Swiss Pancakes (Crepes)

The crepe is a common menu item in several European countries, French, German, Swiss. The basic recipe is the same. My friends mother was German and she always made German pancakes, they has a twist of lemon in them. The Swiss pancakes traditionally have Lingon berries on them, and the french like to make a formal affair of them, for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Any way you eat them they are divine. We like ours with butter and Lingon berries, lemon and powdered sugar, fresh fruit, or our favorite jam. The options are endless. Blintzes are also made from crepes.

The basic recipe is as follows per person

1 egg
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon sugar and a dash of salt

I usually make enough for 4 people, which is usually enough for my family, you can always add one more portion per person as friends file in the door wanting more. Any extra crepes you make can be frozen and used later, however mine never last that long. If you are making a savory crepe with filling omit the sugar.

My Method: Heat griddle to 325 degrees or medium heat. cover griddle with butter, I use a cube fresh from the fridge, tear off half the paper and smear it over the griddle. Next pour on 1/2 cup of batter, using the bottom of a metal measuring cup, lightly spread the batter in a circular motion starting from the center out.

Heat a few minutes,top will have a dull look, then using spatula slip under the crepe and flip. Let crepe cook a few minutes until lightly brown. I put a plate under the griddle to keep the crepes warm.

This does take practice and I usually lose the first ones especially when I am trying to get the proper heat. If the batter doesn’t spread the griddle is not hot enough, if the batter is cooking and turning brown it is too hot. These scraps are good to eat even if they are not pretty.

Fold over when you remove from griddle on to plate, top with melted butter and lingon berries. Or your favorite topping.

Alternate method: My sister in law and sister both have crepe makers, both of different techniques.

Type 1 looks like an upside down saute pan, the cooking surface is rounded, you dip this in the batter and the crepe cooks right on the surface. When the edges begin to turn brown you remove it with a spatula. This method only browns one side which is just fine. The batter does need to be a bit thinner with this method.

Type 2 has a flat round cooking surface and a wooden tool that kind of looks like a sickle. The surface is sprayed with cooking spray and the batter is poured on the hot griddle, then using the tool in a circular motion smooth the batter around. If you have ever eaten crepes in a crepe restaurant you have seen them use this method.

Fillings or toppings

Fresh fruit, berries, lemon juice, powdered sugar, nutella, cooked apples, ice cream, whipped cream, meat filling. Possibilities are endless