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Crepes do make such a nice brunch. The beauty of crepes is that when you make a batch you use what you need and freeze the remainder between sheets of wax paper for another lovely meal. The crepes can be made ahead and the filling can be made the day before too. So, all that is required is the assembly & baking. However, you may wish to purchase frozen crepes which is OK too! I think crepes make a nice light dinner too; all you need is a salad and for brunch a Mimosa! Although, I am kind of partial to those Bloody Mary’s too!
Makes 4 Brunch Main Course Servings
For Crepes: (makes 16 crepes). You will need 8 crepes for this recipe
¾ cup unbleached flour
½ tsp. salt
Pinch of grated nutmeg
1 ¼ cups homogenized milk
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
Sift together flour, salt, nutmeg & pepper to taste in a bowl. Whisk together milk, whole egg & egg yolk in a small bowl, then gradually whisk into flour mixture. Force batter through a fine sieve into a bowl.
Heat a dry 7 – 8” nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot, brush very lightly with some melted butter (or use a crumbled up piece of wax paper dipped in butter to grease pan). Place about 2 Tbsp. batter into the skillet, tilting skillet until coated with batter. If batter sets before skillet is coated, reduce heat slightly for next crepe). Cook until underside is lightly browned, 6 – 10 seconds, then loosen crepe with a spatula and flip over. (I usually lift the crepe up with a thin metal butter spreader until loosened, pick up with my fingers and turn over). Cook until cooked through, about 20 seconds, transfer to a plate. Placing pieces of paper towels between each crepe as they are cooked. Make the remaining crepes in the same manner.
2 lbs. assorted fresh wild mushrooms such as crimini, chanterelle, shitake (or use 1 lb. wild & 1 lb. brown mushrooms), sliced
4 Tbsp. dried Porcini mushrooms, soaked in hot water 20 minutes, water squeezed out & chopped, soaking liquid strained through a small coffee filter & juice reserved
4 large shallots, minced
4 tsp. unbleached flour
1 1/3 cup homemade chicken stock or tinned no-salt chicken broth**
1 1/3 cup whipping cream
2/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
¼ cup finely grated Gruyere cheese
3 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary or winter savory
4 Tbsp. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the shallots & sauté approximately 1 minute or until soft. Add the sliced mushrooms, sauté until softened, approximately 5 minutes. Add the chopped porcini & sauté for 1 minute. Stir in the flour & stir for 1 minute. Whisk in the stock & strained porcini liquid; reduce until most of the liquid evaporates, but not completely. Add the cream; simmer until thickened. Remove from the heat, stir in the Parmigiano & season to taste with salt & freshly ground black pepper.
Butter a 9 x 13” gratin dish or glass baking dish. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
Place 1 crepe on work surface & put approximately ¼ cup filling in the middle of the crepe & roll up to enclose the filling. Place in the prepared baking dish & continue with filling & rolling the remaining crepes. (If you would like to use individual crepe baking/serving dishes, place 2 crepes in each buttered dish). Top with the remaining mushroom filling & sprinkle with the Gruyere cheese. Place in the oven for 15 – 20 minutes, or until bubbly. Let cool for a 5 minutes, sprinkle with the parsley and serve.
(opt.) You can substitute 2 cups cooked diced chicken for half the mushrooms or you could add blanched 1” pieces of asparagus to the mixture. Simply reduce the amounts of the chicken & mushrooms accordingly.
**If you would like to make your own stock, please go to Making Stock.