Buckwheat Crepes (sweet or savory)
For ages now I’ve wanted a concrete, reliable, delicious vegan, gluten free, refined sugar free crepe recipe. And this is it folk! One of my favorite things about it is the fact that it is so incredibly versatile below are some of my favorite combos:
· lathered with hummus, roast veggies (beet, sweet potato, peppers, lettuce), avocado and drizzled with my favorite tahini-soy sauce
· lathered with vegan Nutella and banana and a pinch of pink salt
· the classic cinnamon sugar and lemon crepe
· roasted almond butter, maple syrup, frozen banana (!!!) and a dash of salt and toasted sunflower seeds (one of my favorite combos)
A little bit about buckwheat:
Buckwheat is a nutrient-packed grain that has many health benefits. It has been referred to as a superfood due to its’ varied and extensive array of amino acids, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Despite only becoming more popular over recent years, buckwheat is in fact an ancient grain that has roots way back in history. Buckwheat is a gluten free grain, making it a popular choice among coeliacs and health seekers. It is high in fiber and has been associated with having anti-hypertensive effects as well as lowering cholesterol and improving digestion. It can be used in its’ whole form: groats for a great breakfast porridge or in soups and stews or used as a flour in baking or cooking.
Where did my love for crepes begin?
It all began the first time I went to France. Walking through the streets around Montmartre there are countless painters, venders and little stalls selling everything from macaroons to scarves to sandwiches to bracelets and lastly, to the famous crepe. On my first trip to Paris with my parents and one of my best friends, Hunny, we stopped at a beautiful market (which I sadly cannot recall the name of). The market was buzzing and alive with people and energy - the venders humming with their hopeful eyes and excited demeanors, and simultaneously, the customers busy with curious minds and light chatter. We walked past a crepe stall and my eyes bulged out of my mind where they were previously held comfortably in place. A man, big and warm, with an enchanting smile and singing a song as he used a little wooden stick-like thing to gentle coax the crepe batter to dance around the heated surface of the stove-top. He then knew exactly when to pry the crepe away from the heated surface and flip it, revealing a perfectly golden crepe on the other side. He then transferred the crepe to a piece of paper and continued to lather the crepe with Nutella – and when I say lather, I mean lather. There was no restraint there. Rightfully so. If you’re having a Nutella crepe, you’re having a Nutella crepe – no beating around the bush, ammi right? We ordered one and when I sunk my teeth into that crepe, it was like heaven in my mouth. A total food-gasm. The warm, soft, all-enveloping cozy-ness of the crepe, filled with the rich, sweet, melted Nutella was just transcendent. It was honestly one of the most magical experiences I have ever had. Since then, I have wanted to create a vegan version of this crepe and finally I have one that I am satisfied with!
So, without further a due …
Ingredients for the Crepe Base
· 2 cups buckwheat flour
· 3 1/3 cup filtered water
· 1.5 teaspoons salt
· 1 egg replacer (I used a store bought egg replacer that contained: potato starch, tapioca starch and raising agent. I used 2 teaspoons of that with 2 tablespoons of water and then added that)
For the Savory Crepes:
· ½ teaspoon whole cumin
· ½ teaspoon garlic granules
· ¼-1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
· black pepper
For the Sweet Crepes:
· 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
· ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
· 1-2 tablespoons maple syrup/brown rice syrup/honey
1. Place the buckwheat flour into a bowl. Add the water into the bowl along with the egg replacer and salt. Mix well until the mixture is smooth and bump-less.
2. Now add in the other ingredients according to whether you’d like your crepes to be sweet or savory.
3. I used a non-stick pan, in which case you can use minimal oil or even no oil when cooking the crepes. Alternatively, you would have to oil the pan well and continue. The first time I made them I made them BIG, using a big pan too. I used a ½ cup measure of batter for each one, spreading it out thinly on the pan. The second time I made them I made them smaller using a 1/3 cup measure. It all depends on how hungry you are, really.
4. Start by bringing the pan to heat on a low-medium heat. Then once it is hot, if you are greasing the pan use a dash of coconut oil. Then ladle the batter into the pan and spread it out by moving the pan in circles until it evenly coats the pan. Cook until the edges turn golden brown and the crepe releases from the bottom of the pan and is a golden brown hue on the other side. Cook through on both sides and then stack on a plate and continue until the batter is finished. For this amount of batter, I made about 4 BIG ones and 7 slightly smaller ones.
5. For the savory ones fill with roasted veggies, avocado, hummus, and whip up a quick tahini sauce by using equal parts tahini and soy sauce and then using a bit of water to thin it out further, mix well and drizzle over the crepes once filled with your veggies. If making sweet ones, prepare your sweet things – vegan Nutella, nut butters, fruits, melted chocolate and the like.
6. Serve and ENJOY!
Bask in the beauty of nourishing yourself and those around you with healthy, delicious plant based foods. It is one of the most incredibly feelings: to nourish yourself and thoroughly enjoy a meal without having to harm any other sentient beings in the process. Namaste.