Les crêpes are considered highly traditional fare in La Bretagne, located in the northwestern region of France, near Normandy. During my exchange student days in Quimper, Bretagne, I could eat crêpes all day long, from the savory galettes filled with du fromage and du jambon (cheese and ham) to the sweet dessert crêpes filled with oozing Nutella. Les Crêperies dot the landscape across Bretagne often offering cold cidre (hard cider) to help wash them down! My favorite crêperie was the one located near my host mother’s market stand in Les Halles in Quimper (the indoor farmers market). Watching the vendor sweep the batter across the pan with such ease as he discussed that day’s weather or politics with the clients made it look automatic, and easy. Not so easy, as I soon discovered back in the states, armed with my own pan, batter, and wooden crêpe utensils. After years of various experiments, a wonderful teaching colleague shared her recipe with me for les crêpes! The results were fantastic, and they tasted exactly as I remembered. This recipe reminds me of my friend as she now resides in France living her best French life. (Not jealous at all...) ;)
PS I suggest watching the movie Julie & Julia while you're letting your batter sit, and then watching the movie French Kiss while you savor the delicious results!
Recipe serves 6 – I always double or triple the recipe otherwise they disappear too quickly!
Ingredients: 2/3 cup flour ¼ tsp salt 2 tbsp superfine sugar (leave the sugar out if you are making savory crêpes, like the one pictured above) 2 eggs, lightly beaten 1 cup milk 4 tbsp water 2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted, plus more for the pan
La Recette: 1. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, salt, and sugar. Make a well in the center and pour in the beaten eggs. Using an electric whisk, or by hand, beat the eggs, adding a little flour until it is all incorporated. Slowly whisk in the milk and water to make a smooth batter. Set aside for 20 to 30* minutes. If the batter thickens, add a little milk or water to thin.
*I will sometimes let the batter rest for up to two hours in the refrigerator for best results.
2. Heat a 7-8 inch crêpe pan, or sauté pan, preferably nonstick, over medium heat. Stir the melted butter into the crêpe batter. Brush the hot pan with a little extra melted butter and pour in about 2 tbsp of the batter. Quickly tilt and rotate the pan to cover the base with a thin layer of batter. Cook for about 1 minute until the top is set and the base is golden. With a spatula or butter knife, lift the edge to check the color, then carefully turn over the crêpe and cook for 20-30 seconds, just to set. Slide the crêpe out onto a plate.
3. Continue cooking the crêpes, stirring the batter occasionally and brushing the pan with a little melted butter as and when necessary. Place a sheet of wax paper between each crêpe as they are stacked to prevent sticking. ( Crêpes can be prepared ahead of time, just wrap and chill until ready to use.)
4. Fill your sweet crêpe with either Nutella, a chocolate hazelnut spread from France and Belgium, sugar and lemon juice, jam of your choice, or nothing…they are THAT good!! Leave the sugar out and make it a savory dish! Bon Appétit!
Please share your fun with crêpes (and experiment with different fillings!) by posting a photo to instagram or facebook and tag me: #thesunflowerofprovence (You can always send me an email with the photo!)
PRIZE ALERT: The best photo wins a fun treat from my warehouse!