Open buckwheat crêpes with wilted greens and ricotta
INGREDIENTS(Makes 10 pancakes)
For the crepes
- 300g buckwheat flour
- 3 eggs
- 450ml full-fat milk
- 250-300ml water
- 70g melted butter plus more for cooking
For the green topping
- 1 large red onion, finely sliced
- ½ tsp allspice
- 250g kale, spring greens or cavolo nero
- 250g spinach or mustard leaf
- 1 large handful herbs, dill, parsley & coriander mint are great – use a mix!
- 3 cloves garlic
- 75g ricotta
- 75g crème fraîche
- 100g Cheddar or Lincolnshire Poacher cheese
- Pecorino, parmesan or a hard goat’s cheese, optional
- Fresh lemon
A GUEST RECIPE BY THOMASINA MIERS
“My children know that when there are crêpes in the house, they will always get some sweet ones anointed with maple syrup, lemon & sugar etc. This makes them much more willing to try the different savoury toppings I’ve given them over the years.”
Empty the flour into a large mixing bowl and make a well in the middle. Add a few pinches of salt and break the eggs into the middle. Beat in the eggs with a wooden spoon, slowly pouring in the milk as you do, gradually incorporating the flour from the sides of the bowl. Once the milk is in, stir in the water and set aside for an hour.
To make the topping heat a wide, deep pan over a medium-high heat, add 3 tbsp of olive oil followed by the onions and allspice. Sweat gently for about 10 minutes until the onion is translucent.
Meanwhile, wash the greens and herbs in plenty of cold water, shake off the excess and shred into wide ribbons with a chopping knife. Add the garlic to the onions, cook for a few minutes, season generously and then add the greens with a few tablespoons of water. Cover and cook for 10-15 minutes over a low heat until the greens have shrunk in volume and are beautifully tender. Stir in the ricotta and crème fraîche with a tablespoon of lemon juice, check the seasoning and set aside.
When you are ready to make the pancakes, pre-heat the oven to 180C fan. Stir the melted butter into the pancake batter, setting aside another 40-50g melted butter for the pan. The batter should look like pouring double cream so add a few tablespoons more water if too thick.
Heat a wide frying-pan over a high heat and when smoking hot, turn the heat down to medium-high, brush with melted butter and pour in a ladleful of batter. Tip the pan to spread the batter out across the whole pan and once browning at the edges, loosen with a fish slice and flip or turn and cook until pale golden on both sides. Repeat, using two frying pans if you like to save time, making sure the pans stay hot and brushing with melted butter between pancakes to prevent them sticking. At this point I save half the pancakes for pudding or breakfast the next day.
Put four pancakes on parchment-lined baking sheets, spread with the greens and sprinkle with cheese. Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes until the cheese is melted and golden. Cut into triangles, scatter with herbs and serve with extra cheese to grate over and lemon wedges.
I also love to top these pancakes with sautéed mushrooms, harissa or sun-dried tomatoes, tarragon and ricotta.