Crêpes et galettes (Pancakes and Buckwheat Pancakes)

Crêpes et galettes (Pancakes and Buckwheat Pancakes)

The Americans have burgers and hotdogs, the English sandwiches. The French? They have crêpes and galettes. Originally from Brittany, they have been adopted as the national snack, and tiny booths serving hot discs of doughy goodness can be found on virtually every Parisian street (or so it seems). Order a crêpe with a simple sprinkle of sugar, or choose from a list of fillings such as chocolate spread or crême de marrons (sweetened chestnut cream) – or try egg, cheese and ham in a buckwheat pancake. If you’re eating them the traditional way, they should be washed down with a glass of Breton cider.

Ingredients

  • For the crêpes:
  • 200g plain flour
  • a pinch of sugar
  • a pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs
  • about 600ml milk
  • melted butter, for frying
  • For the galettes:
  • 200g buckwheat flour
  • a pinch of salt
  • about 600ml water
  • melted butter, for frying

Instructions

To make the crêpes, mix the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl. Make a well in the centre and crack in the eggs. Gradually mix the ingredients together, adding enough milk for the batter to have the consistency of double cream. Don’t overmix as this will make rubbery crêpes. Refrigerate for a minimum of an hour, or overnight.

Heat a 15–18cm crêpe pan and brush with some melted butter. Stir the batter and add more milk if necessary to give it the consistency of double cream (it may have thickened on standing). Pour 50–60ml of the batter into the pan and quickly swirl the pan so the batter covers the whole of the inside. Cook for 1 minute, loosen around the edge with a spatula, then turn the crêpe over and cook for a further minute. Slide the crêpe out of the pan* , then repeat to make 10–12 crêpes altogether, greasing the pan with butter in between each one.**

To make the galettes, mix the flour and salt in a bowl. Make a well in the centre and gradually mix in the water, adding only enough for the batter to have the consistency of double cream. Don’t overmix as this will make rubbery galettes. Refrigerate for a minimum of an hour, or overnight. Before using, whisk again and add more water if necessary. Cook the same way as the crêpes.

* Don’t worr y – the first one always tends to come out a little wrong. ** To keep the cooked crêpes/galettes warm: place them on a baking tray, cover loosely with aluminium foil and place in the oven at 120°C.

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