The beautifully haunting solo cello suites of Bach simultaneously soothe and disturb. The perfection of the compositions is utterly satisfying and yet a yearning is nonetheless experienced. True, I am playing the role of hermit more intensely these past few days since my husband left for a two week work-related trip, but for brooding types such as I, Bach is often an occasion for reflection.
Consider the act of nourishment that paradoxically can become more complicated when you suddenly find yourself alone. As much as I like to cook, there is less incentive involved when the diner is just me, the cook. Not that I don't enjoy the fruits of my labors, but I don't relish the idea of eating the same dish for more than 3 days, yet cutting corners with bread and cheese and simple egg dishes quickly loses its appeal. Still, there is a certain satisfaction in indulging in whatever you wish, without witnesses, no matter the time of day or method of execution.
Craving a more nourishing meal, and determined to cook something other than eggs, I was reminded of these gluten free and dairy-free chickpea flour pancakes (pudla) that Lucy made after consulting her copy of Madhur Jaffrey's World Vegetarian. I've owned a copy of this cookbook for years, and although I vaguely recalled seeing the recipe, somehow I hastily scanned over it. My loss, until now.
I enjoyed these as a light dinner, with some spicy sun-dried tomato spread, but they would be ideal for breakfast or lunch as well and they are so flavorful and satisfying that you don't really need any chutney or sauce whatsoever.
I used some fresh cilantro and chilies from my garden, increased the amount of spice, of course, and halved the recipe, because I am alone after all. This recipe is easily doubled or tripled for larger family units. I will be making these again, there is no doubt about that. In fact, I didn't even bring a book or newspaper to the table with me, as I usually do when dining alone, wishing instead to focus all of my attention on this perfect combination of flavors.
|Chickpea Flour Pancakes (Pudla) with Crushed Peas, Ginger, Chilies and Cilantro|
|Recipe by Lisa Turner|
Adapted from Madhur Jaffrey's World Vegetarian: More Than 650 Meatless Recipes from Around the World
Published on July 23, 2008
Simple, soft fresh-tasting savory pancakes made with chickpea flour, spices, green peas and cilantro — dairy and gluten free, these are an ideal easy breakfast or brunch for one or two