When I first started this blog, I announced it to my family and friends by writing “I have jumped on the chuck wagon.” At times, I feel this is a particularly apt way of describing my place in the world of food related blogs. What is there to set me apart? Food and writing has certainly been done and so has my original gimmick of literary cooking…that has also fallen to the side. I look out at the world and feel myself to be just one small grain of salt in a large container of Morton’s Iodized.
To console myself maybe I’ll wander the aisles of a favorite grocery store and start to believe that I’m not table salt, but instead a grain of Himalayan pink salt. I will take this primarily aesthetic seasoning for instead, here is a crowded, but not over-crowded, world I fit into. After all, the common cook is about personal satisfaction more than all about culinary perfection.
This is all to say that when I watched the trailer for Julie and Julia and saw the line where a caller says to Amy Adams as Julie Powell “Do you have any real power? I only want to speak with someone who has power,” and saw the pictures of cooking I knew this was a movie I had to watch surrounded by the friends and family who share my love of food and powerless jobs. I also knew that while watching it on DVD I would eat Sweet Crêpes made from the recipe taken from my mom’s copy of From Julia Child’s Kitchen. Alas, our powerless jobs keep us busy and on odd schedules and so, only my parents would share these crêpes. (Hi Mom and Dad. Wave, wave, wave.)
Crêpes are another one of those dishes ridiculously easy to make. Really, if you can make a pancake or an omelet you can certainly make these. Flipping crêpes is actually easier than with either of the other two. I also love the slow process of making them – swirling the batter over the bottom of the skillet, watching mountains and valleys replace the flatness as it browns. I find the simple methodical process relaxing and favorable to contemplation. (Did you read the beginning?)
Making one at a time is really the hardest part. This recipe makes about 16-18 5 ½” crêpes. I made 12 7”-ish. This many can take awhile and on a lazy afternoon off this is fine, but not so enjoyable for a breakfast or a dinner party dessert. This is also easily fixed. Use a larger skillet, pour in more batter and fold into fourths.
2 eggs and 2 egg yolks
½ c water
½ c milk
3 T dark sesame oil or melted butter
¼ c kirsch, orange juice or triple sec
¼ c sugar
1/8 t salt
1 c flour
In bowl, beat eggs, then liquids, sugar and salt. Gradually beat in the flour. Let rest 20 minutes. Heat small non-stick skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Spoon a ladle full or about ¼ c into middle of skillet. Swirl around bottom of pan until coated and liquid no longer runs. When the edges are browned and the crêpe peels off easily, flip. Let brown a couple minutes on other side. The first one probably won’t be the prettiest, but it is a good snack for the cook while making the remainder.
Crêpes are also great for their versatility. Fill with whatever you want – jams, fruit, chocolate… Maybe crêpe cake? Hmm, actually that may be my next birthday cake. Layers of Nutella, jam or caramel, almond slivers then topped with sugar and broiled for a minute and being careful of burnt edges.
Getting back to the purpose.
This particular batch was topped with a strawberry sauce, mostly because there was an open bag of frozen strawberries I wanted out of my freezer.
From the Pantry Strawberry-Balsamic Sauce: ¼ cup frozen strawberries thawed and mashed. Then combine with 1 spoonful of sugar and ½ a spoonful of balsamic vinegar. Heat in a small saucepan over medium to low heat until slightly thickened or for about the length of time it takes to make the crêpes.