Howdy! Yowzers it’s been a while. Well I’m not gonna lie here, a lot has been going on here at The Kosher Gastronome HQ, where to start.
Well first of all – my wife and I were blessed with our own li’l bundle of poop!
Her name is Daniella Noa Fogel, and isn’t she amazing? How are you going to say no to such a rhetorical question like that??
So needless to say, we’ve been pretty busy; it’s not easy training a 2 week old to cook, but she’s getting the hang of it.
Also – I found out that I got into the Maryland residency for next year (the AEGD in the University of MD), which is where I was hoping to get into, so lots of good news all around, praise the lawd!!
All right, let’s get down to business. The last we left off, we were discussing chicken stock, and I had mentioned that if you use pieces of chicken to make stock (in addition to the bones) that you can make chicken crepes with the meat scraps…well guess what? This here post is about that! I know, how fortuitous right?
So these chicken crepes are on my top 10 list of favorite foods. Not even a question. Bold statement right there, but it’s true. I don’t even know if this is a widely acceptable form of crepe filler, but chicken crepes have been a Yom Tov staple in the Fogel household for as long as I can remember, and there has yet to be a Yom Tov that I didn’t go back into the kitchen, when no one was looking, and sneak a third (this was already after I had eaten seconds).
This is usually where I would describe how they taste and what their texture is like right? Well no! I won’t, because I don’t even want you to live vicariously through me, you are just going to have to make these for yourself, and find out just how amazing they really are.
The chicken filling part is really simple. Shred the flesh off of the chicken, and chop it up semi chunky.
Set that aside, and sautee onions, celery, carrots (“Mishpachat Mirepoix”) and some garlic, until softened, and then add in some chicken stock, the chopped chicken, and salt and pepper to taste, and cook for a few minutes.
And that’s it for the filling.
Now onto the crepe part.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I’ve been quoting Michael Ruhlman’s book Ratio a lot lately, and this is no different. I got the crepe “recipe” from his book. His ratio is 1 part egg, 1 part liquid (could be any liquid, but I used stock), 1/2 part flour, and some salt. All of these are by weight by the way.
I can’t remember what the exact measurements were, but I started with 2 eggs, and figured it out from there. So if lets say 1 egg weighs 2 ounces, then you’d use 2 ounces liquid, and 1 ounce flour. Simple enough, right?
A lot of people are afraid of making crepes. It’s one of those things, that just take practice.
To make a good crepe, you want a good pan, that holds it’s heat very well, and doesn’t have high sides which will make it hard to flip the crepe. You also want to use a non-stick pan, and apply the smallest amount of oil you can imagine. What I do is turn the oil bottle upside down with a paper towel on top (like you would with a bottle of rubbing alcohol), and use that oil to wipe a tiny layer on the pan.
The next thing is you want the pan hot, but not too hot, somewhere in the medium range, and you want to pour only enough batter that it just coats the bottom, and that’s it. Also as the batter is coating the bottom, you’re going to want to rotate the pan so the batter fills the areas without batter. This would be a lot easier to explain if you just came by and I showed you. I’m telling you, it’s not that hard once you get the hang of it.
To flip, I usually use my hands. Just slide the crepe to the edge of the pan, and pick it up, and flip it. It really shouldn’t be that hot.
I would take a video of myself doing this, but I have no idea how to edit videos, so I dunno about that.
Ok that was confusing, but the hard part is over.
Now just plop some of that chicken mixture on the crepe, and roll it up like you’re swaddling it (ie like a burrito), and set aside.
When you’re ready, put some oil in a pan, and pan fry the crepes on both sides to crisp it up a little; about 3-4 minutes ish per side over medium heat.
Traditionally in our household, these were always served with mushroom sauce. The way I made the sauce was I made a roux by melting 3 tablespoons margarine, and adding 3 tablespoons flour, and cooking the flour until it smelled nutty, and then added about 3 cups of stock stock, along with whatever seasoning you want (ie like salt, pepper, garlic, or whatever you think), to make a gravy.
While that was thickening up, I sauteed mushrooms, and then added the gravy to the mushrooms and let it cook together.
You don’t want it too thick, it should pour be the consistency of gravy, and then serve crepes with mushroom sauce over top of it.
Just make it, I promise you will not regret it.
Since Pesach is coming (Quick, wanna hear a joke? Why is it called Pesach?? Because you “Pay a sach”!! Get it?…I know Batsheva’s laughing, and that’s all that matters)..so since Pesach is coming, obviously you can, and should, and will make this amazing delicacy, but there’s more to this little crepe story. If you stay tuned, I hope to have time to post on a little something we call “Polochintah” (wow, I totally butchered that one), or “bletlach”…either way, for those that don’t eat “gibrokts” you’ll know what I’m talking about. For those who don’t, well you’re just going to have to wait and find out.
Until then, I’m going to teach Daniella how to make crepes.
- Shredded chicken from stock
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 celery, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Reserved chicken stock
- Salt and Pepper to taste
For the Crepes:
- 1 part eggs
- 1 part liquid – ie stock
- 1/2 part flour
- Pinch of salt
(sorry I just don’t know the exact amounts, but get yourself a scale…you can’t expect me to do all of the work!)
For the mushroom sauce:
- 1 package of mushrooms
- 3 tablespoons margarine, or any oil
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 3 cups stock
- Salt and pepper to taste
- To make the chicken filling: Sautee onion, carrot, celery, and garlic over medium heat, until soft; about 7 minutes. Add about 1/4 – 1/3 cup stock and the shredded chicken, and season with salt and pepper. You really don’t want it soupy at all.
- To make the crepes: combine eggs, stock, flour, and salt.
- Heat a crepe pan over medium-low heat, and brush a tiny amount of oil on the pan.
- Take the pan off the fire, and with the other hand, ladle just enough batter onto the pan to just coat the bottom, twirling the pan to ensure it coats it evenly.
- Let the crepe cook on one side without moving it, for 2-3 minutes, and then flip. I find the easiest way to flip is with my fingers, but you might need to tuck a spatula under the crepe to be able to gain leverage.
- To cook the mushroom sauce: Make a roux, by melting the margarine, and then cooking the flour in it, until the flour starts to smell nutty.
- Add the stock all at once, and stir vigorously, and allow it to thicken up. Season as needed.
- Sautee the mushrooms until softened
- Combine gravy and mushrooms and cook until it is the right consistency of gravy.
- To assemble: Put about 1/4 cup of the chicken mixture into the center of the crepe, and fold up like a burrito.
- To finish off crepe: Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a skillet, and cook each side of the crepe for about 3-4 minutes per side, being careful not to burn it.
- To serve, top crepes with mushroom sauce, and serve warm