Updated: Jul 9, 2020
Pancakes which are paper-thin, soft with buttery and crusty edges, melt in your mouth, not greasy. Sounds like a wish list? Not at all - the recipe below gives you just that. Follow few super easy hints and Classic French Crepes will become one of your favourite homemade pancakes.
There are few tricks to get thin, grease-free pancakes and super soft texture:
- add sparkling water to batter for the light texture,
- add melted butter to pancake batter so that you don’t have to fry on oil or butter,
- refrigerate pancake batter for minimum 30 minutes,
- ensure pancakes are not soaked in oil or butter when frying - brush your frying or pancake pan only once - at start. Use kitchen paper towel lightly soaked in in sunflower oil (1/2 Tablespoon of sunflower oil),
- fry pancake until the surface is set and don’t flip (i.e. don’t fry on both sides) - for soft texture OR flip when semi-set and fry on both sides for crusty and buttery crêperie-style pancake edges (we love just that!),
- get smooth, good quality frying pan or pancake pan.
Last but not least - say goodbye to first pancake. It will never be perfect! :) As many pancakes as we have made the first one is always semi-standard, the rest comes out beautifully.
Easy Classic French Crepes (Basic Recipe)
Yield: 10 pancakes
Time: 5 minutes prep + 30 minutes cooling + frying time
Equipment: pancake or frying pan and pancake spatula
- 2 large eggs
- 250ml full-fat milk
- 160ml sparkling water
- 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
- 40g butter, melted
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 150g all-purpose flour
- 1/2 Tablespoon sunflower or rapeseed oil (you can also use melted clarified butter - see Hints)
- paper kitchen towel
1. Prepare pancake batter: Whisk eggs with milk, sparkling water, sugar (if using), melted butter and salt. Slowly start adding flour whisking until combined and watery, smooth pancake batter is formed. Refrigerate for minimum 30 minutes (and up to 12 hours).
2. Fry: Apply 1/2 Tablespoon sunflower or rapeseed oil on paper kitchen towel, brush your frying pan and then preheat the pan. For soft pancakes: pour batter and wait until surface is firm (some 50 seconds), don’t flip - take off the heat. For buttery-crusty edges - fry on both sides (approx. 50 seconds on 1st, then 15 seconds on 2nd).
1. Butter - don’t use regular butter to fry pancakes. If you want stronger buttery flavour use clarified butter. Regular butter goes brown at higher temperature (your pancakes will have after-taste and may catch burned colour when frying).
2. Brushing with paper kitchen towel - as there is already butter in the pancake batter there is no need for excessive oil. Don’t worry - pancakes won’t stick to the pan. Brush only once - at the start. If you are frying more than one batch - brush after each batch (every 10 pancakes or so). This will ensure your pancakes are not greasy, have buttery and crusty edges, and are paper-thin and pale.