crêpes de Bretagne

Forget about breakfast or dessert pancakes. This is a different beast altogether, not sweet but savory, a lot closer to crocque madame ( = toast instead of the buckwheat pancake) than to sweet pancakes. Be generous with the stuffing, that you can serve it as a snack or small meal. The pancakes by themselves are not bad, but it is the combination with the filling that makes this dish remarkable.

Buckwheat is a different plant family than wheat. Its seeds are milled into a dark gluten-free flour. Because the lack of gluten makes the batter more fragile, adding regular wheat flour may make it easier to make pancakes that won't break too easily.

Crêpes de Bretagne are larger than even the Belgian pancakes.
Use an oversize pan if you have one. A special 12" or larger griddle works even better.

a. internet recipe + pictures

All pictures in part 1 were borrowed from the internet.
The recipe was adapted from THIS PAGE.

This recipe shows a 1.5 part wheat flour to 2 parts buckwheat flour.
If you have trouble with your pancakes breaking, add more wheat flour, up to 3 parts to 4. If you want to try to be more original, use less wheat flour. It will enhance the buckwheat flavor and make the crepes darker.

INGREDIENTS

This is what you need for 2+ servings:

  • 2 cups buckwheat flour
  • 1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • water
Pic1: savory crêpe de Bretagne

Directions

internet pictures

Pic2-4: batter

 

Pic5+6: pancake batter spreader
Pic7: finished buckwheat pancake

finishing up

Pic8-11: finishing up

These savory pancakes are usually served with cheese, ham and a sunny egg. 
Cook the egg separately.


b. crêpes de Bretagne in my kitchen

2020-09-24

This was the first time in at least 30 years that I made this back in Belgium.
I was glad to see I had not lost my tough yet.

I did buy a 12" electric pancake griddle for this. The biggest stovetop pan I have is about 10" diameter and that is a bit small for these pancakes, not enough extra edge to fold them properly.

I might have cooked this pancake a bit longer, until it was completely dark brown.

INGREDIENTS

This is what you need for 4+ servings:

  • 3 cups buckwheat flour
  • 1 cup wheat flour
  • 1-2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • water

for each pancake:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 slice bacon
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup shredded Swiss or gruyere
Pic12: savory crêpe de Bretagne, in my kitchen

Directions

2020-09-24

Pic13: flour mix, egg
Pic14: whisk in water ...
Pic15: ... until very pourable

 

Pic16: 1st try
Pic17: 2nd try
Pic18: fry the egg

 

Pic19-21: the filling

 

Pic22-24: fold & serve

 


c. buckwheat waffles

2020-09-26+27

Two days in a row with such substantial breakfast was more than enough. I still had a little bit of batter left over, decided to try to make buckwheat waffles.

The first one was not a success. I added a cup of wheat flour, 1 tbsp. baking powder, 2 eggs and 2 tbsp. sugar, pushing the batter more towards the recipe for breakfast waffles, but the buckwheat was still there of course and quite noticeable in the finished product.

Then I rediscovered why I put that waffle iron in storage. I baked these later ones for close to 15 minutes each, and they still were not crisp. Double time in the toaster for breakfast the next day got me close to it.

These waffles tasted different than the buckwheat pancakes, (sweeter, more pliable) but also the breakfast waffles. I'm pretty sure I'll need a better waffle iron to bake them in a more reasonable time.

Directions

2020-09-26+27

Pic25-27: wheat & buckwheat waffles