RV Cuisine

Crepes 101

Crepes are the ideal choice for any meal of the day

by Anthony F. and Marguerite Breda
manicotti crepe
Crepes are not only a dessert, but a dinner option as well. — Photo by Marguerite Breda

Crepes

Tony makes the batter (he’s a retired chemist, you know) and then one of us makes the crepes. We fight over this task as both of us enjoy cooking. We use a heavy skillet whose inside bottom diameter is about five inches. The trick to making good crepes is as follows:

  1. Heat the skillet to a temperature where the crepes cook quickly—not too hot—say medium flame
  2. Mix the ingredients to a thin consistency, so that the batter flows.
  3. Add just enough batter to cover the pan evenly.

Ingredients

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • Cooking spray
  • 2/3 to 1 cup flour

Directions

  • Break the egg into a mixing bowl and beat until completely uniform.
  • Add 3/4 of the milk, more or less.
  • Add the baking powder and mix well with a wisk.
  • Slowly add most of the flour, stirring all the while.
  • Now add some of the remaining milk and then some of the remaining flour while stirring to obtain a uniform slurry.
  • Finish adding the rest of the milk & flour and stir some more.
  • Adjust the consistency of the resulting batter by adding either a little bit of flour or milk.
  • The batter should have the consistency of whipping cream.

That’s the hard part. Now comes the easy section.

  • Coat the pan with a small amount of cooking spray.
  • Using a gravy spoon, add the batter to the pan, and gently swirl it around to cover the entire bottom of the pan and to obtain an even coating.
  • Cook for one minute until the edge turns color.
  • Gently loosen the edges of the crepe with a fork and flip it over with a spatula.
  • Cook the flip side for about one minute. It will not be as brown but that’s the way it should be.
  • Remove the crepe from the pan, and repeat the process omitting the cooking spray.
  • This recipe will yield about twenty crepes which can be refrigerated for about a week in cling film or kept in the freezer for about two to three weeks.

NOTE: We usually discard the first crepe, as it sometimes less than perfect.

Crepes for dinner: Manicotti

This recipe serves four or five, depending on appetite.

Ingredients

  • 20 crepes from above.
  • 2 lbs. ricotta cheese
  • 8 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • 15 oz can tomato sauce or a similar amount if homemade
  • Small amount of good quality olive oil to grease the pan
  • 1 tbsp. grated parmesan cheese.

Directions

  1. Break the egg into a large bowl, beat the egg and then add the Ricotta cheese and half of the mozzarella cheese.
  2. Blend all three ingredients with a spoon.
  3. Oil the bottom of a baking dish and spread a ladle of tomato sauce on the bottom.
  4. Now, place a crepe on a flat surface and put a good tablespoon of the mixture on the bottom fourth of the crepe.
  5. Roll the crepe like a cigar and place it in a baking dish.
  6. Repeat filling and forming all of the crepes. You can layer the rolled crepes one on top of the other depending on the size of your dish.
  7. Cover the top layer of crepes with tomato sauce.
  8. Sprinkle the rest of the mozzarella cheese over the sauce.
  9. Add the parmesan cheese to the entire dish.
  10. Now place the dish in a preheated 400 degree oven and bake for 30 minutes.
  11. Serve with a green salad and a full-bodied red wine.

Crepes for dessert

Prepare the crepes as above. Cook enough crepes for each person to have two.

Ingredients

  • Sweet whipped cream or ice cream
  • Crepes
  • Berries (blueberries, blackberries or strawberries) or sliced peaches
  • Sprig of mint or contrasting fruit (kiwi or pineapple)

Directions

  1. Place the whipped cream into a bowl and add the berries, reserving a tablespoon of berries for each crepe.
  2. Take a heaping tablespoon of this mixture and place it onto the lower fourth of crepe.
  3. Roll the crepe like a cigar and place it in the center of a desert plate.
  4. Add a teaspoon of whipped cream onto the middle of the rolled-up crepe.
  5. Sprinkle the reserved blueberries, blackberries, strawberries or peaches over the crepe.
  6. Add the contrasting fruit of your choice to the top of the crepe.
  7. Another option is to use chocolate chips or instead of the berries.

If you decide to use ice cream instead or whipped cream, place the ice cream inside of the crepe.

Crepes for breakfast

Prepare the crepes as above and serve five or six to a stack with either butter, preserves or pancake syrup on top. Fresh fruit on the side completes this dish.

Crepes for lunch

Ingredients

  • 4 oz. sliced mushrooms
  • 1 ½ tbsp. flour
  • 1 ½ tbsp. melted butter
  • 1 cup milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • Crepes

Directions

  1. Make the crepes as above.
  2. Saute sliced mushrooms.
  3. Prepare a filling of creamed mushrooms.
  4. Place two crepes for each person on a plate and add the creamed filling.
  5. The white sauce is prepared as follows:
  6. Under moderate heat, combine the melted butter & flour gradually.
  7. Add warm milk, stirring constantly with a wisk until the sauce is thick.
  8. Add salt & pepper, sauteed mushrooms and the sauteed drippings
  9. Serve with a green salad.

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