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See also: Crepes Suzette Recipes
Suzette, Woman of Mystery
Unexpectedly, the alcohol caught fire thus flambéing the sauce and serendipitously creating a new taste sensation. Edward and his guests were delighted and the Prince asked Charpentier what he planned to call his new creation. Charpentier offered “Crepes Princesse” but Edward, in honor of his guest’s young daughter asked if he would name them Crepes Suzette, and hence, a classic was born. Charpentier went on to become a world famous chef and publicized the story in his memoirs.
They are often accompanied by some kind of sauce and form the basis of an appetizer or main course. Crepes Suzette are sweet crepes accompanied by an orange flavored butter sauce, and flambéed with orange liqueur.
Crepes are trickier to make than traditional pancakes. For pancakes, you basically just mix the batter and then simply plop dollops of it onto a hot griddle. Not so for crepes. Unlike pancake batter where some lumps are of no consequence, crepe batter must be smooth and more fluid, like the consistency of heavy cream. This is why some chefs use a blender. Next, the batter should be rested in the refrigerator for two hours. This allows for the flour particles to expand in the liquid and facilitates the dissipation of air bubbles. Both of these processes create a lighter, thinner, and tender batter. If the batter thickens upon resting, add a little water until the desired consistency is achieved. The final point of departure from pancakes is the cooking vessel employed. Crepe batter is not ladled onto a griddle but into a crepe pan, a shallow, round frying pan specifically designed for making crepes. If you don’t have a crepe pan you may employ a non-stick eight inch skillet.
(Makes about 16 crepes)
• 10 oz. milk
Add the liquid ingredients to a blender, mix them first, and then gradually add the flour and salt. Blend for one minute or until all the ingredients are well integrated, stopping to scrape down the sides of the blender if need be. Strain the batter through a sieve and refrigerate for two hours.
FOR THE SAUCE:
• 1 stick butter.
Melt the sugar into the butter in at least a twelve but preferably a fourteen inch nonstick skillet over medium to medium-low heat. Add the zest and the juice and simmer for a minute or two. Add the crepes, one at a time. Place them in the skillet, coat them with the sauce, and then fold them into quarters. Successively overlap one folded crepe over another, around the edge of the pan. Add the Grand Marnier and either tip the pan toward the flame or use a match to ignite the liqueur. As soon as the flames subside, serve the crepes.
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