Crespelle ai funghi / Mushroom crêpes

crespelle funghi mushroom crêpes pancakes

Oh dear, oh dear… what has happened here…

Crespelle ai funghi / Mushroom crêpes

crespelle funghi mushroom crêpes pancakes

Pancake flipping is a skill – and Fidget still hasn’t mastered it. And it’s not just the flipping: it’s the batter, too, that you need to get right because your pancakes – we prefer calling them crêpes (the French way) or crespelle (the Italian way) – have to be thin and light but at the same time hold together and not tear apart. But with a little practice it can be done…

Prepare the crespelle first – you can stack them to one side ready for assembly; only afterwards will you need to work on the filling.

Ingredients for the crespelle: 165g flour, 25g butter melted, 320ml milk, 2 eggs, a pinch of salt. In a mixing bowl, start by whisking the eggs, add the milk a little at the time (still whisking), then the flour and the salt to obtain a batter. Finally, incorporate the melted butter and whisk well so there are no lumps. Cover the bowl with cling film and rest the batter in the fridge for at least 30min.

Meanwhile prepare the filling. Ingredients: 10g butter, 10g flour, 165ml milk, a pinch of salt, a pinch of grated nutmeg to make a béchamel sauce plus 300g mushrooms (which you will slice and gently fry in a little oil with a couple of cloves of garlic; remove the garlic when the mushrooms are cooked) and 150g fontina cheese.

Warm the milk gently and add the nutmeg. In a separate pan melt the butter, add the flour and mix well. Start adding the warm milk a little at a time and keep mixing for 5-6min until the béchamel thickens slightly. Add half of the mushrooms to the béchamel and use a hand-blender to obtain a creamy mousse. Adjust nutmeg and seasoning if necessary. Keep aside the remaining half of the mushrooms and the fontina (coarsely grated).

It’s now time to make your crespelle: grease a small frying pan with a little butter (you can make a ‘wad’ of greaseproof paper and use it to spread the butter before each crespella) and pour in a small ladle of batter – swirling the pan quickly so that the batter spreads evenly and thinly. When one side is cooked, flip – or use a spatula / palette knife to turn the crespella and complete the cooking on the other side. Set each finished item aside and keep going until you’ve used up all the batter.

To assemble: on each crespella put a couple of spoons of mushroom béchamel, a sprinkle of fontina and some mushrooms. Fold in half and half again to create a triangle. Place on a lined baking tray and decorate with some mushroom béchamel and a few more mushrooms. When all your crespelle are ready, put them in a pre-heated oven for 5min or so to melt the fontina filling. Serve immediately.

The result is excellent and most of the work can be done in advance, leaving assembly for the last minute. Maybe it’s just the flipping that needs more practice… yes, Fidget?