French Pastry Week // Crêpes with Fruit and Cream

Day Two of Pastry Week is upon us, and today we're going for something a bit more, um, healthy.  Because fruit!  Health food.

A few years ago, when I was a teenager in a rather large family, I would occasionally pull out all of the stops and get up way too early to make a lavish breakfast.  There were 12 in my family, and then throw in the friend hanging out for the weekend or overnight guest, and we are talking about piles of thin, light crêpes to feed the masses.  It may have been a lot work, but it won me quite a bit of popularity, so... worth it?  Yeah, I think so.

Crêpes are quite popular in France too, partly because of their versatility.  I've stuffed them with strawberries and cream here and finished off with a drizzle of ganache (of course), but there are a million and one things you could put inside.  Which is why there are crêperies on so many street corners in Paris.  It's easy to pop in for a quick meal or snack and find something that's not only satisfying, but light and tasty too.

Add some thinly shaved meat with veggies and cheese, and you have a rather fancy version of a sandwich.  Skip the cream and go with just fruit, and breakfast is served.  Go crazy with the nutella, nuts, ice cream, and fruits, and you have dessert.  Which means you could eat crêpes three or four times day.  Doesn't that blow your mind?

I've used Julia Child's recipe, because that just seems appropriate for an American cooking a French classic.  The batter should sit for at least an hour for the flour to absorb the liquids, but can be left overnight as well.

Crêpes

From Julia Child's The Way to Cook
Yields about 12 8-10 crêpes

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 3 Tbsp. melted butter

Place flour in a large mixing bowl, then whisk as you slowly pour in milk and water. Continue whisking until smooth, then beat in the eggs, salt, and melted butter.  Refrigerate for an hour to overnight

To makes the crepes, places a 10 inch skillet on a burner set to medium-high.  Allow the pan to heat until water droplets dance or sputter when dropped in the pan.   Brush it quickly with butter.  Pour a quarter cup of batter into the pan and immediately begin turing to spread spread the batter into a thin, round layer over the pan.  Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the edges are beginning to curl up and turn golden.  Flip it over and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes, or until the second side is golden brown.  

Remove from pan and repeat with the rest of the batter until it's all gone.  Arrange fillings on one half and fold in quarters, or arrange them down the center and roll the crêpe.

Bon appetit!

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