crêpes soufflées à l’orange for la Chandeleur

It all happened. And I missed it. La Chandeleur. Crêpe Day. Fête de la Lumière. Candlemas. Purification of the Blessed Virgin. Feast of the Presentation of Christ in the Temple. February second.(These are all the same thing, believe it or not.)

What started out as the Catholic feast day to celebrate this story has been largely overshadowed by a few things. In the States, it’s this.

In France, it’s crêpes. Who can blame them? No matter what they’re celebrating on La Chandeleur, they’ve still got weather on their mind. Rather than having a cute, furry guy pop out of a hole in front of a crowd of people in top hats, they use precipitation to guess what’s happening. Here are two proverbs they have for it*:

Chandeleur couverte, quarante jours de perte.
Candlemas covered in snow, forty days lost.

Rosée à la Chandeleur, hiver à sa dernière heure.
Dew on Candlemas, winter in its final hour.

So let’s celebrate the fact that there’s more winter, which means more hearty meals, more carbo-loading, more bulky sweaters & more hot cocoa to gorge ourselves on! What better recipe to share than crêpes? To put a fun spin on it, I adapted a recipe found in the circular at the grocery we frequented (comme d’habitude with the French recipes I share). I’ve noticed they require a lot of adapting, because their fluid measurements don’t make any sense. Enjoy this spin on crêpes, but feel free to use just the first half part as well & fill them with whatever you like.

Just the crêpes:

  1. Put a heaping half-cup of flour in a mixing bowl & make a canyon in the middle. In a separate bowl, mix together 1/2 cup of milk, a splash of salt & one egg. Pour into the canyon of flour & mix together well. Let rest for an hour.
  2. Heat a flat, level skillet. Melt a small amount of butter, spread to cover pan & scoop a small amount of batter into the pan. Spread thinly. I start out with too little batter in the pan, then add a bit if it doesn’t spread to a large enough circle. These should only take a minute to cook, then flip to cook the other side for 30 seconds to a minute.

Now, add the soufflées:

  1. Tent aluminum over crêpes to keep them warm. (Don’t cover too closely, or the steam will make them soggy.) Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Separate 3 eggs. To the yolks, add 1/3 cup of granulated sugar. Mix well. Add in 1/4 cup of flour. Incorporate, then add a cup of milk & a splash of Grand Marnier (or any orange liquour). Mix well.
  3. Take your egg whites & mix until stiff peaks form. Fold eggs into egg mixture.
  4. Scoop a large spoonful of the soufflée mixture into the middle of each crêpe & fold in half. Line folded crêpes on a baking sheet; put into heated oven & bake for five minutes.

This is such a fun filling for crêpes, dressing them up a bit without all sorts of overly sweet syrups or spreads. It’s a great Saturday morning breakfast & looks like it took way more effort than it really did. I’d say the recipe feeds three, but I had loads of extra filling. I’m working on cutting the filling back or at least finding a new way to use the rest. (Today, I put it in soufflée cups & baked it until firm. I’m hoping it sets so that I can eat it like an odd version of meringues.)

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About meganbetz

human geography PhD Student at Indiana University; wife, reader, writer, baker, gardener
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