Buckwheat Blinis with Asparagus & Beetroot Hummus

These blinis make a great base for a canapé or starter. Despite the name, buckwheat flour is gluten-free, fibre-rich and full of minerals.
Asparagus provide the prebiotic fibre inulin, beetroot support heart health and chickpea protein content helps contribute to stable blood sugar levels, making these the ideal all-rounder to start off any dinner party.
Servings: 60 Blinis



  • 170 g buckwheat flour
  • 2 tsp gluten-free baking flour
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 350 ml almond milk
  • 2 tbsp flaxseed, mixed with 6tbsp filtered water (to make "flax egg")
  • 3 tbsp cold pressed extra virgin olive oil

Beetroot Hummus

  • 480 g cooked chickpeas
  • 160 g cooked beetroot
  • 1/2 large garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 lemon zest & juice
  • 1 heaped tsp tahini, light or dark
  • 1 1/2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 150 ml cold pressed extra virgin olive oil
  • 20 ml filtered water
  • 1 pinch sea salt


  • 375 g Fine asparagus, stalks trimmed, tips halved lengthways
  • 142 g non-pareil capers, drained, rinsed, roughly chopped
  • 80 g pine nuts, roughly chopped
  • 30 g fresh dill leaves de-stalked


  • Start with the blini batter. Make the flax egg mixture and leave for 10 minutes to swell.
  • Mix the flour with the baking powder and salt. Whisk in the almond milk to add air pockets into the batter.
  • Fold in the flax egg and leave the mix to rest for 30 minutes, to allow the baking powder to start lightening the batter.
  • For the hummus, add the garlic, cumin, tahini and salt to the food processor. Blitz until roughly chopped. Add the half the chickpeas, beetroot lemon zest and juice and water. Blitz until combined. Add the remaining chickpeas and then with the motor running drizzle in the oil until a smooth consistency is reached (you may not need all the oil or if you like a runnier hummus add an additional splash of water). Taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.
  • Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil, add the asparagus tips and cook for 1 minute, then quickly drain and plunge the asparagus into a bowl of iced water to stop them over cooking and discolouring. After 5 minutes, drain the asparagus and pat dry with kitchen paper and lightly season with salt and pepper.
  • Return to the blini batter. Heat enough olive oil to lightly coat the bottom of a medium/large sauce pan. When the pan is hot, spoon just less than 1 tbsp of batter near the edge of the pan to create a mini pancake shape. Continue to add more batter around the edges of pan, careful to leave enough space between them for turning over (aim to have no more than 5-6 in a pan at once).
  • When air bubbles start to appear in the centre of the blinis and the edges looked cooked (about 3 minutes, keep an eye the pan isn’t getting too hot), flip the blinis over for another 1-2 minutes until the bases are golden. Turn the blinis out and rest on kitchen paper while you continue to cook the remaining batter.
  • To serve, place a heaped teaspoon of the beetroot hummus in the centre of the blini, place a few asparagus tips on top and sprinkle over the chopped pine nuts and capers finally garnishing with sprigs of dill.


Allergens: Nuts, sesame seeds.
Notes: for evenly shaped blinis you may find it easier to pipe the batter into the hot pan ready to cook using a piping bag or decanting the batter into a squeezy bottle. The cooked blinis can be frozen and defrosted at room temperature for a couple of hours and refreshed on a baking tray in a moderately hot oven for 5 minutes. The blini batter can be prepared the day ahead.
Any leftover hummus can be refrigerated for 5 days.

Recipe by Francesca Klottrup, chef and nutritionist, lecturer on the Natural Chef and Vegan Natural Chef Diploma Courses.

Photograph by Juliet Klottrup