My most recent chestnut flour kitchen adventure was in making crêpes! 10/10, would 100% recommend. So. Damn. Good.
I was inspired first by my readings on traditional Tuscan chestnut flour dishes, where I came across necci, a thin crêpe like pancake made exclusively from chestnut flour and water. I tried this, but was unsatisfied with the result. The flavors weren’t as complex and balanced as I thought they could be, and I found an overpowering bitterness (over sweet nuttiness) when using chestnut flour alone.
I was next inspired by Alan Bergo (@ForagerChef), who has developed an acorn flour crêpe recipe using 50% wheat flour and 50% nut flour, as well as egg, butter, salt, sugar, and water. Like with traditional crêpes, the batter is left to sit (I let mine sit overnight) to allow for flavor and texture development.
The chestnut flour crêpe recipe I came up with is similar to Alan’s acorn flour crêpe recipe, however I use a bit more sugar to balance the bitterness of the nut flour.
Chestnut Flour Crêpe Recipe (serves 2)
- 1/2 cup bread flour
- 1/2 cup chestnut flour
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup water (carbonated, if you have it!)
- 2 Tbs melted unsalted butter (I like to brown the butter!)
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp sugar
- extra water/ milk to thin out batter if it feels too thick
- extra butter for greasing the pan
Combine ingredients and whisk well. You can even throw em in a blender, but if you do this and are also using bubbly water, add that after.
Cover and let batter sit in the fridge overnight
Grease a nonstick pan with butter over high heat
Using a ladle or measuring cup, swish about 1/4 to 1/3 cup batter into the pan, rotating the pan as you do this to get a thin, even distribution
Let the crêpe cook until the bottom detaches from the pan and is golden. I like to flip my crêpe to the other side and flash it quickly to get a sear, but some chefs recommend cooking crêpes on one side only
As you make your crêpes, set finished ones on a COVERED plate so they can soak in steam, remaining malleable, aromatic, and tender.
I dream of summer when I can make sweet crêpes with foraged berries and savory crêpes with foraged mushrooms