Today marks the day I lost my crepe-making virginity. They say the first time is never good but to my surprise, it was a success.
The crepe is one of my favorite foods. It is delicious, chic, romantic, and can be served for breakfast, lunch or dinner. My mom often makes crepes (‘blintzes’ in Russian) for Sunday morning breakfast. When she does, I can smell them cooking in the kitchen in my sleep and usually within ten seconds I’m sitting at the kitchen table, with heaven in my mouth.
I’ve never made crepes entirely by myself so I was definitely intimidated. I decided to go with Tyler Florence’s recipe, modifying it slightly.
(Yield: about 30 crepes)
2 c whole milk
1 ½ c all-purpose flour
½ tsp salt
¾ tsp white sugar
4 oz unsalted butter, melted
Extra butter for greasing the pan
Add the milk and eggs into a blender and blend together. Add the flour, ½ c at a time. Then add salt, sugar and butter. Blend until you achieve a smooth consistency. The batter should be very thin. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Heat up a crepe pan (or small skillet) on low-medium heat. Place a knob of butter into the center of a paper towel and grease the pan. Ladle a spoonful of batter into the center of the pan while simultaneously turning the pan around and up and down to cover the bottom entirely and evenly. *”The first crepe is a trial one to test out the consistency of your batter, the exact amount you need for the pan, and the heat.”-Julia Child. After about one minute, the edges will start to lightly brown at which point you will need to loosen the sides with a butter knife, hold it up gently and lift up the crepe using your thumb and pointer finger, slide the knife under the crepe and swiftly turn it over. (Sounds daunting but you’ll get the hang of it.) An average crepe takes about 1 minute on the first side and 20-30 seconds on the second. It should be paper thin. Grease the pan between every crepe, or at least every other crepe.
Crepes can be made ahead of time and reheated and filled right before serving.
For a savory filling, I made creamy sautéed mushrooms. And for dessert, I made a blackberry sauce.
Mushroom filling (4 servings):
8 oz white button mushrooms, chopped
1 small yellow onion, sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tbsp olive oil
¾ tsp dried thyme
1/3 c evaporated milk
Beurre manie- *paste of softened butter and flour, 1 tsp of both, used to thicken the sauce and add sheen.
Heat the oil in a skillet on medium heat. Add onions. Cook 2 minutes until soft. Add mushrooms. Cook about 7 minutes, stirring frequently, until browned. Season with salt, pepper and thyme and add the beurre manie. Stir and cook 1 minute. Add the evaporated milk and stir. Wait until sauce thickens, about 1 minute, and turn heat off. Fill crepes as desired. Top with grated Parmesan cheese.
Blackberry sauce (makes about ¾ cup):
5 oz blackberries
¼ c sugar
The zest of one Clementine
2 tbsp water
1 tsp lemon juice
Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan. Cook on medium-low heat, stirring frequently.
The sauce should simmer 10-15 minutes until a syrup forms.