On my radio show last week I talked about all the fun ways to use alcohol. Aside from the ways we all know and love. That got me thinking about dessert. There are many things out there with food that I still do not understand. Desserts are one of the biggest mysteries to me. This is very confusing because I wanted to be a pastry chef as a child. Maybe it is the art of baking that scares me, or maybe having to follow exact recipes is too unusual. Whatever it is, I still steer clear. Two things I will touch are delicious sweet sauces, and blended cheeses. I get to use skillets, pots, cheese, flames, and really everything else I am use to. No baking or exact directions. Tada!
Ingredients for Crepes:
Buttermilk Pancake Mix
Water or Milk (dependent on brand of pancake mix)
For Mascarpone Filling:
½ Cup Mascarpone Cheese
½ Lemon Zest
½ tsp. Vanilla extract
1 ½ Tbsp. Granulated Sugar
1 tsp. Cinnamon
½ Squeezed Lemon Juice
For Raspberry Sauce:
1 Pint Fresh Raspberries
½ Cup Granulated Sugar
1 Tbsp. Cointreau Liquor
¼ Cup Water
This is one of the interesting easy recipes I found when I first started writing my favorites down. It is actually a compilation of recipes from my leather bound book. I found the Mascarpone cheese filling while trying out for a Chef position right out of college. I ended up just thinking of what I wanted it to taste like and came up with this by accident. One day I put it in crepes and realized how delicious it really could be. After a few mishaps with syrup on my crepes, I tried this raspberry sauce and it worked perfectly.
First mix up your Mascarpone filling. It should refrigerate while you are making your crepes that way it does dissolve inside of them. I would use a spoon because it is easier to fold the thick cream cheese with all of the ingredients. Fold your cheese with the lemon zest, sugar, and cinnamon. Then add your vanilla and lemon juice. Be sure to mix it thoroughly and mix out any clumps of cream cheese. Set aside in refrigerator to thicken up.
Since the raspberry sauce is going to require the most attention start that next. I am always a fan of dinner that tastes like dessert, especially a breakfast for dinner that tastes like dessert. Toss all of your sauce ingredients in a 2 quart pot over low heat, except the Cointreau. Once your sauce is started then you can mix up your pancake mix. The directions on the pancake mix you choose will have how much milk or water to add to make pancakes. Just take whatever that amount is and divide it in half and add it to the mix. The mixture should be thinner than paint like texture. When mixing pancakes normally, you should beat out all the lumps to promote fluffiness. With crepes, you want them all beat out. Crepes are traditionally better doing from scratch, but with pancake mix it is much simpler and still delicious.
Before you start cooking your crepes, check on the raspberry sauce. The first time you burn it I am sure will be the last. They stay on pans forever, and the smell is unforgivable. Use a spatula or wooden spoon to smash the raspberries and mix the sauce. While the sauce is still cooking, heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat with butter and pour ½ cup of the crepe mixture on the greased pan. Once the crepe appears half way done, flip and keep on for the same amount of time. About 2 minutes per side.
Keep an eye on your raspberry sauce while making your crepes, and once the raspberries are completely dissolved add your Cointreau. Do not let the sauce cook to the point where it is thick like a paste. You want it thin enough like a syrup, but not watery. Once everything is cooked, lay out your crepes and spread a generous about of Mascarpone filling in the center and fold in the center, flip over and cover with the raspberry sauce.
This just shows that something so simple, can look elegant and taste absolutely delicious with very little effort. Enjoy my little slice of heaven on your plate. Maybe even share it with someone you are trying to impress.