5-8: Royal Crêpes

More queue-cleaning–add 5-8: Royal Crêpes to the pile of other crêpe recipes that I’ve done over the course of this project. When I first started making crêpes for this project about 4 years ago now, I had never made crêpes before. Now I feel like I’ve got a pretty good handle on the concept, so let’s kick it up a notch with a “royal” version. 👑

5-8 Royal Crepes
Oh no–my mortal enemy: Hollandaise sauce. I’ve struggled with it in the past–will this be my redemption? Jump behind the cut and find out!

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Shrimp, dill, Hollandaise, and crêpes make a VERY 1980s meal. I feel like this is a breakfast I would have had at a fancy tennis club as a kid back in the day…which could have been a very distinct possibility. I had a relatively unusual childhood, but that’s a story for a different venue and time.

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Ingredients. No LF half-and-half on hand (yes, they do make it), so we’ll have to settle for plain milk. I did however, buy fresh shrimp from the seafood counter for this (no defrosting frozen shrimp for something this “royal”). They don’t specify what kind of shredded cheese to use, so I stuck with the Cheddar-Jack monster bag from Costco that I had in my fridge already.

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Making the crêpe batter. They tell you to add eggs one at a time, but I find it’s easier to beat all of them into one measuring cup and then slowly add in the beaten egg. You get the same idea of adding it in slowly, but with more efficient results.

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Rigged up my electric griddle in preparation for crêpe-making. I’ve made them in pans before (they even make special crêpe pans for such things), but I feel like a griddle is going to give me the most room to work–it’s the closest I’m going to get in my apartment to a restaurant-style flat top.

I’d never used electric griddles before my flirtation with cooking professionally, but now that I’ve used similar ones as well as real flat tops, I’m all about it. Burgers, pancakes, hash browns, and yes, even crêpes–this thing is awesome, and relatively cheap. Only problems are finding a convenient place to store it and a safe place to use it. I usually put it on top of my electric stove (blech–I hate electric stoves)–that way I already have the hood overhead to help with odors & smoke and a relatively safe “splatter” zone around it.

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The first crêpe is always garbage–there’s even a saying (“first crêpe is for the dog”) that references the concept. Takes a minute to get the hang of the viscosity of the batter and the technique to keep it round and even.

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Getting better–this wouldn’t exactly be my entry on Top Chef, but for something that’s going to be rolled up, smothered in cheese, and baked–it’ll work.

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Got the hang of it as I went on. It’s a good idea to know what size pan you’re going to be going into before you make your crêpes–otherwise they may not fit. I’m going to use a 1/3 size 2″ depth hotel pan as my “ovenproof” dish–cheap, easy, and takes whatever abuse you’re willing to throw at it.

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It’s like a Rorschach test–what shape do you see?

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Fresh shrimp from the supermarket seafood counter. Still have to take the tails off, but that’s no biggie.

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Ok, Hollandaise sauce. It’s GOING to work this time. Broke down the griddle set-up after making the crêpes and set up a Hollandaise station.

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Ok…so far, so good. Double boiler is going, time to mix the butter into the eggs.

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YOU GUYS. It worked! It’s probably not as hard as I make it out to be, but Hollandaise is like my white whale. Now that title belongs solely to poaching eggs.

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Following the directions to mix the dill and de-tailed shrimp with the Hollandaise sauce.

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Filled my misshapen crêpes with the Hollandaise/shrimp/dill mixture. Like I said above, when you roll them and cover them with melted cheese, you won’t even be able to tell that the ends were a little less than perfectly round.

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See? Can’t even tell. Recipe calls for 12-15 crêpes, but I was only able to fit 8 in my pan. That’s okay, there’s only two of us eating it anyway.

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Ample cheese spreading–edge to edge for full coverage.

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After a trip through the toaster oven broiler. I like to use the toaster oven because it has a convection setting (which my big regular oven doesn’t) and when you broil, the pan gets extra close to the heating element, similar to a “salamander” in a professional kitchen. Hotter, drier, closer heat gives you the golden brown crunchy cheesy top.

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Final plate, after I wrestled one out of the pan. I thought this looked a little janky at first, but when you compare it to the Simply Delicious picture, it’s pretty close. Taste-wise, it was a little slice of the 1980s, which I suppose is back in vogue these days.

Grade: A-

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