Cassava Pancakes with Sorrel Syrup

These pancakes, made with the traditional Caribbean ingredients cassava flour and coconut milk, are fantastic, especially when finished with fresh sorrel syrup. Cassava flour (or meal) is made by grating and drying fresh cassava. Not only is this dish 100 percent gluten free, but the fluffy pancakes are supremely satisfying because of their denser texture. The flavor combination is out of this world. Mango, guava, passionfruit, or tamarind syrup all work equally well in place of the sorrel syrup.

Sorrel buds make a great substitute for dried cranberries or dried pomegranate in savory and sweet recipes. The syrup, once cooled, should be stored at room temperature in a sanitized bottle or jar. It is great to use in desserts, over ice cream, on pancakes, in salad dressings, or in cocktails. (Recipe below makes 2 cups)

Makes 2-4 servings.

Recipes excerpted from Provisions: The Roots of Caribbean Cooking—150 Vegetarian Recipes by Michelle Rousseau and Suzanne Rousseau. Copyright ©2018. Available from Da Capo Lifelong Books, an imprint of Perseus Books, LLC, a subsidiary of Hachette Book Group, Inc.


For the pancakes

  • 1 3/4 cups cassava flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Large pinch of salt
  • 1 cup canned coconut milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coconut oil for the pancake batter, plus 1 tablespoon for cooking
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Nutmeg, to taste
  • Cinnamon to taste
  • Greek yogurt
  • Diced fresh fruit such as mango or grapes, or Candied Sorrel Buds (optional, see below)

For the sorrel syrup

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups whole fresh sorrel buds, washed


Step 1

To make the pancakes: Combine cassava flour, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl and set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, eggs, coconut oil, and honey; season with nutmeg and cinnamon. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and stir until just combined.

Step 2

Heat 1 tablespoon coconut oil in a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat. Ladle the batter into the sauté pan, using about 3 tablespoons of batter for each pancake. Cook about 2 minutes until lightly browned on one side, and then flip carefully. Continue to cook until both sides are golden-brown. Serve hot, drizzled with fresh sorrel syrup and topped with Greek yogurt and fruit.

Step 3

To make the syrup: Bring the sugar and 1 cup water to a boil over high heat in a wide-rimmed pot. Add the sorrel buds. Reduce the heat to low, and allow the mixture to simmer uncovered for about 1 hour until reduced. After about an hour, the sorrel buds should be candied, and the liquid should have acquired a syrupy texture. Using a slotted spoon, remove the sorrel buds from the syrup, and spread them on a rack to cool. Once cool, store the candied buds in an airtight container; they will keep for up to three weeks.

photo by Ellen Silverman