A popular Florentine dish as a lasagne substitute. Crêpes are much lighter than pasta and have a delicate flavour. They work just as well with a cream or a meat sauce filling.
±1/2-1 cup milk
2T olive oil, plus extra for frying
1 cup flour, sifted
600g (2 packets) spinach, trimmed
2T grated parmesan/pecorino cheese
1 egg, lightly beaten
Pinch freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup flour
4-5 cups milk
3T grated parmesan/pecorino cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Whisk the eggs in a bowl until well blended. Add the milk, the olive oil and salt. Gradually mix in the flour. The batter should be smooth and have the consistency of cream (add extra milk if necessary).
- Brush a ±15cm nonstick frying pan with oil and place over moderate heat. Pour in just enough batter to create a very thin sheet when the pan is tilted. Cook for ±1 minute until the edges lift easily. Turn the crêpe and cook the other side for ±30 seconds. Transfer to a flat surface (plate) to cool. Continue until the batter is finished. There should be ±12 crêpes in all. (They can also be made ahead and frozen.)
- Preheat an oven to 180°C. Cook the spinach in a little salted boiling water until tender, ±2 minutes. Drain well, pressing out any excess liquid, and finely chop.
- Mix the spinach, ricotta, cheese, egg and nutmeg in a bowl. Season to taste with salt.
- Spoon ±1T filling in a line down the centre of each crêpe and roll up. Place them seam side down, on a plate.
- In a small saucepan over moderate heat, melt the butter. Add the flour, and blend well, stirring consistently for ±3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the milk, gradually so as not to form lumps. Once all the milk is incorporated, return to the heat and continue to stir until the sauce has thickened.
- Remove from the heat and add the parmesan. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Pour enough sauce into a shallow baking dish to form a thin layer on the base. Arrange the crêpes side by side, seam side down on top of the sauce. Spoon the remaining sauce over the crêpes (at this stage, the dish can be covered with clingfilm and kept in the fridge).
- Bake until the sauce bubbles slightly and the crêpes are heated through, ±20 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and serve immediately.
Wickedfood cooking school runs cooking classes throughout the year at its purpose-built Johannesburg cooking studios. Cookery classes are run in the mornings and evenings 7 days a week (subject to a minimum of 12 people). The venue is also popular for corporate events and private functions – team building cooking classes, birthdays, kitchen teas, and dinner parties with a difference.
Our cooking lessons are hands-on, where every person gets to participate in the preparation of the dishes. They are also a lot of fun where you not only learn new skills, but get to meet people with similar interests. For corporate groups and teambuilding cooking classes these events are a novel way of creating staff interaction or entertaining clients.