We ate some shockingly large portions of ice cream yesterday. Portions so large I couldn’t finish mine, and John couldn’t help me. This never happens. Those photos down there, those are smalls. Smalls, people. Just imagining what the large might look like gives me goosebumps. You too can suffer from self-inflicted ice cream overdose by driving a mere 45 minutes outside Boston to Kimball’s Farm in Weston, MA. Be sure to bring your appetite and your most loose fitting pants.
I mention yesterday’s ice cream pilgrimage in the context of today’s recipe because it is a perfect ice cream antidote, and exactly the kind of meal I’m craving these days. A lighthearted lunch or dinner that, eaten outside next to a big salad and a cold glass of white wine, leaves you wanting to skip around the back yard. (The ice cream, on the other hand, left us searching for the most proximal flat surface on which to take a long nap.) Of course this recipe can do double duty as breakfast or brunch too, simply insert a mimosa where once stood the wine.
The crepes here are a more substantial version of the ones I make regularly – the addition of buckwheat gives them depth and texture that lends them well to savory preparations. I can’t get enough eggs this time of year. It seems every meal I make is some combination of soft cooked egg and spring vegetables. Here, the herbs provide flavor and the sour cream amplifies the creamy softness of the eggs. Feel free to add some green vegetables to the mix also – finely chopped asparagus or any sort of spring greens would be welcome.
Though the savory incarnation is my preference here, I always snack on a few crepes with jam as I cook – I love them with Dalmatia sour cherry spread. If you like your crepes sweet, I would imagine these would be pretty charming with any sort of cooked stone fruits – some peaches and cherries roasted in a little white wine and a vanilla bean maybe.
The crepe recipe makes 12-14 crepes and serves 4-6. Crepes keep well wrapped at room temperature for 2-3 days, and can be reheated in a hot pan. I wrote the filling recipe for one, but it can be easily multiplied up – just make sure you have all your ingredients prepped and ready to go before you start cooking.
For the Crepes
Makes 12-14 eight to ten inch crepes
- 1 ½ cups milk, whole or 2%
- ½ tbsp sugar
- Pinch of salt
- ½ cup buckwheat flour
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- 2 eggs
- 2 tbsp melted unsalted butter
Make the Crepe Batter
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until well combined and uniform. Many crepe recipes suggest you make the batter the day before you intend to cook your crepes to allow the flours to absorb some of the liquid* – this will make spreading and flipping your crepes easier. However, I’m not sure what you gain in ease is enough to compensate for what you loose: namely, the ability to enjoy crepes on a whim anytime you like. If you remember to make the batter day ahead, all the better, but if you, like me, wake up one morning craving crepes, I say just go for it.*If you do make your batter day ahead, you’ll want to measure a scant ½ cup of each of the flours because, as the flours absorb the liquid overnight, the batter will naturally thicken.
Cook the Crepes
This can be done well ahead of time as the crepes re-heat very well. Heat a small non-stick skillet (8-10 inches in diameter) over medium heat. Add a small pat of butter to the pan and tilt the pan to coat (do this only for the first crepe.) Pour a scant ¼ cup of batter into the center of the hot pan and quickly tilt the pan to spread the batter evenly across the bottom of the pan. This takes some finessing to get just right; I generally try and tilt only clockwise or counterclockwise, never both ways, so the batter coats the pan evenly and never runs back on itself. Don’t worry if you muck up the first few crepes, it happens to everyone – I just eat them with a little jam before anyone notices!) When the crepe is brown around the edges and mostly set (this will only take about 30-45 seconds), carefully loosen the edge of the crepe from the pan by running a small off set spatula around the crepe. Flip the crepe quickly either using the spatula or your fingers. I pull one edge of the crepe up with the spatula and then grasp the crepe lightly with both hands and turn it. Cook an additional 30-45 seconds on the other side. The crepe should have some color – golden brown, but not too dark, around the edges and lacey looking. Adjust the heat on your pan accordingly before you make the next crepe. Repeat with the rest of the crepe batter. Stack the finished crepes on a plate and set aside.
For Serving the Crepes
Makes 1 portion
- 2 large eggs
- Butter for the pan
- 2 cooked buckwheat crepes (above)
- 1 to 2 tbsp grated cheese, such as gruyere or comte
- 1 tbsp crème fraiche or sour cream
- Fresh chopped fresh herbs (chives, parsley, cilantro, dill, tarragon, thyme, chervil, and/or mint)
- Salt and pepper
Begin by making the eggs. Heat a small pan over low-medium heat and add about 1 tbsp butter. Meanwhile, whisk the eggs in a small bowl. Once the butter melts, add the eggs to the pan. Keep the heat nice and low, and stir the eggs infrequently. Once they start to come together, cook a few seconds more, and then remove from the heat while still under-done. The eggs will set up as they sit.
Meanwhile, Heat another small skillet over medium heat. Add a crepe to the pan and sprinkle over a little grated cheese. Heat just until the cheese is melted, transfer to a plate, and then repeat with a second crepe.
Divide the scrambled eggs between the two cheese topped crepes. Dot the eggs with the sour cream or crème fraiche, sprinkle over the herbs, and season with plenty of salt and pepper. Fold the crepes over the eggs and serve at once.