Making Crêpes

What’s the difference between crêpes, blintzes, blini and just plain ol’ skinny pancakes? Don’t answer that. I don’t want to know. Probably much less than the French, Slavs, Russians or English would ever want to admit.

Ultimately the only difference between all of them is context. Blintzes go with applesauce, blini with caviar, pancakes with sugar and lemon (or syrup) and crêpes…well, with just about anything. For indeed in France a crêpe is a medium…for sweet things, savory things and anything in between. Sort of like sandwich bread, it becomes what it contains.


Crêpe Recipe

Crêpes create irrational fear among many non-French cooks. It’s understandable…they’re thin and can tear if they aren’t handled with delicacy. It’s also common to have the first one or two stick or tear while they’re in pan. An under-heated pan is frequently the cause, but so is operator error. Just be patient and after a few tries you’ll be a pro.

Are there any tricks to crêpes? Just make sure to let batter rest as directed to let the bubbles rise out — for bubbles create rigid crêpes and rigid crêpes break when you try to flip or roll them. This recipe is adapted from The Bonne Femme Cookbook by Wini Moranville.