Working long days, weekends and sometimes 6 days a week has made me realise how special my days off actually are. I've started spending my days off relaxing and doing chores at home (not fun but necessary) or going out and about with family and friends. Sometimes all of those things. That's a really productive day off.
Growing up, my dad only ever got one day off a week unless it was Eid or he took annual leave. Even then he still got calls if the site was still open. That meant Friday was family day. Forget making any plans with friends or any such malarky. We were spending it as a family. But that didn't mean we would be stuck indoors sitting on our hands. We would go visiting or we would go out for lunch or people would come round for lunch (my personal favourite) or we would go to the beach together or even run errands together. The fun ones included trips to the jewellery shop where the merchants weighed the jewellery in front of you and gave you the "best price" (made it up) and you haggled down.
Working in a cafe, I serve a lot of brunch. This has given me a real appreciation for brunch and it's glory. Incidentally, brunch in the UAE is an event because it's frequently very alcoholic. But I love brunch food. I really do. French toast, pancakes, eggs and other breakfast foods, waffles... I mean, what's not to like?!
Sweet Brunch Pancakes
3 eggs, separated
125g self raising flour
30g desiccated coconut
1/2 tsp cinnamon
50g caster sugar
Put a non stick frying pan or skillet on a low heat. You want the heat to be quite low but you want it to heat up before you pour the first pancake in. If the heat is too high the pancakes will burn on the outside and be raw in the middle.
Whisk up the egg whites with the caster sugar until it forms stiff peaks. Beat all of the other ingredients together. Fold in the egg whites carefully until just combined. Pour a teaspoon of frying oil in the pan and wipe it around with a kitchen towel so that the surface is only just coated.
Using an ice cream scoop, scoop the batter into a pan using about a scoop and a half per pancake. When the top starts bubbling, flip the pancakes over and cook the other side. Once the pancake is slightly firm to touch and bounces back it's done.
Serve with a selection of toppings. Nutella, maple syrup, fruit and yoghurt are all good options.