Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Crespelle is the Italian word for crepes. Almost everyone knows what crepes are but not their Italian cousins. They can of course be made sweet or savory, but more often than not I’ve seen them as savory preparations. They are considered a form of pasta and served as such, as the primo in an Italian meal. They are also used sometimes to make Manicotti instead of pasta tubes.
I like the recipe in Mario Batali’s first cookbook “Simple Italian Food: Recipe from My Two Villages“. The batter cannot be any simpler, nothing more than flour, milk and eggs. No butter. No Oil. No seasoning besides a pinch of salt. Cooking the crespelle takes a bit of practice, but once you convince yourself that they DO NOT need to be perfect circles, they get much easier. After they are filled, folded and baked, their perfect shape does not matter.
Batali fills his with a mixture of goat cheese and sautéed radicchio. I had no radicchio and I made my own ricotta the day before. So, I filled mine with ricotta, sautéed mushrooms, onions, parsley and some bitter lettuce from the garden standing in for the bitterness of the radicchio. The filling is seasoned with balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Just like Mario instructs, I saved some of the filling and smeared it over the crespelle before baking them in a buttered baking dish until the edges got crispy.
Served it with chilli flakes, parmigiano reggiano and a glass of red wine