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Monday, June 6, 2011

Cheese and Almond Creme Blintzes

Happy Monday, dear ones. I hope you're all having a wonderful day. If not, then I hope you have wine.

Did you have a good weekend? I had a fabulous weekend. Barbecue and pool party with the family, then an absolutely stirring concert at a tiny local theater last night. I did a little digging and found a photographer who was there and has photos! ::dance:: Gotta wait for them to be uploaded, though.

If your weekend was as rockin' as mine, you better spill it. I want to hear.

So after an amazing couple days, I woke up this morning and craved something light and fluffy. Pancakes would be too heavy. Toast? Nah. Too dry. Omelet? Eh, too meaty for a balmy St. Louis morning... hm. What could I make?

Oh! Blintzes! Light and airy, creamy, and full of yum. And let me share something with you, friends--I like yum. What could be tastier than thin, toasty crepes stuffed with marzipan-infuzed ricotta filling and drizzled in homemade blackberry sauce? HO boy! Nothing. So I hopped out of bed and whipped up my batter.

Crepe Batter
Makes 12 large crepes

1 cup all-purpose flour
3 eggs
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter, melted

I can tell you how to sift everything together and stir in this, and whisk in that... but to be perfectly honest, I don't want to sift and stir first thing in the morning, no ma'am. So I put everything in a blender and pulse until smooth and well blended. Then I let it sit in the fridge for an hour to let the bubbles dissipate. Bubbly batter will make the crepe less flexible and more prone to cracking.

I highly recommend using a crepe pan. You can use a skillet if you don't have a crepe pan, but skillets aren't usually as thick and heavy-bottomed as a crepe pan, and because crepes are so thin, they'll scorch easily if you don't keep a diligent eye on them. So be sure to watch like an angry mama bear if you're using a skillet.

I like to wipe my pan with an oil-dampened paper towel and get it nice and hot. When you pour in your batter, you should hear a slight sizzle and it should spread easily, but the batter shouldn't stick and cook immediately--you'll get globby, uneven crepes. Pour about 1/2 a cup of batter into the crepe pan, and swirl the batter around the pan until you have a nice, even layer. Let it cook 30-45 seconds and flip. If your pan is well seasoned, you should be able to just give a flick of the wrist and pretend like you're hosting a cooking show as you flip it right there in the pan (or is that just me?)

It should be golden brown on each side. Transfer to a rack to cool.

Now to make them blintzalicious!

In a small bowl, I mixed 1 cup of ricotta cheese with a teaspoon of cinnamon and a teaspoon of honey. I also used 1/2 a cup of sweetened almond paste, and several spoonfuls of homemade blackberry jam, warmed and liquefied.

Schmear one quarter of your cooled crepe with a thin layer of almond paste. Pile in the ricotta mixture and roll your crepe from one edge, tucking in the ends as you go. Or you can just fold your crepe into quarters and make it into a triangle shape.

You can garnish with whipped cream for an extra dollop of dairy, or sprinkle on some orange zest to bring out that bright flavor, sprigs of mint, fresh fruit, a dash of cinnamon, or whatever your heart desires.

Enjoy, and happy eating!

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