Monday, April 1, 2013

Crêpes avec Crème de Marrons (sweet chestnut cream)

This is by far my favorite breakfast (mon petit déjeuner préféré).  The filling is sweet and rich without being overwhelming and the crêpe is light and buttery.  It's perfect in the winter but delicious all year round and a definite family favorite.  If tree nuts are an issue, almost any fruit filling will work as well.  A sprinkle of powdered sugar and you have a heavenly way to start your day!

La Recette:


2 eggs  (room temperature)
3/4 cup milk (room temperature)
1/2 cup water
1 cup gluten free flour (I make my own blend but gluten free bisquick is great too)
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 tablespoon sugar

Crème de Marrons-

16 oz. cooked chestnuts in a jar
1.5 cups heavy whipping cream
1 vanilla bean - seeds scraped
1.5 tablespoons cognac
1/2 cup light brown sugar

Place all of the crêpe ingredients in a food processor and blend until combined.  Refrigerate for a least an hour or overnight (I like to make my batter the night before so it's ready to go in the morning).  Heat a non-stick pan and add a small amount of unsalted butter - maybe 1/4 T.  Coat the pan evenly.  Take roughly a 1/8 cup of batter (depending on the pan size) and dump in the center of the pan.  Quickly swirl to spread evenly.  It should be VERY thin.  If there is too much you can dump a little back into the batter bowl.  It takes a few times to get it right but it's easy to get the hang of.  Cook for about a minute/side.  Move to a cutting board and lay flat.  Continue until all of your batter is used.  

In a medium saucepan combine the chestnuts, cream, vanilla bean and seeds, cognac and sugar.  Bring to a boil, quickly turn the heat down and then let it simmer for 10 minutes.  Take out the vanilla bean (save this - you can rinse it out, let it dry and make vanilla sugar).  Combine all the ingredients in a food processor/blender and blend until smooth.  It should be very creamy - a soft frosting like consistency.  

Spread a least 2 tablespoons on your crêpe and fold and half and then half again (small triangle shape).   Sprinkle with a small amount of confectioners sugar.  Enjoy!

*If you have a dairy allergy, use water instead of cream for the filling.  It won't be as "creamy" but still really good.  If you use water add another 1/4 cup of sugar.  Also use earth balance butter in the crêpes and you can substitute water or soy milk for the milk in the crêpes as well.  

*If you can't use chestnuts take 1 cup of your favorite fruit and 1 tablespoon of sugar.  Combine the fruit and sugar in a small saucepan and heat on low until the sugar dissolves and the fruit starts to break down.  Or you can simply sprinkle fresh fruit on top of the crêpes.  

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