No bread is an island

...entire of itself. (With apologies to John Donne!)
I live and breathe breadmaking. I’m an evangelist who would like everyone to make his or her own bread. I want to demystify breadmaking and show it as the easy everyday craft that it is. To this end I endeavour to make my recipes as simple and as foolproof as I possibly can.

I call my blog 'No bread is an island' because every bread is connected to another bread. So a spicy fruit bun with a cross on top is a hot cross bun. This fruit dough will also make a fruit loaf - or Chelsea buns or a Swedish tea ring...
I'm also a vegan, so I have lots of vegan recipes on here - and I'm adding more all the time.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014


There are several things you can make with just self raising flour and water - here are some of them.

Yesterday I made several crepes Suzette for an after-dinner treat, using these pancakes. I had some batter leftover, so for lunch today I made a large pancake, spread half of it with hummus, with some slices of tomato, added a sprinkle of nooch and some black pepper, and folded it over. Voila! A hummus and tomato omelette! Simply gorgeous!

Pancake day tomorrow - but you don't need eggs and milk, just s/raising flour and water will suffice - and you won't be able to tell the difference! This recipe will save you a packet. Flour and water pancakes - just about as simple as it gets!

It's hard to believe, but these are just as good as those made with traditional ingredients.

And here it is - can you tell the difference?
200g self raising flour (you can also make these with gluten-free flour)
600ml water

1 mug self-raising flour
2 mugs water

Whisk together, to get rid of the lumps, and pour enough into a medium hot, oiled, frying pan to cover the base. Flip over to cook the other side when the bottom is browned to your liking - then serve with the topping of your choice.

(There's also a case to be made for putting some flour in a jug and adding enough water to make it into a fairly runny batter.)

I'm very fond of the usual sugar and lemon juice - but I also like them spread with homemade marmalade. I'm told chocolate spread is also very tasty on pancakes - I'll have to try it!

So, the benefits:
Cost – a batch of these pancakes will cost around 10p for 10 or more – about  a penny each. As against up to around 90p for a traditional batch.
Ease of making - you don't have to plan for these except by having a packet of self-raising flour in the cupboard. Really, there's no need to measure anything - just tip some flour in a bowl or jug and add water - stirring all the time - until it reaches the consistency you want.
Health – if you’re trying to cut down on dairy or eggs, these are for you. The young sister-in-law of one of my students (Nadine) is allergic to eggs, so Nadine was delighted to learn you don’t need them.*
Animal welfare. No animals will be harmed in the making of these pancakes.

Calories - This makes, say 10 pancakes. Self raising flour has 350 calories per 100g, so the combined total of the batch is 700g. Divided by 10 pancakes that makes 70 cals per pancake. Adding lemon juice and a teaspoon of sugar (5g) is 20 cals, so a good-sized pancake can be made for around 90 calories.

Nadine, one of my students told me about her young sister-in-law. She loves cooking and has been helping her mum make pancakes  (even flipping them) - and then had to watch her family eat them, for years. Yet she's never been able to taste one, until now. Nadine took the recipe round and they made pancakes straight away - and the youngster tucked into one with absolute delight. "That's pancake day sorted from now on!" was Nadine's comment!

Here's how I got to where I am with these.


  1. Thanks for the recipe, my mum used to make me these as a child as I was (still am) allergic to eggs, I never asked here how to make them but this has refreshed the noggin!! Now I have pancakes coming out of my ears!

  2. Mr. Paul, :-)

    Thank You SO much for your recipe.

    I've come to a very poor point financially, where, I only have half a bag of flour that a friend who moved left me, plus running water to make something for breakfast and, trying to find what to do, I Googled 'flour and water recipes' and, Bingo, your recipe appeared out of magic.

    I will try it tomorrow morning.

    I am sure it is going to be delightful.


  3. Glad I could help!

    Have a look at this post - some more flour and water recipes:

  4. I was stuck in the house with no eggs or milk (student living is cheap lol) and decided to try egg free pancakes. I prefer American style pancakes so I made the mix a bit thicker, I didn't measure anything, just made it to the thickness I wanted.

    Because I didn't put any sugar in them, I used a bit of low sugar/low fat Strawberry jam on top to add some flavour :)

    After using a this method of making pancakes, I actually don't see any point in adding milk or eggs. They taste just as great and are the same consistency as normal pancakes but are so much healthier for you.

    Definitely worth passing on :)

  5. Great stuff, Anonymous! (I wish you had a name, I get a few different 'Anonymouses' commenting, and I'm sure they're all different people!)

    I've never tried making the American pancakes - you've inspired me to try them, and perhaps write the result up in the post.

    Thanks for stopping by - and for inspiring me!

    Cheers, Paul

  6. I love you for this idea. broke to my last penny but have many stuff home. thank you soo much. life saver

  7. Thank you, Kwasi, for the feedback - don't forget to check out the other flour and water recipes on here.

    Cheers, Paul

  8. Mr. Paul i will. There are lots of great things here. Very helpful.

  9. Hi Paul. So glad I found your page. I was looking for a basic "dumpling" recipe, but, after reading this, I am going to give it a go tomorrow. I will let you know how it goes.

  10. I made these pancakes this morning and they were great. Thank you Paul. I had a good non stick pan, so I dry fried them, saving a few more calories. I topped mine with Lemon Curd. 22p in supermarkets. Tonight Im going to make savoury ones, adding salt and pepper to the mix and finding whatever is in my cupboard for filling.

  11. great recipe im literally eating it now i have mine thick with lemon curd and sugar im suprised at how good they taste with only flour and water really. im so glad i googled this i thought i was going to be hungry till monday. thanks

  12. great recipe im literally eating it now i have mine thick with lemon curd and sugar im suprised at how good they taste with only flour and water really. im so glad i googled this i thought i was going to be hungry till monday. thanks

  13. Hi Paul

    Glad I was able to help - thanks for the feedback!

  14. Great recipe esp as pancake day is coming up. Do you think you could make Yorkshire pudding using this batter?

  15. I've never tried it as a Yorkshire pudding - I'll have to have a go and let you know. Thanks for stopping by.

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  17. Hi Paul - great blog, I'm so pleased I found you!
    Emma :-)

  18. Hi! Thanks for the recipe! I was looking for a simple dessert that was healthy. I used oatmeal flour with baking powder instead of self rising flour since that was what I had. I then put a little bit of syrup on top. Very good and my sweet tooth is happy. :)

    1. Sounds tasty - have to try oatmeal flour myself. Thanks, Paul

  19. Tasted horrible! Call me old fashion or whatever but these were like eating dough balls. They were thick, doughy, and became even doughier when syrup was poured on them! Bisquick here I come

  20. Well I guess I'm going to have to call you 'old fashion'!

    Can I suggest that the clue to your problem lies in your use of the word 'thick'. These pancakes are supposed to be thin - if they're thick they could well be doughy (although see the comment re American pancakes above).

    I suggest you try again with a thinner mixture than before. And use the first pancake you make as a marker - if it's too thick, then add more water to the batter. If it's very runny, add more flour.

    These do work - as evidenced by the comments above! :)

    ATB, Paul

  21. I've been doing this since I was a teen and I'm 24 now. Some days I mix sugar and cinnamon, fry them then add syrup. Other days I fry just the flower and water and add diced tomatoes! Delicious! Glad to see I'm not the only one!

  22. Excellent! The batter really is flexible - my favourite is still the fruit pikelets.
    Thanks for stopping by, Paul

  23. How much oil do you need in the pan?

  24. What eles can u make with self rising flour, water and sugar

  25. Thank you so so much Paul, your recipe is great and oh so helpful when you have virtually nothing in the house! I never usually comment on blogs but I just had to let others know these really are great. I made mine with just SR flour and water, cooked in little butter, spread with a little honey rolled up and served to two very appreciative little kids! Thanks again.

  26. Can I do this with plain flour and water ???

  27. You can, but they won't be quite as good as with self raising flour.

    Cheers, Paul

  28. I made a lot of mistake in mine. For example, I added water and flour as I went and as an inexperienced cook, I should've followed the recipe. Hee hee. Then I tried to measure in cups (since I didn't have a mug), which didn't work. it was two runny and tasted watery. But next time (maybe tomorrow), I'm going to get self raising flour and see how it tastes using that with water. I might also add a little bit of salt. Can you please put up some pictures, so that I can see how runny the pancake batter should be and stuff like that? (I'm a visual learner).

    Thanks Paul,


  29. I just made these for my kids and sad to say, they hated them. Even my 8yr old that's eats EVERYTHING said it was disgusting. :-( I thought they were just ok.

  30. I must say, I was skeptical, got up early so I could make one for myself, before everyone else got up. Impressive! I am thoroughly amazed! These taste as good, if not better than store bought mix. Will be using this for pancakes from now on! Kudos!

  31. I must say, I was skeptical, got up early so I could make one for myself, before everyone else got up. Impressive! I am thoroughly amazed! These taste as good, if not better than store bought mix. Will be using this for pancakes from now on! Kudos!

  32. Thanks for the feedback, Angela. Glad you like them.
    Regards, Paul