Sourdough Brunch Hotcakes | HOMEGROWN KITCHEN

Sourdough Brunch Hotcakes

I usually make these first thing on a Sunday morning and then we have them for brunch/ second breakfast about 11 o'clock. They would also make lovely pikelet-style hotcakes with cream and homemade jam!


  • 1 cup flour [GF: 3/4 cup brown rice flour with 1/4 cup tapioca flour]
  • 1/2 cup quick-cook oats [OR if intolerant to oats use desiccated coconut]
  • 2 tsp unrefined sugar or honey
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup sourdough starter OR 1/2 tsp baking soda mixed through just before cooking
  • 2 free range eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk OR 1/2 cup milk mixed with 1/2 cup yogurt
  • 2 Tbsp soft goat ricotta or cottage cheese
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Ghee for cooking

To Serve:

  • Blackberry & Bay Compote
  • Homemade yogurt
  • Maple or Apple syrup


  • Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. Make a well and add the starter, eggs, milk, ricotta and zest. Set aside for 3 hours to rise. If not using a starter then set aside for at least 30 minutes - 3 hours to 'soften' the grains and fold through the baking soda just before cooking.
  • To cook, heat a small knob of ghee in a heavy-based skillet and drop spoonfuls into the pan. I can fit about 3-4 per batch. Cook until bubbles appear on the surface then flip and cook until golden.
  • Serve with berry compote, yogurt and maple syrup. Enjoy!

I am often asked at my workshops, ‘why are gluten & wheat allergies so prevalent these days?’. Unfortunately there isn’t a simple answer, as there are many factors at play here. However, one thing I can tell you. It is the way we are processing our grains in particular gluten-containing grains that is a major concern. Unfortunately in our fast-paced busy lives we want everything now. If something takes time we quickly lose interest and move onto the next thing. In the past food took time, this doesn’t necessarily mean the food handling time was longer but that the time between start to finish could be days even months. If you have ever made cheese you will know what I am talking about.

Food preparation and preservation techniques were passed down through the generations. Grandma was taught by her mother, she then taught your daughters, and her daughters taught their daughters and so the cycle continued. We haven’t been out of this cycle for long – maybe 2-3 generations – and I believe we can learn how to get back into the rhythm of ‘slow food’ preparation that doesn’t mean hours in the kitchen. Food that we digest better and is also higher in nutrients.

This is a subject very close to my heart, I have been practicing preparing food using traditional techniques since I was studying Natural Nutrition 12 years ago. At the time I was living and studying in Canada which is advanced in terms of wholefood nutrition. 12 years ago hemp seeds and their oil were all the rage. Chia seeds were just emerging and kombucha was the daily soda drink. It is awesome to see these foods becoming hip in New Zealand over the past few years. This week I taught my inaugural ‘Kitchen Essentials’ cooking workshop in Nelson, and I was delighted to have a room full of people so eager to learn.

Lets get back to my initial query. In the past grains were harvested in the fields then left on the ground where they would sprout before being dried by the sun. The sprouting process changes the structure of the grain so it is easier to digest and certain nutrients become more available. Then the grain would be freshly milled as needed to make naturally leavened breads, flat breads, cracker breads etc. Most western-style cultures had some form of slow-fermented bread in their diet. The wheat was also lower in gluten, think spelt and kamut, the more ancient forms of wheat. Modern wheat has a higher gluten content to give us lighter, fluffier, whiter loaves of bread. And to top it off we cook it with commercial yeast and additives for a speedy rise. In 2-3 hours we have a loaf of bread.

I rarely use yeast in the kitchen, mostly I use my bubbling sourdough starter to get my fluffy rise. I shared my No-knead Sourdough Bread here a year ago and have since been adapting and improving it to share as part of my cooking workshops. I also make pancakes, pizza and these hotcakes are the recent addition to my sourdough repertoire. If you don’t have a starter or the time to let these rise naturally then you can use baking soda but at least try and sit the batter for 30 minutes to ‘predigest’ some of the grains before they hit the stomach.

Sourdough Brunch Hotcakes | HOMEGROWN KITCHEN

Sourdough Brunch Hotcakes | HOMEGROWN KITCHEN

A few things to share…

– This month I am a ‘Web Star’ along with Eleanor from Petite Kitchen in NEXT magazine. Pick up a copy to read about how we got into blogging, our stance on wholesome eating and of-course some delicious recipes.

– My ‘Kitchen Essentials’ Cooking Workshop in Wellington (14th June 2014) was launched on Monday and is now sold out. These are proving to be very popular so ensure you join my *Events* mailing list HERE to be first to hear about them.

– Our five chooks laid their first small pullet eggs this week.

– I planted out our winter garden by direct sowing broad beans, snow peas, carrots, winter spinach, silver beet, coriander. Plus some punnets of parsley, kale, celery and leeks. The garlic bed is prepared with a new layer of compost ready for planting in early June.

Sourdough Brunch Hotcakes | HOMEGROWN KITCHEN



Join the Conversation

  1. Enjoyed that read thanx Nicola. Love that pic of your gorgeous girly Nicola – she is so like her mamma! And, you look so pretty in Next 🙂

    1. Thanks Dawn! Lovely to hear from you. I hope chch is treating you and your family well x

  2. I’m new to your blogs…. really enjoying!

    1. Thanks Debbie, and lovely to have you here !

  3. nzecochick says:

    Great post. Wow cant believe you’ve got eggs! and your first ones!! I now have 11 birds and NO eggs!!! grrr. Not happy about having to buy eggs. Your little one is so super beautiful. Mx

    1. Our chooks are 20 weeks and had them since 10 weeks. I wanted some lovely heritage breeds but hubby put his foot down and wanted layers. So we have 5 brown shavers. We go through about 3 dozen eggs a week so you can see why!

  4. Hi Nicola, if we wanted to eat these 1st thing Sunday morning could I make it the night before and leave it overnight or is this too long?

    1. Hi Estelle, no that will be OK, they will be a little more sour. Just make them as late as you can in the evening. Enjoy!

  5. Ana Galloway says:

    Yay for homegrown eggs! Congratulations on being in NEXT and your sold out cooking workshops! What a star!

    1. Thanks Ana! Yes very exciting to be able to get our eggs from the backyard and so tasty.

  6. Melissa Bernstein says:

    Can you leave the mixture in the fridge overnight and cook in the morning (adding baking soda just before cooking?)

    1. Absolutely Melissa, however over winter it will be fine on the bench. Just add the baking soda just before cooking. Enjoy!

  7. Louise Carey says:

    I have made these quite a few times now and they turn out perfect every time. Love the addition of coconut and so light. I make them quite small like piklets. Kids love them. Thank you.

    1. Thanks Louise, they are great! Kind of like a healthy pikelet. Thanks for letting me know you are enjoying the recipe 🙂

  8. Hey Nicola, how do you think this mixture would go in a waffle maker?
    I’m going to try, I will let you know how I get on! fingers crossed! 🙂

    1. Oh I haven’t tried, love to know how you go. I have made sourdough waffles with a different recipe I will share some time 🙂

  9. Vicky Pollard says:

    Hi! Sorry forgot to reply! Ive done it a few times and they turned out great! Not as crispy as regular waffles, but the kids still loved them! 🙂

    1. Thanks Vicky! I have been perfecting a sourdough waffle recipe for my new cookbook. Watch this space…
      Hope you are well and keeping warm down south 🙂

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