07 October 2014
Whole wheat crepes with mushrooms and red pepper sauce
I don't know, you guys. Things have been interesting around here.
I am beginning the slow descent into work busy season, which means plenty of long days reading and writing even more than usual. Incidentally, if any of you are applying to law school this fall, come on over!
John and I took a quick, super-activity-filled weekend trip to Portland in mid-September. When we got back, we both immediately got sick, and we stayed sick for the duration of the month. Yay?
And, of course, the first week of October is birthday week. We have had two delicious yet fairly sedate birthday feasts -- seared sole and green beans for me, plenty of enchiladas for John -- and no birthday cakes, although there may be an apple pie happening this coming weekend. Or possibly more brownies. We'll see.
Right. So with all that going on, let's talk about something simple. Crepes.
The crepe bug bit while we were staying with Danny & Bethany in Portland. Crepes are A Thing at their house, so one morning we all had a delightful brunch filled with plenty of crepes and butter and lemon and jam and sour cream and sugar and homemade blackberry syrup.
Once we were both home and recovered, we clearly needed to make some crepes of our own. So that's what we did.
I actually like savory crepe fillings better than sweet, so the vast syrup spread did not happen at our house. Instead, I made a batch of simple whole wheat crepes while John made sauteed mushrooms and this delightful Jacques Pepin red pepper sauce.
For a super-simple sweet option, we had chopped almonds and CSA honey with some cracked pepper. With a few cups of coffee, it was all exceptionally nice.
I personally recommend letting everyone fill and fold their own crepes. It's much more fun to eat them that way.
You can arrange your filling in a line down the middle and roll up your crepe. Or spread a thinner filling more evenly and fold the whole thing into quarters. Or put a huge spoonful of filling right in the middle and fold the sides up and in to make a square. You do you.
3/4 cup flour (whole wheat in our case, or use your choice)
1/2 tsp sugar
3/4 cup milk
3 tbsp melted butter
veg or other tasteless oil to cook
Start by adding your flour, eggs, sugar, and a bit less than half your milk to a large mixing bowl. Mix everything together thoroughly with a whisk. This will easily break up any lumps -- the trick to avoiding lumps in a thin batter like this is to only add some of the liquid at first!
When your mixture is smooth, add in the rest of the milk and the melted butter and whisk again until smooth.
It's time to cook your crepes! Lightly oil a a nonstick pan 8 inches or more in diameter. Make sure it has a long handle for easy turning. Put your pan over medium-high heat and let it get good and hot before you start cooking.
Use a ladle or measuring cup to pour a small portion of batter into your hot pan. Start from the middle and spread the crepe batter thinly by quickly rotating and shaking the pan. Or you can use the bottom of your ladle to spread your batter, spiraling out from the middle. In either case, you'll want to move quickly to get the batter as thin as you can before it starts to set. Don't worry -- you will get the hang of it and figure out what works for you!
Cook for a minute or two, or until the first side has just begun to brown. Flip and cook the other side for another minute or two, or until done. Remove to a covered plate and repeat until you've cooked all your batter. This recipe will make about 8 crepes, or more if you're particularly adept at getting a thin coating of batter into the pan.
Serve your crepes with whatever filling you like.
Mushrooms sauteed with butter and shallots
optional splash of vermouth to deglaze
salt, pepper, maybe some thyme and marjoram
Melt a pat of butter in a frying pan on medium heat. Dice your shallot and add it to the butter, along with a pinch of salt. Stir and cook for five minutes, or until translucent.
While you're waiting, chop your mushrooms as finely as you prefer. Add them to the pan, stir, and season to taste.
Cook your mushrooms on medium for about ten minutes, stirring occasionally. Deglaze the pan with a dribble of vermouth or plain water if needed.
When the mushrooms are done to your taste, use them to fill a couple of crepes. Add a little bit of red pepper sauce to the filling before you roll your crepe, if you like. (If not, a little bit of cream is a good last-minute addition.) Spoon a generous amount of red pepper sauce over the rolled crepes, and eat.
ZOMG. It's so good.
What are you eating for your long, leisurely weekend breakfasts lately?