A new week calls for a fresh line up of recipes and this go round I determined it high time we dove into the land of crepes. Crepes, for me, are the best of all worlds. They’re versatile, they’re stuffable and, greatest of all, they’re delectable. They work well for company because you can make them ahead of time and they work well for kids because they’re fun to eat.
I mentioned above that you can get a leg up on the meal prep by churning out your edible covers ahead of time. I highly recommend this strategy if you want to break the cooking process up a bit. I usually whip together a batch or two on the weekend and then store them for use throughout the week. To preserve, simply wrap the cooled crepes in plastic wrap, place in a zip lock bag and set in the fridge until you’re ready to use; up to one week. For freezing, add a piece of waxed paper or parchment between each crepe before wrapping in plastic wrap. Place into a freezer bag and store for up to one month.
Enough chatter, let’s get cookin’, shall we? I’m going to throw out two crepe recipes this week; a dinner crepe today and a dessert crepe later this week (gotta feed the sweet tooth).
Ok, the crepe batter. Are you ready to see how easy this is? Grab all your ingredients, toss them into a blender or food processor and spin. Batter, check.
If that’s not simple, then I don’t know what is. Now cover that beautiful batter and let it rest in the fridge for a minimum of two hours. Shh… Don’t tell anyone, but I’ve cut that time short before due to perpetual impatience on my part and the meal still tasted fabulous.
When your mixture is sufficiently rested, it’s time to heat a crepe pan and grease it up with a smidge of butter. And I do mean a smidge. Too much butter and your crepe batter won’t adequately coat the pan.
If you’re using a 9″ crepe pan like mine, grab a 1/3 measuring cup and fill it just below the top with the batter.
Remove the crepe pan from the heat, pour the batter in and swirl it around in a circular motion to cover the pan completely. And because there’s really no proper way to shoot a picture of a hula hooping crepe pan, I’ve put together an academy award winning video demonstrating my skills (or lack thereof).
Cook through for about a minute, flip it over and turn it out. Rinse and repeat until all your batter has been “crepetized”.
But what’s a crepe without a filling? If you said empty, you’re absolutely correct. So let’s remedy that problem and stuff it with some magic, shall we?
Start by browning up a pound of sausage. Add in a little onion, garlic and pepper.
Pour in a glug of red wine and let it reduce.
Repeat with the same amount of chicken stock. Now we’ll drop in a can of beans, a can of tomatoes, a handful of fresh basil and a couple spices.
Let the mixture reduce for another 5 minutes or so and then pull off the heat. Lay out one of your crepes and place a few slices of fresh mozzarella on the bottom (I mixed the order up in the picture so you could better see the cheese. Because honestly, cheese is a beautiful thing.)
Roll them up like a burrito and place into a baking dish. Cook the entire mess of them until they’re all hot and melty delicious-like. Bring on the dinner time crepe. If you think this one looks good, just wait until you see the dessert version.
Just a note, that I’ve snagged a spot in Feastie’s 10 ten food photo competition! Top prize wins a full ride scholarship to Eat, Write Retreat this spring. I’m getting a late start and as a result, the chances of my winning are a bit of a long shot. It never hurts to try though, so if you’d be so kind as to stop by and leave a vote for my morning time granola cups, I’d be so kind as to say Thanks a million!
Sausage Bean and Basil Dinner Time Crepes
Yield: 8 Stuffed Crepes
Total Time: 3 Hours
To save time, crepes can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for up to one week or in the freezer for up to a month.
For the Crepes:
2 Cups Milk
1 Cup All Purpose Flour
1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
2 Tbsp Water
2 Tbsp Melted Butter
For the Filling:
1 Pound Italian Sausage
1 Onion, Chopped
1 Pepper, Chopped
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1/2 Cup Red Wine
1/2 Cup Chicken Stock
1 15 Oz. Can Cannellini Beans
1 15 Oz. Can Diced Tomatoes
1/4 Cup Fresh Basil, Chopped
1/2 tsp Oregano
1/2 tsp Crushed Red Pepper
Salt and Pepper, to Taste
1/2 Pound Fresh Mozzarella
To make the crepes, place all the ingredients into a blender and mix well.
Let rest in the fridge for at least two hours.
Grab up your crepe pan and heat it on medium heat.
Add a sliver of butter into the pan.
For a 9" crepe pan, grab up a 1/3 cup and fill to about 1/4" below the top.
Lift your crepe pan off the heat and pour the batter in. Making a circular motion with the pan, cover with the batter completely.
Place it back on the heat and let it cook for about a minute until no more liquid remains.
Flip the crepe using your fingers, a spatula or whatever works best for you. Cook for about 15 more seconds and remove to cool.
To cook the filling, begin by browning up a pound of Italian sausage.
When the sausage is about 3/4 cooked, add in the onions, pepper and garlic.
Once the sausage is completely cooked, pour in the wine and let reduce for 3 to 4 minutes.
Add in the chicken stock and reduce liquid again for 3-4 minutes.
Add in the tomatoes, basil, oregano and crushed red pepper. Let reduce one more time for about 4 to 5 minutes.The mixture should be creamy but not juicy. Salt and pepper to taste.
Line each crepe with a couple hunks of the fresh mozzarella and top with a couple spoonfuls of the sausage mixture.
Roll them closed, place in a baking dish and cook at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until heated through.