One of my favorite desserts while I was studying French in Paris during ancient times was crêpes. They were just light enough to top off a meal. After eating at one of the endless choices of restaurants in the Quartier Latin, I’d stop by an outdoor crêpe vendor for a freshly made crêpe on my way back to my hotel.
My plan was to get back to the hotel, relax a little, and then eat my warm crêpe while I studied. You guessed it, the crêpe never made it back to the hotel! Well, maybe once or twice.
Its buttery aroma wafting through the air was enough to entice me to take a bite. Then another. And another. And another. Before I knew it, the crêpe was all gone. The only evidence left was the melted sugar dripping from my hands.
When I got home to New York, I dreamed of eating those crêpes. I wanted to make a healthier version with healthier ingredients.
I took me many years, but I think I’ve got it! My recipe has changed from white flour, to unbleached flour, to unbrominated flour, to wholewheat flour, and now to sprouted flour.
The filling has changed from homemade, sugar sweetened apricot jam, a gift from Annick, the financée of one of my classmates at the Sorbonne, to fruit juice sweetened jams to fresh fruit and a bit of maple syrup drizzled on top.
Today, my family enjoys my healthier version of the crêpe. It is also an economical and quick dessert. It can also be filled with savory fillings as a dinner or breakfast crêpe, or as a substitutes for regular pancakes. Once in a while when I have a few crêpes left over, I spread a thin layer of crunchy almond or peanut butter on them and enjoy them as a healthy snack.
All the ingredients for the crêpe batter can be hand mixed or blended in a blender. In a bowl mix or blend 3/4 cup of milk or 3/4 cup of apple juice, one egg, 1 teaspoon of vanilla, and one teaspoon of raw agave syrup. In a second bowl, mix the dry ingredients: a half cup of organic, sprouted spelt flour; a pinch of cinnamon; and a pinch of salt. Add the dry ingredients a bit at a time to the liquid mixture. The consistency should be the consistence of light cream. If it’s too thick, add more milk or juice. The batter should easily spread and cover the bottom of the pan as you tilt it. Tilt the pan quickly so the batter swirls around the pan keeping the crêpe thin.
Make sure your frying pan is hot and greased. I’ve used grass-fed butter or coconut oil. Watch the heat so that the fat doesn’t burn.
When the edge of the crepe turns a lighter color, the crepe is ready to be flipped. Loosen the crepe with a spatula and flip. I’ve seen some people flip the crepe by tossing it into the air without a spatula. Several times I’ve stopped myself short of flipping it right from the pan for fear that I’ll drop it on the floor. I just don’t want to waste any of these delicious crepes!
Let the reverse side cook a few seconds, slide (Now this I can do!) the crêpe from the pan onto a plate.
Fill with your favorite filling—fruit, apple butter, nut butter, homemade jams or jellies.
To make a savory crêpe, omit the cinnamon. Add anything that will enhance your savory crêpe—herbs, grated cheese, spices, or make it plain. It makes a great breakfast sandwich.
Spread the filling on half the crêpe or on the entire crêpe. Then fold into quarters or roll. Plate the rolled crêpe with the edge facing the down.
6-8 small crêpes
5 big crêpes
3/4 Cup organic grass-fed milk
1 range-free omega 3 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon of raw agave syrup
1/2 Cup sprouted organic spelt flour or sprouted whole wheat flour
pinch of cinnamon
pinch of salt
fat of your choice-butter, coconut oil, ghee
1. Mix all the wet ingredients in a bowl. In a second bowl, mix all the dry ingredients. Gradually add dry ingredients to the wet. I like to mix everything by hand. I get all the lumps out by pressing them against the sides of the bowl with my mixing spoon. The consistency should be liquidy, like light cream.
2. Heat up the frying pan. Then coat it with the fat of your choice. Adjust your flame accordingly to prevent the fat from burning.
3. Laddle approximately 1/2 of a cup of batter if using a small frying pan for smaller crêpes. Laddle 3/4 of a cup of batter if using a large frying pan for larger crêpes. Tilt the pan quickly to coat the entire bottom of the pan with batter. If you run out of batter before you finish coating the entire bottom, add more batter. To make the crêpe as thin as possible, tilt quickly.
4. Let the crêpe cook. When the edge changes to a lighter color, carefully get under the crêpe with your spatula. When its loosened, flip it.
5. Let the reverse side cook.
6. Slide the cooked crepe onto a plate.
7. Serve by filling the crêpes with your choice of filling.
Modifications and suggestions: I’ve filled my crêpes with apple butter, nut butters, fresh fruit, or a touch of maple syrup.
The crepes can be rolled with the edge on the bottom or folded into quarters.
For savory crêpes, I leave out the cinnamon. Savory crêpes make a delicious wrap as a breakfast sandwich. Add different flavors to the savory crêpe batter: cheese, herbs, or spices.
The crêpes can be frozen. Separate each crêpe with wax paper. Wrap them well in wax paper and then in aluminum foil.
Vegans may use egg substitute and soy milk.
This healthy crêpe recipe is featured in Pennywise Platter Thurdays at http://www.thenourishinggourmet.com/
Copyright 2009 by Nurturing Wisdom