Mmm…Sunday Mornings: usually the one time of the week when I can sleep in for a couple hours, then drowsily rise to eat a leisurely full breakfast from my couch with a full mug of tea and a warm blanket draped over my lap.
Recently, however, various trips and family obligations have kept me from this decadent routine. This past weekend, I stayed at a friend’s house on Saturday night, and while I knew that the sleeping-in part would not be a problem, the breakfast was up in the air.
Most everyone who loves food and eating has some sort of routine that they hold sacred. I have my Sunday Mornings, others have “Roast Chicken Thursdays” or make their salad the same way for every lunch. Caroline, the friend with whom I was staying this weekend, has a breakfast routine of her own. She pours cereal – usually mixing two or three different brands – into a pasta bowl and douses it with about a quart of milk, leaving it to sit for a bit before sitting down to the table with a carton of fresh berries and diluted O.J. Far be it from me to cast aspersions on her breakfast – everyone has their own comforting food traditions – but I was craving my own form of Sunday Morning catharsis.
As we wandered into the kitchen that morning, she went into the pantry to grab her cereals, and I went into her closet to grab the Joy of Cooking. She shook her head at me with a smile and we went our separate ways. As she got out a bowl and a spoon, I took down her food processor from the shelf; as she grabbed berries and milk from the fridge, I withdrew eggs, lemons and apple cider.
Eventually, my friend’s husband wandered into the kitchen and I think I lured him to my side of the battlefield, because soon he was flipping crepes alongside me. When all was said and done, however, and I took my seat at the breakfast table, Caroline passed me a big mug of steaming hot tea and all was right with the world.
Crepes with Apple Cider Syrup, adapted from the Joy of Cooking
For the Crepes:
1/2 c. flour
1/2 c. milk
1/4 c. lukewarm water
2 Tbs. melted butter
2 tsp. sugar
For the syrup:
1 1/4 c. Apple Cider
1 Tbs. Light Corn Syrup
2 Tbs. Brown Sugar
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
Add all of the ingredients for the crepes into the bowl of a food processor or the pitcher of a blender. Mix until fully blended and a bit frothy at the top. If using a food processor, pour mixture into a pitcher – or leave it in the blender pitcher – and let sit for 30 minutes so that the liquids absorb the flour.
In the meantime, pour all of the ingredients for the syrup into a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan and stir until blended. Turn the burner on medium until the mixture comes to a boil, then turn down the heat to maintain a rapid simmer. Reduce until mixture reaches a syrupy consistency.
When the syrup is where you like it, warm a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Wrap a tablespoon of butter in one sheet of paper towel, and rub the bundle over the pan to grease it.
Pour some batter into the pan (1/4 cup should be plenty, but it depends on the size of your pan) and immediately tilt the pan around in a circle to spread the batter across the surface. If you have a wooden crepe-spreader-thingy, all the better.
Cook for about 1 minute or until the edges of the crepe easily separate from the pan when you pass a thin metal spatula around the perimeter of the skillet. Flip the crepe and briefly cook it on the other side. The crepe should be lightly browned.
Remove the crepe to a plate and drizzle with the apple cider syrup and (if you like the crunch) some demerara sugar. Other winning toppings: lemon juice and sugar; jam of preference; and sweetened cream cheese with cinnamon or finely zested orange peel. Then, what I like to do is fold the crepe in half and then in half again so it looks like a triangle. Top it with some berries or whipped cream and voilà – the perfect Sunday Morning!