There’s a growing community of food bloggers here in LA. We’re getting to know each other by stepping away from our computers each month for face-time, networking and good eats together. And, recipe sharing!
Last month, Erika of In Erika’s Kitchen hosted a brunch where Small Pleasures Catering blogger/caterer Giselle arrived with pretty pillows of Cheese Blintzes. I photographed ‘em. And then I drizzled them with her toppings. Then I ate ‘em. And then I asked Giselle for the recipe. Her inside scoop: Julia Child’s crepe recipe is Giselle’s fav, not uncommon for good cooks. We rely on a treasure trove of “tried and true” basics.
Blintzes start with crepes. And sometimes, making the first few can be trouble but after that, clockwork. There is a “public” side and “non-public” side to a crepe; make the prettier surface your outside. And very Julia-ish, just tuck little unhappy edges underneath, “nobody will see,” is her likely advice.
Our next potluck is tomorrow’s holiday appetizer gig (with Mad Housewife Wine and swag from Spice Hunter). Already marinating in my fridge: Green Salsa Chicken. Watch for the recipes when I share them. For now, enjoy:
Cheese Blintzes from Giselle at Small Pleasures Catering
(The crepe recipe is from Julia Child’s The Way to Cook )
- 1 cup Wondra flour
- 2/3 cup each milk and cold water
- 3 large eggs
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 6 Tbsp. clarified butter
Measure the flour into a bowl, then whisk in by dribbles the milk first, then the water to make a smooth blend. Whisk in the eggs, salt, and 3 tablespoons of the clarified butter. Let the batter rest for at least 10 minutes.
Heat the crepe pan (I reserve a couple of non-stick pans exclusively for crepes) until a couple drops of water sizzle across it, then lightly brush with clarified butter. Pour 1/4 cup of crepe batter into the center of the hot pan, and swirl and tilt the batter into all directions. The batter should cover the pan with a light coating – pour out any excess. After 30 seconds or so, the bottom of the crepe should be lightly browned. You may lift an edge with a spatula to check.
Shake the pan to loosen the crepe, then turn it over with a spatula (Julia says you may use your fingers, too)- this will be the non-public side of the crepe. Cook it another 15 seconds or so, then flip it out of pan onto a parchment lined sheet pan. I find that after the first crepe or so, I don’t need to continue brushing the pan with butter.
- 1 pound cream cheese
- 1 1/2 pound farmer’s cheese
- 3 large egg yolks
- 1 1/2 tsp. lemon zest, finely grated
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
In bowl of mixer, blend the cream cheese and the farmer’s cheese. Add the yolks 1 at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the lemon zest and sugar. Chill until firm.
Place a crepe on work surface with non-public side up. Place 2 Tbsp. cheese filling on the crepe leaving a 1 to 1-1/2″ border. Fold both sides of the crepe up to enclose the cheese, then the two ends to make a neat little envelope. Place the blintz, seam side down, on a parchment lined sheet, while you finish filling and folding the other crepes. I usually refrigerate them at this point. They may also be frozen. To cook the blintzes, lightly brush that exclusively reserved non-stick pan with a bit if clarified butter, then place the blintz in pan to lightly brown (3-4 minutes), then flip it over to brown the second side. Makes @ 25-30 blintzes. Serve with topping options: jams, sour cream, fresh fruit.