Thursday, June 20, 2013

Herbed Sourdough Crepes... for

Mushroom and Artichoke Crepe Cannelloni
Mushroom and Artichoke Crepe Enchiladas

SourdoughSurprises announced crepes would be the June sourdough challenge. Hooray! there are a gazillion possibilities for recipe choices; sweet or savory, seasoned or plain, filled or not, rolled or folded or stacked... see, a gazillion choices. I have typically made crepes for breakfast or brunch, on rare occasions prepared them for dessert or even an occasional appetizer. Somehow crepes never appear as a "serious" entree. It was time to remedy that.

Savory crepes tempted me this week, thin and lacey with a handful of chopped parsley and green onion tops stirred in to the usual batter. Please note, that's stirred in by hand, not in the blender, since green-colored crepes were not the effect I was after. Crepes are a traditional option for Italian cannelloni so that dish was an easy choice, though my filling was decidedly untraditional. RL favors spicier Southwest flavors, so another alternative was crepe enchiladas. Swap chunky salsa with chunky tomato sauce, add a generous splash of Green Tabasco to the mushroom and artichoke filling, change up the cheeses and presto! I had two variations using the same savory herbed sourdough crepes.

It's no secret that I love my sourdough starter for the subtle, sour tang it lends to breads, rolls, pancakes and waffles. Keeping that starter happy involves talking to it occasionally, feeding it weekly, and then dealing with a lot of excess starter. Excess starter is no problem when sourdough crepes are so easy, so tasty and so versatile.

Sourdough Crepes

base recipe from HeartlandRenaissance

makes an easy dozen 6"-8" crepes, or 8-10 of the 10" size

1 heaping cup sourdough starter
2 eggs
2 Tablespoons melted butter
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup minced fresh Italian parsley and green onion tops

pinch of dried basil
1/4 – 1/2 cup of milk (quantity will depend on consistency of your starter)
extra butter for cooking

  1. Combine all ingredients, except the extra butter for cooking, and whisk until well combined and no lumps remain. Add 1/4 cup milk and whisk to incorporate. The batter should be creamy - add more milk as needed to thin. (After your first crepe, you'll know if you need to add even more milk to get the batter to spread easily.) 
  2. Preheat a small frying pan over medium heat; cast iron or nonstick are good choices, 8" is a good size, but smaller or larger work too. Note: ridged bottoms in some nonstick skillets are definitely NOT crepe friendly, they want to hold onto the crepe when you want to flip it over. It's doable, but takes a bit lot more care. 
  3. Add a scant teaspoon of butter to the heated pan and let it melt. Pour in a scant 1/4 cup of batter, swirling and tilting the pan so it runs to the edges and coats the bottom of the whole pan. Hint: hold the pan with your favored hand, righty or lefty, and tilt and swirl while you ladle in the batter with your other hand.
  4. Cook for a minute or more till the batter sets and the bottom browns slightly, then flip over to cook the second side for 30 seconds or so (more if you like your crepes slightly crispy). I use a rubber spatula to loosen one edge and then flip with my fingers, but choose your own method.
  5. Ease the crepe out of pan and set aside on a sheet of waxed paper while you cook off the remaining batter. 
  6. Serve crepes plain or top with a sprinkle of sugar and a squirt of lemon to eat right away, or serve rolled or folded with your choice of filling. Crepes freeze really well, but defrost and bring them to room temperature before rolling or filling to prevent cracking.

Mushroom-Artichoke Cannelloni 
(filling for 6 small crepes)

1/2 cup chopped mushrooms

1/3 cup chopped artichoke hearts

1/8 teaspoon each dried basil and thyme
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
sprinkle of flour and 1/4 cup milk or broth
salt and pepper to taste
1/8 cup homemade spinach/parsley/walnut/feta pesto
1/4 cup ricotta
1/2 cup freshly grated or shredded Parmesan cheese plus more for topping
1/8 cup of chopped walnuts
1/2 cup or more of your favorite red pasta sauce
  1. Spray a small skillet with cooking spray and saute the mushrooms over medium heat until they give up their liquid and it cooks down. Stir in the artichoke hearts, basil, thyme and nutmeg, cooking until fragrant. Sprinkle with flour and stir to incorporate, add the milk and stir until it thickens. Remove from the heat and let it cool a bit; stir in the pesto, ricotta, Parmesan and walnuts. Taste and adjust seasonings. (At this point I want to eat spoonful after spoonful.)
  2. Lightly coat the bottom of a baking dish or several ramekins with a skim coat of pasta sauce. 
  3. Divide filling into equal portions. Place a line of filling down one side of a crepe and roll to enclose. Place seam side down in baking dish. Repeat, arranging filled crepes next to each other but not overlapping.
  4. Spoon remaining red sauce on top, sprinkle with additional Parmesan.
  5. Bake 15 minutes at 350 degrees F until cheese melts and filling is heated through.  
Mushroom-Artichoke Enchiladas
As above, with some or all of the following adjustments:
Add a teaspoon of Green Tabasco sauce to the filling (more or less to your taste)
Substitute your favorite chunky salsa for the red pasta sauce
Swap pine nuts for the walnuts and cilantro for the parsley
Top with pepper-jack cheese rather than Parmesan


  1. Oooh, what a great idea! I definitely wouldn't have thought to make cannelloni or enchiladas - they both look so good!

  2. Wow! Your crepes look absolutely delicious!! I am definitely going to make these~ When I think of crepes I always think sweet....not anymore:) What a great recipe~Lynn @ Turnips 2 Tangerines

  3. Enchiladas?! Wow. I had never thought of that.

  4. Oh my, those look so good! Great idea! I will be trying that in the future!

  5. OMG...I had no idea that you could do so many things with crepes!!! These look absolutely amazing :)

  6. Fantastic work!! I love that you took these to a whole new level and used them for cannelloni and enchiladas!! Brilliant idea!! And they look amazing and sound so delicious! You definitely get a gold star this month! :)

  7. Cannelloni and enchiladas were two absolute strokes of genius! What great uses for your sourdough crepes! And I am with you... I can see sourdough crepes being a weekly occurrence - or making an appearance every time I need to feed my starter and I don't have plans for the "discard"!!

  8. Cannelloni and enchiladas are both wonderful ways to take the good old crepes to a whole new level
    I love your fillings, you did a wonderful job with this challenge

  9. My mouth is watering looking your beautiful crepes! Nice job!


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