Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Seafood filling reminder of Garden Creperie

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Kim Bobko was hoping to find the recipe for the seafood crepes made by the Garden Creperie, a popular downtown restaurant back in the 1970s and '80s. Kristina Goertzen also misses that eatery, and has developed a recipe for seafood crepes that people say is very reminiscent of the Creperie's version.

This week, Krista Breckman is hoping someone has a recipe for cookies her Icelandic Amma used to make, especially at Christmas, called Troists, which are made with a unsweetened sour cream yeast dough that is sprinkled with sugar and then rolled, folded, twisted and baked. Sherry Moran would love the recipe for the chilli sauce or the fabulous coleslaw served at Nick's Inn in Headingley. If you can help with a recipe request, have your own request, or a favourite recipe you'd like to share, send an email to recipeswap@freepress.mb.ca, fax it to 697-7412, or write to Recipe Swap, c/o Alison Gillmor, Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6. Please include your first and last name, address and telephone number.

Savoury crepes

4 eggs

125 ml (1/2 cup) whole milk

125 ml (1/2 cup) chicken stock

15 ml (1 tbsp) margarine or butter, melted

2 ml (1/2 tsp) salt

250 ml (1 cup) all-purpose flour

In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, combine eggs, milk, chicken stock, butter and salt. Gradually add flour, beating until batter is smooth. Heat a 15 cm (6 in) pan or crepe pan over medium heat and using a cup or ladle, drop about 60 ml (1/4 cup) batter into the pan, swirling it so that it coats the pan with a thin layer of batter. Cook about 1 minute or so -- the crepe will let go of the pan around the edges when it is ready to turn -- flip and cook the second side for about 20 seconds or so. Don't overcook: the crepe should be golden in spots but not browned or crisp. Place on a plate between layers of wax paper until needed. Makes 12-14 15 cm (6 in) crepes.

Tester's notes: These were lovely and tender and would be good for any savoury crepe dish. I hadn't made crepes since a junior high French class project and somehow had the idea they were fiddly and difficult. They are time-consuming, since you need to cook one at a time, but quite easy and satisfying once you get the hang of it. (And don't worry if the first crepe doesn't turn out. They're like pancakes that way.) Use a non-stick pan or a well-seasoned skillet. I prepped my pan with a bit of melted butter, wiped off the excess, and then started with the first crepe. I didn't use or need any fat after that.

Seafood filling

75 ml (5 tbsp) butter, divided

45 ml (3 tbsp) all-purpose flour

2 ml (1/2 tsp) salt

0.5 ml (1/8 tsp) cayenne

0.5 ml (1/8 tsp) nutmeg

375 ml (1 1/2 cups) half-and-half cream

15 ml (1 tbsp) dry sherry (optional)

250 ml (1 cup) frozen cooked shrimp, thawed

125 ml (1/2 cup) frozen cooked flaked crabmeat or lobster, thawed

125 ml (1/2 cup) frozen cooked small scallops, thawed

2 hard-cooked eggs, shelled and chopped

12-14 15 cm (6 in) crepes

15-30 ml (1-2 tbsp) grated Parmesan cheese

paprika, for garnish

Preheat oven to 175C (350F). Melt 45 ml (3 tbsp) butter in a heavy saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir in flour, salt, cayenne and nutmeg, cooking and stirring until bubbly and then continuing to cook a few minutes more, without browning. Add cream and stir and cook until thickened and smooth. Stir in sherry (if using), seafood with some liquid (see tester's notes) and hard-cooked eggs, and stir gently until blended. Fill each crepe with about 45 ml (3 tbsp) of the seafood mixture. Roll up and place, seam side down, in a shallow baking dish. Spoon any remaining seafood mix along centre of crepes. Melt remaining 30 ml (2 tbsp) butter and drizzle over crepes. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Bake for about 15 minutes until heated through and bubbly. Place on plates, sprinkle lightly with paprika and serve.

Tester's notes: With their delicate, creamy taste, I'm sure these crepes will have many people recalling date nights at the Garden Creperie.

Kristina uses frozen cooked seafood and thaws it in the fridge. She sometimes squeezes out some of the seafood's liquid. The trick is to use enough liquid to give some flavour but not so much that the sauce becomes watery. I think the saltiness of the seafood might also vary, so you might want to hold off salting the cream sauce until the end.

I used more sherry because -- well, because I like sherry and it's a good complement to the cream. When it came to baking, I found that 12 crepes fit perfectly into two 28x18 cm (11x7 in) glass baking pans.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 16, 2012 D7

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