Imagine. You awake from your bed and walk outside to a beautiful morning. The sun greets you, and the deep blue sea lies behind your cliff top home. Waves are crashing below, sending up perfumes from the ocean. From afar, fishing boats are bobbing across the horizon, each hoping to catch their share of fish for the day.
I just described a morning in Brittany, France (source). I’ve heard so much about this beautiful place, so I had to describe it to you. It sounds perfect, doesn’t it?
I would love to go there. However, not for the beaches. Not for the fishing. And not for the seafood.
But for the crepes.
A crepe is a delicious thin pancake made with egg, sugar, flour and milk. There are two French varieties; sweet, and savory.
Sweet crepes are made with white flour, and filled with fruit, cream, and sweet sauces. Most restaurants serve them for breakfast, or as a dessert.
The second variety, the galette, differs from the sweet crepe in just one aspect – the flour. Buck wheat is used instead of white flour, giving galettes an earthy flavor. These savory crepes are traditionally filled with foods such as ham and cheese, but the variety is endless. (Source) Some are filled with asparagus, artichokes, mushrooms, and tomatoes.
Special tools are needed to create such thin crepes – they can’t be flipped with a spatula like American Pancakes. First, Chefs pour the batter onto a billig; a round, cast iron griddle. Then, a rozell (a wooden rake) is used to evenly spread the batter around the billig (source).
Once cooked on one side, the crepe is delicately flipped using a long metal spatula. After a matter of seconds, the crepe is folded in half and filled with toppings.
I figure Brittany has the best crepes simply because they invented them. They created the label ”Crêperies Gourmandes,” to ensure high quality creperies. Creperies honored with this label must have a well-rounded knowledge of their food, and a welcoming spirit. Only the best are granted this respected seal (source).
Although I’ve never been to France, my roommate, Kate, visited Paris this summer. She and her family ate at Mon Amor, a famous creperie. Kate’s ham and cheese crepe was, as she put it, “the perfect combination of sweet, salty, and gooey.” Oh boy. Even Andrew, Kate’s brother, fell in love with the crepe. Previously, Andrew had refused to eat French food. When he came upon Mon Amor’s street food, however, he could not resist.
Watch this video of Mon Amor, to see the pros work their crepe-making magic.
This video shows many varieties of crepes, both sweet and savory.