Most people who come here will probably know the American pancake. Thick, fluffy, and luscious. Crêpes are the American pancake’s European cousin: thin, delicate, and crispy on the edges. They’re both amazing, but the crêpes are more versatile, as they can be used both with savory and sweet fillings, making it a dish for any meal. This is my sourdough crêpes recipe.
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The history of crêpes
As origin stories about food go, they are probably mostly just that: a good story, but here goes:
The story goes that in 13th-century Brittany, France a housewife accidentally dropped some gruel onto a hot cooktop. Since every food was precious, she decided to eat it instead of throwing it out, and thus the crêpe was invented by accident.
The other story concerns buckwheat crêpes, which is usually how a savory crêpe (or galette) is eaten to this day in France. Buckwheat was introduced in 12th-century France. And just like the previous story, a very thin buckwheat porridge was spilled onto a cooktop and accidentally turned into a crêpe.
When it all comes down to it, it’s probably a food myth, but it’s fun nonetheless.
The etymology of the word crêpe
The delicate pancakes are known as crêpes in France and many other languages have imported this word to describe this food. The word derives from Old French crespe which can be traced back to the Latin words crispa or crispus meaning curled.
So what is Shrove Tuesday all about?
Shrove Tuesday is a day observed by many Christians. It’s a day of self-examination and considering what you need to repent.
It’s celebrated by eating a pancake breakfast. In Denmark it’s called “White Tuesday” because of the upcoming Lent it was a way to get rid of the white ingredients that weren’t allowed during the 40-day fast going all the way to Easter.
The date is always 47 days before Easter Sunday. That means the upcoming Shrove Tuesday will be on the 13th of February, 2024.
The batter in this sourdough crepes recipe
|Total weight||1199 grams|
This is a batter, not dough. The hydration is somewhere around 285%, but it’s very important to be able to spread it easily and make a very thin crêpe.
I’ve enriched the dough with butter, eggs, and sugar (in the case of the sweet variety). I use beer to accentuate the crispy edges, as the alcohol evaporates quickly. Since the crêpes are so thin, I’ve opted to use a bit high salt content at 3.3%.
If you’d like a more ‘French’ crêpe, you could substitute the beer for white wine. If you want or need to make make the crêpes alcohol-free you can substitute the beer with alcohol-free beer (for the taste, but not crisp) or just whole milk.
To get that amazing taste from the fermented flour in the starter, the amount of pre-fermented flour is high. If your discard is super sour, it may impact the taste. Just so you know.
|250g||starter (100% hydration)||208.3%|
|320g||whole milk (3.5%)||266.7%|
If you want to study the formula, change the quantity, or do other things you can do it in my Bread Calculator.
Ideas from crêpes fillings
- Your Favorite Stew
- Ham & Cheese
- Sautéed Mushrooms
- Fajita Chicken
- Spinach, Feta & Steak
- Salmon, Cream Cheese, and Chivies
- Eggs, Bacon, and Cheddar
- Sauteed Mushrooms & Onions
- Goat Cheese, Prosciutto, and Fresh Chilies
- Jam on the inside, sugar on top (use strawberry for the most iconic Danish crêpe)
- Lemon juice and sugar (the new Danish favorite)
- Brown sugar (my childhood favorite)
- Nutella and Bananas
- Peanut Butter and Jelly
- Apple Curd
- Fresh Fruit and Whipped Cream
- Chocolate Chips
- Dulce de Leche
The conclusion of this sourdough crepes recipe
The conclusion of this sourdough crepes recipe.
So, what makes a good crêpe? Well, in my humble opinion, these are:
- Thin and delicate discs with a delicious taste
- Crispy edges
- Fully fermented flavor
- Easy to roll or fill with stuff without them breaking
The crêpes fulfill all of those things to a tee.
The addition of sourdough starter, just makes them so much better than the regular crêpe recipe I’ve been using all my adult life.
Please share this sourdough crepes recipe on social media
This is my recipe for sourdough crepes. If you like the recipe please consider sharing it with like-minded pancake lovers on social media.
If you make it and post it on Instagram, please tag me as @foodgeek.dk so I can see it. That would make me very happy.
- polyscience the control °freak optional, but gives amazing control over your cooking
- 320 g whole milk 3.5%
- 120 g beer can be replaced with milk
- 80 g butter salted
- 4 g salt
- 250 g starter
- 225 g egg whole
- 120 g all-purpose flour traditional savory crêpes are made with buckwheat flour
- 80 g sugar optional, only for sweet crêpes
- Put the milk and beer into a medium bowl. Pour the melted butter into the liquid. Mix it.
- Pour the rest of the ingredients into the bowl and mix until you have a smooth batter.
- Cover the bowl and put it into the fridge for at least half an hour, but you can easily do it overnight.
Make the crêpes
- Heat a skillet to medium-high, 150°C, 300°F. Using a crêpe pan is easier since the sides are not as tall.
- Melt a bit of butter on the pan. Pour about 60 ml/¼ of batter onto the pan and swirl it around to make a round shape.
- Cook until it's nice and browned and the edges lets go of the pan. Flip it over using a spatula in one confident swoop.
- Continue cooking until the other side is brown as well.
- Place the crêpe between two dinner plates to keep them warm as you cook. Note that the crêpes will lose the crispy edges if you do this.
- Repeat for the rest of the batter.