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Cookbook | Ingredients | Recipes | Cuisine of France | Dessert

Crêpes without any fillings

A crêpe is a thin pancake. The French word is from the Latin root crispa meaning "curled", from which the English word "crisp" is also derived. It originates from Brittany (Bretagne), a region in the west of France, where it is traditionally served with cider.

Crêpes are usually of two types: sweet or savoury, the main difference is the flour used (plain flour or buckwheat flour respectively). They may then be rolled or folded, and filled with different ingredients. Depending on the filling ingredients, filled crêpes can be either a dessert dish or a main course.

This recipe for sweet crêpes is an easy one to start with (for about 20 crêpes):

Variation I[edit | edit source]

Ingredients[edit | edit source]

The exact proportions are not critical. In practice, equal parts by volume of eggs, milk, and flour, measured by eye, with no other ingredients, still produces excellent results.

Optional fillings[edit | edit source]

Procedure[edit | edit source]

  1. Put the flour at the bottom of a mixing bowl and make a hole in the middle where you put the eggs, the melted butter, the salt and a bit of milk.
  2. Mix well by hand (traditionally, you actually use your hand to avoid incorporating air) slowly combining with the flour, you should get a thick paste. Then continue mixing and slowly add the rest of the milk, mix well to avoid making lumps. You may add a bit of liqueur (traditionally brandy or fleur d'oranger) for more taste. Allow to stand, perhaps for several hours whilst the flour gluten rests - very important to the final texture.
  3. Heat a crêpe pan (non-stick recommended), grease it with some butter, and pour some batter while rolling the pan to make the crêpe as thin as possible (8 finished crepe might add up to a stack 1/4" or 6mm thick). A drop of water can be used to test the pan temperature: too cold, and the water will sit on the pan, too hot and it will vanish immediately. At the right temperature, the water will seem to "dance" on the pan.
  4. Cooking may take 30 to 60 seconds until the cooked side looks like the surface of the moon, then turn it over to cook the other side; with some practice, you can flip it in the air by swinging the pan. See the whole-wheat pancakes recipe for air-flipping instructions.
  5. Serve with maple syrup, caster sugar, jam, spreads, etc. The crêpes can be filled and folded into triangles or rolled up.

Variations[edit | edit source]

  • For a sweet crêpe, add 2 teaspoons sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • For a chocolate crêpe, add 2 tablespoons chocolate sauce.
  • For a cheesy crêpe, sprinkle Emmental evenly over the crêpe while in the pan.
  • One can also substitute beer or soda water for the milk. The wheat flour can be replaced by buckwheat flour to make savory buckwheat crêpes, as a main dish (ham, cheese, etc.).

Variation II[edit | edit source]

Ingredients[edit | edit source]

  • 5 eggs
  • 1 cup of flour
  • 1 cup of milk

Procedure[edit | edit source]

  1. Combine all ingredients, making sure there are no lumps.
  2. Cook, following the steps for Variation I above.

See also[edit | edit source]