Unless you have a crepe pan, crepes require expert spatula skills. I don’t eat them enough to own a crepe pan, but I have figured out a few things along the way that make it easier to do, especially if you are making the garbanzo-fava bean flour variety and you are somewhat inexperienced!
1. Use a lightly oiled non-stick skillet. If I use anything other than non-stick, I end up with a mess. It sticks so hard to the bottom that I tear the entire thing up, and it ends up being a glob.
2. Use a very thin, assertive spatula. You want something that can bend a little bit, but also that can easily get between the crepe and the skillet. Thin and strong worked well for me.
2. Heat over medium to high heat, and wait until the top of the crepe appears “matte” instead of “glossy” before attempting to fold. If you start spatula-ing while it’s still glossy, it is more likely to tear and you’ll end up with a glob.
3. Don’t add too much crepe batter at a time to the skillet. If you use too much batter, you’ll end up with something that’s half way between a pancake and an omelette. It will be dense, and it might not fold. A crepe should be thin. ⅓ cup at a time worked well for the large skillet that I used. Try it for yourself. If it’s still too much, use less for the next crepe, and see what happens.
4. If you end up with a glob, keep working on your technique. Garbanzo-fava crepes require patience, and an eye for timing. You’ll get better with practice. I mean, if I think about the first time I ever flipped a pancake, it was a complete disaster! And now, my pancake game is on point. Anything worth doing takes practice.
I stuffed these vegan savory crepes with chard, summer squash, red onions and portobello mushrooms, but feel free to change up the vegetables in the filling. During the summer months, I love to use fresh herbs, so I incorporated fresh thyme, chives, and parsley into the crepe batter. You can switch it up with other favorites, like basil, oregano or tarragon. As a variation, add some almond ricotta, shredded vegan cheese or vegan cream cheese with the vegetables before folding the crepe up.
I can’t say enough about the vegan hollandaise sauce recipe. If you have a high speed blender (like a Vitamix), you can skip soaking the cashews. Your blender will be strong enough to pulverize those babies. In general, the sauce isn’t hard to make, and it adds so much to this dish. Do it. And do it now. If it gets too thick, whisk in some water until it’s the consistency that you like. Then, start covering everything with it!
Savory Garbanzo-Fava Crepes
with Vegan Hollandaise Sauce
Vegan Hollandaise Sauce:
½ cup raw cashews, soaked in water for 2 hours and drained (see note above)
1 cup water
1 Tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp nutritional yeast
½ tsp cornstarch
½ tsp onion powder
½ tsp dijon mustard
¼ tsp turmeric powder
¼ tsp smoked paprika
¼ tsp salt
Hot sauce, to taste – optional
1 cup garbanzo fava flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Garbanzo Fava Flour)
1 ⅓ cup water
1 garlic clove
½ tsp onion powder
2 Tbsp fresh chives
1-2 tsp fresh thyme
¼ cup flat leaf parsley
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 bunch of rainbow chard, stems mostly removed and torn into pieces
1 medium yellow squash, sliced into half moons
2 portobello mushrooms, sliced
2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
½ cup red onion, sliced
1 Tbsp olive oil
Fresh thyme, to taste
Sliced tomato, to top
1. Add everything listed under “Vegan Hollandaise Sauce” EXCEPT the hot sauce to a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth.
2. Add to a medium saucepan, and whisk over medium heat until it thickens. Stir in hot sauce, if using. Taste, and adjust seasonings (more salt? more lemon juice?). Cover with a lid, and set aside. If it’s thicker than you would like, whisk in more water until it’s the consistency that you like.
2. Add everything listed under “Garbanzo Fava Crepes” to a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth, but don’t over blend. You want your herbs to be recognizable, and you don’t want too much air to get into the batter. Set the batter aside for about 10-15 minutes.
3. While the batter is setting up, start working on the vegetable filling. Add onions, garlic and portobello mushrooms, olive oil and salt to a large skillet. Saute over medium-high heat until mushrooms sweat out most of their liquid (~5-7 minutes). Add yellow squash and fresh thyme. When yellow squash are tender (~3-4 minutes), stir in chard. Cook for 1 minute, and remove from heat.
4. Lightly grease the bottom of a large, non-stick skillet, and warm to medium heat. Pour in ⅓ cup of crepe batter, and spread evenly across the bottom of the pan. When the top of the crepe goes from looking “glossy” to looking “matte”, begin to work your spatula along the outside edges of the crepe to loosen them. Try to get as far underneath the crepe as you can without breaking it. Carefully remove the crepe from the skillet and place on a dish.
5. In the center of the crepe, add some of the vegetable filling. Fold the crepe over (like you would an omelette) or roll the crepe around the filling (like a burrito). Top with tomato slices, and lots of hollandaise sauce. Serve.