And while I constructed this chocolate and banana crêpe without an engineering degree, I did take a French bistro cooking class. I bought the class on a whim one morning. Bleary-eyed, I opened my email inbox, and in between all those Viagra spams was a Groupon that said 50% Off Cooking Class. A pushover for a good deal (and a good meal), I perused the school's offerings and thought, A little coq au vin and crêpe training for the price of a dinner out. Oooh la la. Not fully caffeinated yet, I hastily hit the Buy Now button. Was that wrong? A girl's gotta go by her Groupon intuition, and mine said, How could building crêpes and chocolate sauce from scratch be wrong?
So in the class, for dessert, crêpe construction began. After mixing the batter and frying the crêpes, then heating the chocolate and adding the cream, we laid out the mise en place. From the crêpes, chocolate sauce, sliced bananas, shredded coconut and Grand Marnier whipped cream, we each assembled our own edible edifice. Maybe I should have referred to my Nutella crêpe photo for proper crêpe assemblage since the pillowy whipped cream seemed to take this one over. Oh well. C'est la vie. There's always a next time. In the meantime, if anyone has a bridge to sell me, I'm biting.
Chocolate and Banana Crêpes Recipe (from Chefs, Inc.)
Makes approximately 16 crepes
2 cups flour
1 ½ cups whole milk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus extra for frying
½ vanilla bean or few drops vanilla extract (optional)
8 ounces semi-sweet or dark baking chocolate (we used bittersweet Ghirardelli chips)
1 cup heavy cream or crème fraiche
1/3 cup shredded coconut
Ice cream or whipped cream (optional)
Sift flour and salt into a bowl. Make a well and pour in eggs. Mix well. Slowly pour in milk while continuing to stir. Keep stirring the batter until small bubbles form on the surface. Stir in the butter and mix well. Melt a dot of butter in a non-stick crepe pan and wipe the pan evenly. Keep the paper towel at hand while preparing crepes in case you want to give it another wipe. Pour in about 3 tablespoons of batter and quickly move pan around so that batter spreads evenly, covering the whole surface with a thin layer. Let cook for about 1 minute. Flip with a spatula and cook other side for about 30 seconds. Continue until all the batter is used. Stack between sheets of wax paper and set aside.
Break chocolate into small pieces. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Add the cream, stir well and remove from heat. Place the crepes on individual plates. Line one half of each crepe with chocolate and then banana slices. Fold the empty half over. Pour more chocolate on top and sprinkle with coconut and a scoop of ice cream or whipped cream. Serve immediately.
Cook’s Note: The batter does not need to stand before using it. However, if you do let it stand, you will probably need to add 1 tablespoon of water before using it. General rule of thumb: if it seems thicker than cream, add a little more water, and/or a little more milk.