Saturday, October 23, 2010
Crepes are an interesting thing. They wow people, they're adaptable, and they rock the free world. But, they're also somewhat delicate. You can tear and burn them in a flash. You can also ruin them with too much of this or not enough of that.
I have a basic recipe for crepes below, and it's easy to make. But, the thing you'll learn about making crepes is not so much what goes into the crepes as much as how you make them.
2/3 cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
2 Tbs powder sugar
Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a small bowl, beat 2 eggs and 1 cup of milk. Pour this wet mixture into the dry mixture and mix well.
Put the crepe mixture into the fridge for about 30 minutes.
When it's time, bring out the mixture, mix it well again.
Melt 3 Tbs butter in a large non-stick skillet. Pour the melted butter into your crepe mixture, and mix well.
The first thing you notice is that your pan has a lot of butter in it. That's a good thing! Your first crepe will be heavenly heavy, with a buttery sheen and plenty of depth.
Holding your mixture in one hand (I usually use either a small mixing bowl with a handle, or for larger batches, I use a plastic drink pitcher), and holding your hot pan in the other, start pouring the mix into the pan while you're moving the pan around to let the mix coat the bottom of the pan. You'll have to tilt it pretty far, because the batter will immediately begin to stick to the pan, so this is a quick process.
Sorry I didn't take a picture of this part of the process (I was using both hands at the time!), but think of having a basketball and setting your pan on the top of the ball. As you pour the batter into the pan, you would be sliding the pan around the sides of the ball in a full circle, so your batter moves in all directions.
You'll get the hang of this, trust me. At first your crepes will be thick. After a while, you can make paper-thin crepes with ease.
Second thing you'll notice is that they cook fast. I have a numbered gas stove, so I usually put it on 6 or 7 (out of 10). Medium or medium-high is the ticket. Unlike a pancake, you won't see bubbles form. You need to look at the color change and browned edges. Sometimes you'll flip too soon and sometimes too late. Don't worry about it, practice makes perfect!
The third thing you'll notice is that as you continue using your mix, the crepes appear a bit dryer. That's the butter in your pan being absorbed by each prior crepe. Maybe every 3 or 4 crepes, add a thin sliver of butter and whirl around.
The end result is spectacular. You an eat these with any type of syrup, jam or jelly. My wife loves them with rum-simmered bananas. I love them with white-wine-simmered strawberries.
Either way, you'll enjoy!