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Davis, California

Monday, October 25, 2021

Column: Eat your heart out

I love crepes, and I love making them at home because they’re much smaller than when you get them at a restaurant. And when they’re smaller you can try a greater variety of fillings.

However, the only issue I have when making them at home is never having all the right ingredients. I don’t have a set recipe I follow, because every time I’ve made them I usually have to improvise.

I suggest using AllRecipes.com whenever you are in need of any recipe. This website has a large database and allows users to leave comments. I highly recommend reading comments because you’ll find many suggestions and improvements upon the base recipe.

When my roommate asked me to teach her how to make crepes, I found myself staring at this website trying to discern the best recipe to use. Do I choose the one with the least ingredients? The one with the fewest steps? The one with the best rating or most reviews? How about all of them? Yes, all of them work.

What I mean by this is that I read all of the recipes on the first page and decided to combine them – not to have a massive stockpile of crepes to feed a small army, but for the best results.

When combining recipes, don’t just look at what you like the most. The ratios are the most important thing. If you mess up the ratios you could have really dry or lumpy or watery crepes. One thing I noticed in the crepe recipes was a 1:1 ratio between cups of flour and cups of milk.

Also, the more cups of flour and milk, the more eggs the recipe called for. While that may sound like common sense, don’t lie – someone wouldn’t have caught that. Other variations in the recipes were quantities of butter, sugar, salt, presence of vanilla and presence of baking powder. The recipes also varied in the way in which ingredients are combined, but I always think it’s a good idea to combine dry ingredients with each other, then the wet ingredients with each other, and then add dry to the wet. (“Wet ingredients” usually means butter and sugar if they recipe wants them creamed, in addition to eggs, milk and vanilla).

After about an hour of analysis of the various recipes and my kitchen, I came up with our recipe:

Sabrina’s Sunday Morning Crepes

1 ¼ cups flour

¼ cup sugar

3 eggs

½ teaspoon of salt

2 teaspoons of vanilla extract

1 cup of milk

½ cup of heavy whipping cream

2 tablespoons of melted butter

As mentioned before, mix all the dry ingredients in one bowl, and the wet ingredients in another. The sugar goes with the dry ingredients. Then you add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing with a whisk. The batter should be runny – the runnier the batter the lighter your crepes will turn out.

You should coat the pan with oil or cooking spray and have it lightly heated before pouring the batter. Keep the pan on a medium heat, the batter is light enough that a high heat will burn them quickly and ruin everything.

Use a ½ cup to pour the batter in the pan and tilt the pan so that the batter spreads out. If you’re new to crepes and have trouble flipping things you’ll probably want to keep the batter from touching the edges of the pan. The smaller the crepe, the easier it will be to flip. When the crepe changes from a light brown to medium brown, it is ready to be flipped! Flipping can be challenging with crepes because they’re sturdier than eggs but not as thick pancakes. Don’t be discouraged if it takes a few tries to get a hole-free, wrinkle-free crepe that doesn’t bubble.

One important thing to remember is that this recipe is for dessert crepes, not savory crepes. The crepes have a sweetness to them from the sugar and vanilla. Not all recipes call for sugar but we chose to add it in our recipe to bring out the sugar in the nutella, bananas and whipped cream that we chose to fill the crepes with. Other suggestions for fillings include berries, custard, butterscotch pudding or apple slices that have been microwaved with butter and cinnamon sugar on top.

This recipe will yield about 10 crepes from a 10-inch skillet. You can feed four girls or two boys with that amount of crepes. Now go, impress your lover, parents or roommates with your newly acquired culinary feat.

SABRINA VIGIL bakes with experience, not expertise. Send her your experience at svvigil@ucdavis.edu

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