Blini (Russian Buckwheat Pancakes)

Blini – one of the most well-known Russian treats – are very small, savoury pancakes with a unique and appealing flavour. While some blini recipes call for yeast as a leavening agent, using baking powder instead speeds things up very nicely. Iron-rich buckwheat flour is – despite its name – not actually made from wheat and is gluten-free. If you are making blini for people with gluten intolerance you can either use all buckwheat flour, or substitute your favourite gluten-free flour blend for the all-purpose flour. Blini are best eaten immediately after cooking, but if you wish to prepare them ahead of time, they can be reheated in a 400F oven for about 5 minutes, until hot. Blini are the perfect vehicle for loads of delicious toppings; the most traditional in Russia are smoked salmon and caviar, usually with an accompanying dollop of sour cream. There’s some great caviar being harvested sustainably in Canada now, including the delicious Northern Divine brand from the Fraser River in British Columbia.

Buckwheat flour gives blini their unique, earthy taste. They're delicious with a variety of toppings including smoked salmon, sour cream and caviar.

Buckwheat flour gives blini their unique, earthy taste. They’re delicious with a variety of toppings including smoked salmon, sour cream and caviar.

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup(38 g) buckwheat flour
  • 2/3 cup (76 g) all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 g) baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon (5 g) salt
  • 1 cup (250 mL) milk
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) melted butter for frying
  • 5 ounces (140 g) smoked salmon
  • 1 cup (250 mL) sour cream
  • Caviar
  • Dill sprigs

Method

  • In a medium bowl, combine flours, baking powder and salt.
  • Add milk and beaten eggs to the flour mixture and stir until thoroughly combined. The batter should be smooth. The batter can be made up to an hour ahead of time and refrigerated. Stir it well before cooking your blini; you may need to add an extra tablespoon or two of milk if it has become too thick to spoon out easily.
  • Heat a large non-stick or cast iron frying pan over medium heat. When the pan is hot, brush it with melted butter, just enough to barely coat the surface.
  • Drop heaping teaspoons of the batter into the hot pan; your blini should be about one inch (2.5 cm) to one and half inches (3.75 cm) in diameter. Cook as many at once as your pan can accommodate.
  • Cook the blini for 3 – 4 minutes, until golden on the bottom and small bubbles have appeared on the top.
  • Flip the blini and cook for 2 – 3 minutes longer until golden on both side.
  • Remove from the pan and add desired toppings – either smoked salmon, followed by sour cream and dill, or sour cream followed by caviar and dill.
  • Serve hot.

Makes about 40 very small blini.

Advertisements

About Paula Roy

Welcome to my kitchen! I play with words and with food. I love simple dishes prepared with passion and am always seeking to find new methods to make food as fun and flavourful as possible. I'm also an enthusiastic explorer of faraway lands and cuisines.
This entry was posted in Appetizers, Meat, poultry, fish and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Blini (Russian Buckwheat Pancakes)

  1. Pingback: A celebration of Russian food for the 2014 Winter Olympics | Constantly Cooking

  2. Pingback: Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Pancakes | The Pinterested Parent

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s