...gonna kick the darkness 'till it bleeds daylight... musings of a hungarian in texas

©2003 by Annamaria Kovacs. All contents of this blog are the property of the author. Use with written permission only.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Hungarian Crepes (Palacsinta)

This is for my dear brother-in-law, who has asked me nicely last night not to ever make the amount I made last night of these so that he can maintain his waistline. I love you too, brother...:-)

For about 25-30 pcs:
20 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
4 eggs
1.5 cups milk
1 cup soda water
pinch of salt

Mix all of this in a large bowl until lumps disappear; you might need a handheld mixer to complete, but it's okay. Set it aside to rest for at least 20 minutes, 45 minutes-1 hr. is best. The batter should have the consistency of full whipping cream or a tad thinner; if not, add soda water or flour to achieve that consistency.
Meanwhile, prepare the fillings:

Cottage Cheese Filling:
About 1/2 pound of cottage cheese (I used cream-style from Wagon Creek Creamery from the Coppell Farmers Market)
2-3 tbsp. of sugar
1/2 cup of raisins, soaked in hot water for 10 minutes, drained
1 egg, separated
grated zest of 1 lemon

In a medium bowl, mix cottage cheese, sugar, drained raisins and lemon zest. In separate bowl, beat egg white until stiff peaks form. Add egg yolk to filling, then fold in egg white. Set aside until needed.

Jam filling:
Open 1 small jar of any preserve: apricot, plum, raspberry or strawberry are traditional. Stir it well so it gets soft; if it is too stiff, you can dilute with some hot water or, if there are no children present and it is weekend, some rum or cognac, or any liquor harmonizing with the preserves.

Now onto the pancakes. Find a pan that has a nonstick coating or is well-seasoned. Traditionally, the pan should look like your grandma handed it down through two generations, but if you have one that you can pretty much dedicate to this and nothing else, that will do. :-) I have an old nonstick that I retired from everything else but crepe-making, which is large enough at the bottom (8-9 inches).
Again, traditionally, you'd use lard as the greasing medium, but we need to make allowances to some people's waistlines, right? So use Pam or other sprayed grease, as long as it is oil and not some kind of weird margarine substance, because it will NOT taste right. My spray-on grease is canola oil, which is neutral-tasting--that's what you are after. Butter would burn, so in this instance it is not an adequate substance to use. Grease the pan with your grease of choice and heat it up until almost smoking. Proper heat is very important--by definition you'll screw up the first crepe, but you'll get a gauge of temperature with it, so don't worry--just have a small child, dog or significant other ready to feed the victimized crepe to...:-)
Get out two large dinner plates too. One to the back of the stove, one next to the fillings. You'll also need a soup ladle to measure the batter into the pan. I have a really hefty one, so I use about 1/3 of it for 1 crepe, and since this is an egg-heavy batter, you will get wonderfully fluffy ones too. Ladle enough batter onto the hot greased pan surface, then swirl around so that it coats the bottom and it comes up a bit to the sides. It should NOT be thick at all. Think the thickness of your tablecloth or just a tad thicker. Put the pan back to the stove and let it bubble up and crinkle around the sides.
Now take a spatula and carefully but firmly slide it under the crepe and flip it over. With this batter it should not be a problem if your pan is hot enough. It needs about 1/5 minutes on one side, 30 seconds to 1 minute on the other. Both sides should look yellow, with brown speckles on them--the first side is allowed to be golden brown all the way through.
Slide crepe to prepared plate on stove. Move on to make next one.

Grease pan after each second crepe. While next one is in pan with the first side, slide previous one to second plate next to fillings; fill with about 1 tablespoon of filling and layer crepes into a glass or ceramic baking pan. Separate the different fillings, as the cottage cheese one will need to go to the oven for 10 minutes on 300F once all of it is done.

Once all crepes are done, dot the cottage cheese ones with some sour cream and place in over on 300 degrees for 10 minutes (this is for the egg in the filling to set).

Sift confectioner's sugar on top of all before serving. Serve warm; kep any leftovers (ha!) in the fridge--makes pretty decent breakfast, too, the next day (except if you used alcohol in the filling, of course).



At 12:17 PM, Blogger Madeleine said...

And they were absolutely *killer*. Thanks Anna ;-)

At 3:24 PM, Blogger coffespaz said...

Though I am not well-versed on the origin or tradition of crepes, after having read through the recipe I can't imagine having the need for a "Culinary Call to Arms" in your country.

Those sound divine, I just may have to practice making them and surprise my hubby when he finally returns home from deployment. :-)

At 4:38 PM, Blogger Annamaria said...

You can't go wrong with those, especially at an occassion such as a return from deployment...I can suggest the rum-soaked raisins for that occassion...:-)


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