As a novice baker, I tend to bake within my comfort zone. So, instead of looking far and wide for new recipes, I take comfort in putting together sweet breads (more here), flatbread (more here), and sometimes even cakes (more here). All was well in my little kitchen, until, unexpectedly, my boyfriend put in the rare culinary request for crepes.
I have never made anything resembling a crepe. The last time I had even made a waffle from scratch was literally 8 years ago (healthy looking right??).
If I make one sweet bread, then the process for the next is no longer a mystery. But, with the crepe, I had no experience to fall back on. Not wanting to royally screw up the one dessert request that has ever been raised to me, I took baking these crepes deadly seriously.
I got on Google and looked into a few recipes. Luckily, there were many beginner recipes out there and the list of ingredients was rather simple (unsalted butter, all-purpose flour, sugar, salt, whole milk, water, eggs, and vanilla extract). I learned through my searches that making a quality crepe is all about temperature and timing.
What makes a quality crepe (by Raven)
|Quality Crepe||Less-than-quality Crepe|
|Body: thin, soft|
Taste: mild, slightly sweet
Shape: round/ symmetrical
Other: faint crisp edges
|Body: thick, rubbery|
Taste: too sugary or too salty
Shape: bloated potato
Other: sad looking, would be chosen last for the dodgeball team if human
To make a quality crepe, the temperature of the ingredients is important and the timing for cooling the batter and cooking is vital. Following this recipe from Sally’s Baking Addiction, it is recommended that all liquid ingredients (eggs included) be mixed at room temperature and the butter be melted and cooled before added. Once all of the ingredients are radiating the right amount of thermal energy, then to combine the ingredients, all one needs to do is to mix everything in a blender for 20 to 30 seconds. This step was a cinch and my blender was luckily the perfect size for the job. (You may, of course, hand mix the batter, however, this process will take several minutes and a lot of elbow grease). Once everything is mixed, it is recommended that the batter be cooled in the refrigerator for a period of 30 minutes to 1 day.
After allowing the batter to chill for 45 minutes, I turned on the stove to medium heat, greased a pan, and then poured out 3 tablespoons of the batter and allowed the liquid to spread on the hot surface in all directions. After baking one side for about 90 seconds and the other for about 45 seconds, I slid the crepe off the pan onto a plate to behold my creation.
There is a Russian phrase “pervyy blin komom,” which translates to “the first pancake is a blob.” Conversationally, this phrase has come to mean that the first attempt is usually rocky, but, that one should not be deterred from trying again. Well, my first crepe was rubbery komom, but I quickly learned from my mistake and did not do half badly on my first batch.
With fresh fruit, chocolate, whipped cream, and a few other toppings, our little soiree for two, featuring the crepes went better than expected!
Likely, these first crepes will not be the last 🙂