When was the last time you made crepes for your family? I’ll wait right here while you think back that far…
Oh, you never make crepes you say? I see. Y0u think crepes are “one of those complicated things that other people make,” right? Nope.
If you can make pancakes, you can make crepes. Really. You probably already have all the ingredients on hand and you don’t need any special equipment either. Just a nonstick skillet. A crepe pan is strictly optional.
Crepes are an old-fashioned treat that don’t get much attention these days. I think that’s a real shame because they’re actually a very versatile and useful recipe to know.
Sweet crepes can take on so many forms – filled with fruit like the luscious ripe strawberries I used in this version. Or spread them with jam or jelly, fill them with a pastry cream or sweetened soft cheese and roll or fold them for a quick, delicious treat.
Or take your crepes to the savory side by leaving out the sugar in the batter and filling with any one of hundreds of savory fillings. Sauteed veggie crepes (spinach and mushrooms, anyone?) make a delicious light dinner. Or how about a potato and leek filling or a creamed seafood mixture? Or my favorite, a cheesy, creamy chicken filling with a luscious white sauce on top. Yum! Just use your imagination.
And if you have leftover crepes, they freeze really well. Stack them up, wrap them tightly and pop them in the freezer. They’ll be ready to go next time you need them.
This recipe varies from most classic recipes only where I’ve substituted half the all-purpose flour for whole wheat. It makes a slightly darker finished crepe, but there’s really no difference in taste.
Start by measuring the dry ingredients into a large bowl. Stir in the wet ingredients. Beat with a mixer until combined and smooth. Or, alternately, combine all ingredients in a blender and process until smooth.
Note that the batter will be thin. Similar to light cream. Don’t expect a pancake-like batter.
Set it aside to rest for 30 minutes before proceeding with the recipe. This step gives the flour time to become well hydrated and is important for obtaining the correct texture in the finished crepes.
Heat a small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add a tiny amount of butter (no more than 1/2 teaspoon) to the pan and heat until bubbly. I often skip the butter altogether. Pour a scant 1/4 cup of batter into the skillet. Immediately pick up the pan and tilt and rotate it until the batter covers the bottom. Put it back on the heat and cook until lightly browned on bottom. You’ll learn quickly how to tell when it’s time to turn the crepe. The top will start to loss its shine and will begin to have a dry appearance. To turn the crepes, I use a spatula to gently lift a corner, then I just pick the crepe up and turn it over. You may want to slide the spatula under the crepe and turn it that way. Not everyone has “asbestos fingers” as mine are often called. After you turn the crepe, briefly cook the other side. The second side will cook very quickly.
It’s often said that the first crepe belongs to the dog. Meaning that the first one never comes out quite right. It’s true. I can’t explain it, but that first crepe always hits the trash. Just accept it.
Stack the crepes on a plate as they are completed. You can simply stack them one on top of the other. No need for cooling racks or any of that business.
To serve, place a small amount of whipped cream on one-quarter of a crepe. Top with a few strawberries. Fold the crepe in half and then in half again. I know most people place the filling down the middle and then roll the crepe. I do sometimes, too, but I think a folded crepe is a pretty alternative. Serve with additional whipped cream. To do a rolled crepe, spread whipped cream down the center of a crepe. Top with strawberries and roll up.
Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve with additional whipped cream.
Other crepe recipes you might enjoy from around the internet:
- Blueberry Crepes with Orange Ricotta Filling from Creative Culinary
- Leite’s Culinaria’s Dulce de Leche Crepes
- Baking Bites’ French Ham, Egg, and Cheese Crepes
- Mushroom and Bacon Filled Crepes from Epicurious
- Taste of Home’s Cheesy Chicken Filled Crepes
What I was cooking…
- One year ago: Another Buttermilk Biscuit
- Two years ago: Chicken Quesadillas with Avocado Salad
- Three years ago: Favorite Homemade Pizza