Crepes: French Pancakes

This is (some of) what I was doing last night at the new resto.

It would be good to have a small old very used cast-iron frying pan whose bottom is "crepe-sized". Or teflon might work. About 6 or 7 inches.
These reheat well; they're good cold; and probably freeze okay.
Makes a whole lot; about 40 or so

  • 1/2 kg flour, general purpose (1 lb)
  • 1 l milk, whole (1 quart)
  • 8 eggs, whole, medium
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 pepper
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 T olive oil
  1. Flour, milk, eggs in a big bowl
  2. Mix well (with a big stick mixer if you've got it)
  3. Add salt, pepper, olive oil
  4. Stir (I used a fork)
  1. 1 T oil into the pan (this can't be done on a griddle)
  2. Heat - really hot - almost smoking
  3. Swirl oil around the surface and sides of pan & pour off excess oil
  4. Ladle (yes, use a ladle; it works - pouring doesn't) some mixture into the hot pan
    • to cover the bottom - thinly
    • probably you have to swirl the pan slightly to cover the whole bottom
  5. When the top has started to set... is not all liquidy... the bottom will be done
    • Shake or tap or bang the pan to loosen the crepe
  6. Flip into the air and catch the crepe, midair, with the pan, top side down
    • wait for the crepe to come to the pan; don't raise the pan to find the crepe
    • or use a wide, long spatula that is at least as long as the crepe
  7. Cook the 2nd side of the crepe for just a few (10?) seconds to set the batter and color slightly
  8. Flip onto a plate and proceed to the next crepe
  1. The first crepe of each batch is usually a disaster
  2. Don't make them thick. This is a thin batter - not pancakes. More like the consistency of my mom's christmas gravy [not the color, the consistency]
  3. Flipping in the air is really not as hard as it seems; and looks real fancy once you get the hang of it.
  4. If they land badly, half folded, in the pan you can manually rearrange them
  5. Broken crepes taste good too
  6. This is even more fun when you have 2 pans going at once
  7. Crepes can be filled (maybe I'll do some recipes for that later) or rolled and decorated (e.g. pour some coulis or liqueur over them, sprinkle with fine sugar)
  8. Don't buy a fancy auto-folding electric crepe maker. Get a nice little cast iron one instead and pass it, eventually, onto your grandkids

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