The word crepe might suggest haute cuisine, but I guess the word pancake would sound pretty exotic to a Frenchman, too. The truth is, super-thin crepes are practical, versatile and convenient. They lend themselves to many different fillings and can easily be made in advance and frozen. With these no-fail tips and go-to recipes, you can transform your kitchen into a Parisian creperie in no time.
How to Make a Crepe
Recipe: Basic Crepes >
Spoon 2-3 tbsp. crepe batter into a hot, greased skillet.
Lift pan to gently swirl the batter so it evenly coats the skillet.
With a non-metal spatula, carefully loosen the crepe and turn it over. It’s perfectly OK to use your fingers if necessary.
- No crepe pan? No worries. Your favorite 8-inch nonstick skillet will do. You’ll have to handle the skillet often while making crepes, so select one with a rubber or silicone handle for comfort and protection from the pan’s high temperature.
- Refrigerating the batter for 1 hour lets the gluten in the flour relax and bond to the eggs and milk, which gives the finished product a more tender texture. In other words, it leads to extra yumminess.
- Use butter in the skillet sparingly, wiping away any excess melted butter with a paper towel. Too much melted butter causes crepes to brown unevenly and makes the edges crisp.
- Cook each crepe over medium heat until batter dries and loses its shine, about 20 seconds. Then flip the crepe and cook another 15-20 seconds.
- Keep your crepes warm by stacking them in an ovenproof dish, covering them and putting them into an oven set at 175°.
- To freeze crepes, layer them individually between squares of waxed paper. Place in a freezer container; seal and freeze for up to 2 months. Be sure to label and date the package.
Sweet & Savory Crepe Ideas
Fill a crepe with a few spoonfuls of cherry pie filling and whipped cream; roll or fold up and drizzle with hot fudge sauce or melted chocolate. Garnish with chocolate shavings.
Better than PB&J
Smear a warm crepe with peanut butter and marshmallow fluff, add sliced bananas and chopped peanuts; roll or fold up and enjoy.
Leftovers Go Luxe
Breathe new life into leftover dishes such as stir-fry or stew. Reheat them in the microwave and spoon them down the middle of a crepe; roll or fold and devour.
More Tips & Crepe Recipes
Recipe: Strawberry Creme Crepes >
Recipe: Chocolate Crepes with Raspberry Sauce >
More How to Cook Techniques >