Pancakes and fritters are a versatile option for all situations from canapes to main courses and desserts.

Fritters are such an easy dinner, and with a salad they make a quick meal without much trouble. They work well for brunch, but if you make them small enough they also work well as canapes at a party. Since we're heading into barbecue season, these recipes all can be cooked on a barbecue hot plate, and are a delicious way to feed a crowd. Pancakes are in the same family as fritters, and this recipe works with all sorts of different fruits, but raspberry and lemon is definitely my favourite combination.

Pea, halloumi, asparagus and mint fritters

1 cup frozen peas, cooked for 2 mins, drained
6 stalks asparagus
200g halloumi
2 Tbsp milk
5 Tbsp flour
½ tsp baking powder
2 eggs
Zest of half a lemon
Small bunch fresh mint, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
Oil, for frying

Take half the peas and mash well with a fork or blitz with a stick blender. Add to a large bowl with the remaining peas.

Finely chop the asparagus, and chop the halloumi into chunks and add both to the pea mixture. Add the milk, flour, baking powder, eggs, lemon zest, mint, and salt and pepper, and whisk well with a fork until combined. If it feels too runny, add a little more flour. If it feels too thick, add a little more milk.

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Heat a little cooking oil in a large frying pan. Spoon a decent amount of batter into the frying pan for each fritter, and cook the fritters in batches. Cook on one side until golden, then carefully flip each fritter. Add more oil or a little butter if necessary.

Keep warm in the oven until you're ready to serve, and serve with a green salad and natural yoghurt or sour cream on the side.

Greek tomato fritters

My friend Theo is a chef who's been living in Cyprus and this recipe, which he calls Tomatokeftedes, inspired mine. They're a light fritter and perfect for a canape.

Greek tomato fritter with feta dip. Photo / Michael Craig
Greek tomato fritter with feta dip. Photo / Michael Craig

3 tomatoes, deseeded and finely chopped
1 Tbsp finely chopped mint
1 Tbsp finely chopped parsley
2 spring onions, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
2 eggs
6 Tbsp flour, heaped (I used spelt flour)
½ tsp baking powder
Plenty of neutral cooking oil, for frying
Fresh oregano, to garnish
¾ cup natural yoghurt
Pinch sea salt
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp crumbled feta

Place tomatoes, mint, parsley, and spring onion in a bowl. Add the eggs and season well with salt and pepper, then whisk gently with a fork. Add the flour and baking powder, and stir until just combined.

Pour the cooking oil into a frying pan to about 1cm high, and heat to medium-high. Using a tablespoon, drop spoonfuls of batter carefully into the oil, and cook until golden, flipping once. Use two tablespoons to move them around and ensure they're cooked through and golden.

Sprinkle with sea salt, and serve immediately, or keep them in a warm oven until all cooked.

Make a feta and yoghurt dip by mixing remaining ingredients with a fork. Taste and adjust as necessary.

Raspberry and lemon pancakes

Raspberry yoghurt pancakes. Photo / Michael Craig
Raspberry yoghurt pancakes. Photo / Michael Craig

1 cup white or spelt flour
cup wholemeal flour
cup rolled oats
tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
tsp baking soda
Zest of one lemon
1 cup natural yoghurt
1 cup milk
2 eggs
1 Tbsp neutral cooking oil
1 tsp good quality vanilla extract
1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries
Butter or oil, for cooking

Combine flours, rolled oats, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a large bowl. Mix well. In a smaller bowl, mix the yoghurt, milk, eggs, oil, and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and combine well.

Heat a medium frying pan to a medium-high heat. Add butter or oil, and a spoonful of pancake batter. Carefully add a few raspberries on to each pancake. Flip each once the top starts to bubble and the edges turn golden. Lower heat if necessary. Repeat until all the mixture is used. Serve with softly whipped cream and maple syrup.