I share with you my current favourite recipe for easy French crepes, which is one of our staple family breakfasts.
Having grown up in France, crepes were a regular food at home. We ate them for “La fete de la Chandeleur” of course in February, but we would also have them as a light dinner, filled with grated cheese, ham and a fried egg.
At uni, I could make just about enough batter for a few pancakes for myself with just one egg, making it a quick, easy and super cheap meal. The ideal student dinner!
When I lived in Paris for my third year at uni, I would have to walk through La Rue Mouffetard, which had a delicious shop selling enormous pancakes, made from fresh for each order. I enjoyed a fair amount of these on my way to lectures, filled with delicious chocolate-hazelnut spread. A true treat on cold Parisian days.
Having returned to France, the kids are often treated to these at school events, with either sugar fillings or chocolate-hazelnut spread.
A Perfect Breakfast
We have a few breakfast meals we like to have at weekends, when we enjoy a late lazy breakfast. Naturally, one of these meals is crepes.
We all have our preferred toppings. Siena can get through a whole jar of chocolate spread if we let her. Barry likes sugar and lemon. Hugo likes honey. I personally love dark chocolate chips combined fresh fruit such as blueberries, raspberries or bananas.
We also seem to each have our favourite way of eating crepes. From rolling them to folding them into triangles, and trying to eat them all in one go…
Getting the Batter Right
I have had many fights with pancake batter over the years… From lumps in the batter, a batter that’s too thick or too thin, crepes that tear apart as soon as you try and flip them… you name it, it’s probably happened to me!
It can still be a little hit and miss, but over the years, these have become a staple family meal.
I am constantly trying out new recipes and tweaking existing ones. As a result, I have recently found a recipe that seems to work everytime : an easy French crepe recipe.
As long as I don’t attempt these before my first morning coffee, they usually come out (mostly) perfect everytime!
Booze Free Recipe
When searching for recipes for French crepes in France, it’s incredible the amount of recipes that include alcohol such as rhum or beer (or both!). Logic behind this explains that it helps to keep the batter light…
When thinking of boozey crepes, I always think of this video by French chef Raymond Olivier from the 1950s. It’s not a recipe for the faint hearted! Have you see it before? It’s not to be missed.
Family Friendly Crepes
Luckily for you, I’ve got a recipe that’s more family friendly!
Easy French Crepes
- 250 grams Fine Flour (“Farine Fluide”)
- 2 eggs
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 tsp sugar (can be replaced by a little vanilla extract or my favourite: “fleur d’oranger” (orange blossom extract))
- 500 ml milk
- 1 glass water
- 25 grams butter (the recipe calls for “beurre noisette”).
- Your favourite choice of toppings.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the flour, salt, sugar, eggs.
- Add half of the milk and whisk together, before adding the rest of the milk. Keep whisking until you get a smooth batter. At this point the batter should be a little thick but smooth.
- Melt the butter in a small sauce pan, until its starts browning a little and smells a little nutty (the French call this “beurre noisette”, which translates as hazelnut butter). Once you have your “beurre noisette”, add it to the batter and whisk.
- At this point, add a little water and whisk again. You can add up to a small glass of water altogether. This will help the batter remain light and allow for thin crepes.
- Leave the batter to rest for a few minutes whilst you get the pan ready. You can get specific pans for crepes, these are usually extra flat and thick so as to ensure even heat. The secret to successful crepes is a very hot pan, and a little butter melted before each crepe. Once the pan is sufficiently hot, the crepe will cook very quickly. As soon as the crepe looks set on the top, flip over. It will only need a few seconds to cook on the other side.
- It should be a little brown on each side, then it’s on the next one!
- Bon appétit!
Do you eat crepes?What are your family’s preferred toppings?
Let me know how you get on if you decide to give this recipe try and whether you’ve made any tweaks to it.