Crêpes—The Master Recipe

Crêpes are worth keeping at the top of your mind for light, casual dinners and, of course, desserts. The French—frugal home cooks in particular—traditionally tuck leftovers into crêpes. Crêpes with leftover ham or chicken in béchamel sauce, invigorated with a sprinkling fresh herbs, make an incredibly satisfying lunch or supper.

When serving crêpes as a savory course or side dish, roll the crêpe around the filling. However, when serving crêpes as desserts, the French often fold the crêpes into half then half again to form a wedge, then top the wedge with the featured ingredient (rather than tucking it inside). I like this method—it gives you more concentration of the rich, eggy delight in every forkful.

Makes 12 7-inch crêpes

For the crêpes

3/4 cup 2% or whole milk
1/2 cup water
2 large eggs
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus additional melted butter for the pan
Pinch salt

1. Place the milk, water, eggs, flour, melted butter, and salt in a blender in the order given. Pulse until blended, scraping down the sides of the blender container once. Refrigerate batter at least 1 hour and up to 48 hours. (This allows the bubbles to settle out so the crêpes are less likely to tear during cooking.)

2. If the batter has separated during refrigeration, stir it gently to blend. Because each crêpe needs to cool individually on a plate, set four plates (7 inches in diameter or larger) on a countertop, ready and waiting to receive the just-made crêpes.

3. Brush the bottom of a 6- to 7-inch nonstick skillet with butter to coat it lightly. Heat over medium-high heat. Remove from heat and pour a scant 1/4 cup batter into hot pan quickly swirling pan to coat the bottom of the pan with batter. Return to heat and cook until lightly browned on bottom and crepe flips easily, about 30 seconds. Using a thin pancake turner or heatproof spatula, flip crêpe and cook about 30 seconds more.

4. Slide crêpe out of pan and onto one of the plates. Repeat with remaining batter, buttering pan only if necessary. (Reduce heat to medium if crêpes brown too quickly.) Once you’ve made four crêpes, you can start stacking the cooled crêpes, freeing up a plate for stacking the next one hot out of the pan.

5. For savory crêpes, place about 1/4 cup of the filling in the bottom third of a flat crêpe, then roll up. Place on plates seam-side down.

Other links you’ll enjoy:

How to Freeze Crêpes (and why you should)
Strawberry-Mascarpone Crêpes with Caramel Sauce
How to Serve Crêpes—The French Way

Products you might enjoy (affiliate links):

 

 

If you like this post, you’ll enjoy the easy, everyday French recipes in my book, The Bonne Femme Cookbook: Simple, Splendid Food That French Women Cook Every Day.

 

 

You don’t need a specialty crêpe pan to make crêpes—but you do need a nonstick skillet. I use the the T-fal Nonstick 10.25-inch skillet, which has about a 7 1/2-inch base. It’s also a great pan for omelets, general sautéing, and any number of recipes that call for a medium-size skillet.

 

 

I love using this small, heat-resistant Le Creuset Silicone Spatula for flipping crêpes. It’s really flexible, letting you get under the crêpe to easily to lift and flip it.

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