Crêpes are always a firm favourite; the elegant relative to the pancake has endless sweet or savoury fillings which make for a versatile dish that can cater to almost anyone’s taste.
But what distinguishes a crêpe from a pancake, I hear you ask? Well, crêpes have a more rich flavour and a silkier texture, and the lack of baking powder or soda gives the crêpe its trademark thin and flat appearance.
Although quite a simple recipe to master, it still takes a little care and attention. Don’t be scared off if your first crêpe turns out over ‘crisped’ and particularly buttery, this is quite common and should pave the way for the perfect batch to follow. The desired result is crêpes that are light, airy, evenly browned and a little crispy around the edges.
As most of the ingredients are kitchen staples, there really is no excuse not to have a go! With that in mind, here is my guide to the classic French crêpe...
lFirst of all you’ll need to grab a few ingredients: 125g of plain flour, 1 free range egg, 1 teaspoon of melted butter, 300mlof milk and a knob of butter for frying.
lNow, place the flour into a large bowl, then add the egg, milk and melted butter and whisk until smooth. (In order to achieve the best crêpes; your batter should then be put in the fridge and allowed to cool for an hour or so. This will relax the gluten in the mixture resulting in light and airy crêpes.)
lRemove your batter from the fridge after an hour, and grab a heavy bottomed pan and heat it until medium-hot. Then melt your knob of butter in the pan.
lNext add some of the mixture to the centre of the pan aiming for about a third of the surface to be covered. lQuickly pick up the pan and swirl the batter until you have achieved an even sized circle covering the rest of the pan.
lCook this until the edges have started to turn brown - usually around one to two minutes - then flip to cook the other side. Make sure you don’t flip the crêpe too soon or there’s a good chance the crêpe will tear.
lCook on this side for around another minute then take a look at the underside. If it has started to brown, you can remove it from the pan. Place the crêpe on greaseproof paper in the oven on a very low heat to keep warm.
lContinue with the rest of the batter; remember you may need to add a little more butter between every few crêpes to ensure they don’t stick. Lastly finish with your choice of topping and enjoy!
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