots, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 5 fresh thyme sprigs, leaves stripped
- 2 free-range chicken breasts, diced into 1cm cubes
- 25g butter, plus extra for frying
- 200g button mushrooms, quartered
- 30g plain flour
- 350ml whole milk
- Splash of double cream
- Good grating of fresh nutmeg
- Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
- 3 medium free-range eggs, beaten
- 150g fresh fine breadcrumbs
- Pinch of ground turmeric
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Heat the olive oil in a pan over a low heat and cook the shallots and garlic for 8-10 minutes until soft. Add the thyme and chicken, then increase the heat and fry for 5-6 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Transfer to a bowl.
- Add a knob of butter to the pan and fry the mushrooms over a high heat for 2-3 minutes, then add to the bowl. Melt 25g butter in the pan and add the flour. Cook for 2 minutes, then gradually add the milk, stirring to make a smooth, thick sauce. Bring to the boil, then bubble for 1 minute to thicken and cook out the flour. Add the cream, nutmeg and zest. Season.
- Add the sauce to the chicken and stir. Set aside to cool while you make the pancakes.
- Sift the flour into a large bowl with the salt. Make a well in the centre and pour in the eggs. Slowly pour in the milk into the well, whisking to incorporate the flour, until you have a smooth batter. Leave to rest for 30 minutes.
- Lightly grease a medium, heavy-based shallow frying pan with a little butter or vegetable oil. Put over a medium heat and, when hot, pour in half a ladleful (about 50ml) of the batter and swirl the pan so the batter spreads completely around the base, filling in any holes along the way. Leave for 30 seconds until you can see the batter starting to set.
- With a spatula, loosen hte pancake from the pan, then flip it over and cook for a further 30 seconds on the other side until golden. Transfer to a plate, keep warm and continue with the rest. You'll need 8.
- Put a pancake flat on a board and spoon 2-3 tbsp of the chicken mixture into the centre. Brush the edges of the pancake with beaten egg, fold in half and press the edges to seal. Repeat with the remaining pancakes and chicken mixture.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan160°C/gas 4. Put the breadcrumbs in a wide, flat bowl and mix with the turmeric and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Coat each filled pancake in beaten egg, then in the breadcrumbs.
- Heat a layer of oil in a non-stick frying pan, then fry the pancakes in batches for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden. Transfer to a lined baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Serve with a green salad or seasonal veg.
- Freeze the crumbed, uncooked pancakes on a baking sheet, then store between sheets of baking paper in a sealed container. Defrost fully, then continue from step 6.
Any leftover stew, curry or chicken/fish pie filling would be brilliant inside these pancakes.