There’s the age-old debate between the classic British pancake and the French types of crepes. Are they the same? And which came first?
Well, luckily, we’re here and the debate can finally be settled. All because we’re actually here to bring your tastebuds the different varieties of the 26 types of crepes out there. The types of pancakes will be a whole other blog we’ll get to at a later date.
It turns out that from the size and the shape to the ingredient quantities and the way both desserts are cooked: they’re very different.
So, with that, the team here at The Hobby Kraze wanted to bring you an armada of everything you’d need to know about crepes of the world. Whether it’s knowing where to find the traditional crepe filings to discovering your very own crazy crepe recipe to make at home with friends and family.
Have a look at what we’ll be tasting in today’s article about the types of crepes:
- The History of Crepes of the World
- The French Crepe VS the British Pancake VS the Galettes: What’s the Difference?
- The 26 Different Types of Crepes You Can Experience on Your Tastebuds
- How to make Your Very Own Crazy Crepe Recipe from Scratch
Before we get going, there’s another debate we should probably clarify; everyone seems to be under the impression that crepes are an unhealthy treat and indulgence to have for a dessert or special occasion. And, while there’s nothing wrong with having the various types of crepes as part of a treat or part of a family tradition, they don’t have to be unhealthy. In fact, the answer to the question “are crepes healthy?” really depends on how you make them and what you put into them.
For example, a handful of hearty-cooked chicken pieces and a sprinkle of spinach will always be a savoury and healthy snack in a crepe as opposed to a nice big spread of strawberries cream.
The History of Crepes of the World
The crepes of the world we know today can all be attributed to the crepes made in 13th Century France. Brittany, to be more exact.
As the legend goes (yes, traditional crepe fillings and the story with it are that dramatic) an old housewife accidentally dropped some porridge mix onto her hot stovetop. But, because the 13th century was never a time to be wasteful with food, she had to eat it. From there, she introduced it to her family, her neighbours, her friends and the whole town before everyone was enamoured with this new crepe food.
In terms of the history about the word “crepe”, we actually should be writing it with that French hat over the “e”, so it looks a little more like “crêpe”. This derives from the Latin word “cripsa” which means crisp creases as the crepe has crisp edges that rise when fully cooked on one side.
However, back to the French history, the crepe became so popular across France. In fact, there’s even an annual tradition held on February 2nd called La Chandeleur (Candlemas) which was originally a day to celebrate the Virgin Mary’s Blessing. Yet, the types of crepes across France were such a pinnacle point of the day that it has since become known as Le Jour Des Crêpes (the day of the crepe).
The French Crepe VS the British Pancake VS the Galette: What’s the Difference?
Ok, so this takes us back to what we were saying at the beginning: the British pancake and the French crepe are not the same. While they may have some relative history, their methods and ingredients vary to the point of becoming their very own food.
Although, we are going to complicate things a little more by adding in another food to the mix: the galette. They’re also often confused with the common French types of crepes.
So, we thought we’d bullet-point the differences:
- The crepe is French
- The pancake is British
- The galette is also French
- The crepe is made using plain flour
- The pancake is made using plain flour
- The galette is made using buckwheat flour
- The crepe is naturally sweet in taste
- The pancake is naturally savoury in taste
- The galette is naturally savoury in taste
- The crepe is folded into quarters with a filling inside
- The pancake is rolled up with a filling inside
- The galette has a filling on top with four edges folded into the middle
- The crepe is thin and crispy
- The pancake is thick and juicy
- The galette is thin and crispy
In reality, a good and hearty French crepe should be thin, elastic, easy to fold, large and a little chewy. It should also have a faint sweet vanilla taste that compliments both sweet desserts and savoury meals.
The 26 Different Types of Crepes You Can Experience on Your Tastebuds
Of course, now we’ve answered all those questions that may or may not have been eating away at your mind and belly, it’s time for you to begin eating your way through the types of crepes.
And we’ve pulled out 26 different crepes of the world to help you in your journey to finding the perfect crepe.
It may not be a crazy crepe recipe and it may not be the answer you want to hear when you ask: “are crepes healthy?” but it’ll sure taste good. So, let’s get started:
Bacon Breakfast Crepes
First on the list is the unsuspecting savoury bacon breakfast crepe. They may not be traditional crepe fillings, but they’re popping up in brunch palaces across Europe. Think an English breakfast wrapped up into a French crepe like an American burrito. It’s almost like a global culinary experience in one bite. The best thing about these types of crepes is that they are so versatile; a bacon breakfast varies from country to country!
Baileys Cream Crepes
Ok, so we did mention that there are misconceptions about what crepes and pancakes are for, eventually coming to the realisation that they can be eaten in any way at any time with your traditional crepe fillings. However, these aren’t your traditional crepe filings, and we’d suggest waiting until after dinner for this late-night indulgence. Whipping up some Baileys-infused cream and plastering it into a freshly made crepe needs to be part of the bucket list.
Yes, while this does sound a little boring, there’s reason for it. We’re not talking about slicing up your regular banana and neatly placing them on top of a rolled crepe. No. Instead, we’re talking about a new and improved crazy crepe recipe that involves mashed bananas in the mixing stage. While the texture and thickness are a little off from the regular types of crepes, it’s certainly a taste experience to be had cold on a work Monday morning.
Moving away from the crazy crepe recipe and thinking about how banana can be used within our 26 types of crepes in the garnishing stage, we’ve pulled a recipe from a Parisienne street vendor trying to pack an extra punch into the crepe tastebuds. While the team here at The Hobby Kraze haven’t quite mastered the replication of these crepes in the home kitchen yet, we can say that it involves home-made toffee drizzle and some browned banana slices.
Biscoff Crumble Crepes
If we’ve ever given the impression you might get a positive answer out of answering the question “are crepes heathy?” from our list, we’re sorry. There are a couple down the line, but we have some cravings to sort out, first. This is one of them: the lazy spreader of the famous Biscoff spread with some crumbled Lotus Biscoff biscuits on top. However, beware, these types of crepes can be extremely filling and painfully addictive at the same time.
Strangely enough, this is one of the newer crepe taste experiences creeping up in the community for crepes of the world. Cheesecake has been around for a long time and so have crepes but spreading cheesecake filling into a crepe and folding into quarters is a relatively new combination. While you’ll mainly find these in America, make sure the crepe house you’re going to puts in the extra effort with a buttery biscuit base for the crepe to sit on. You’ll not regret it.
Cherry Tomato and Pesto Crepes
And we’re back to the savoury types of crepes as a part of a crazy crepe recipe. So, tomato and pesto, we all know, go well together in many ways. From a salad to a pasta dish. But if you’re wanting this wholesome and earthy combination on the move, there’s only one solution. Wrap it into a crepe or two just like they do for fajitas and take your lunchtime crepe on a walk to the park at work.
Chicken, Ricotta and Spinach Crepes
The chicken, ricotta and spinach traditional crepe fillings are part of a savoury meal often seen in the UK and in France. They make for one of the healthiest (if not the healthiest) types of crepes and are absolutely delicious. However, it does require you to whip-up some classic peppered chicken, first. Then you need to spread some melted ricotta onto the top of the crepe, place the chicken and sprinkle frozen (yes, crispy and frozen) spinach on top!
You simply cannot go wrong with a chocolate crepe. Whether it’s incorporating hot chocolate power into the mixture before cooking, squeezing some chocolate sauce onto a rolled crepe or even spreading melted chunks of your favourite bar. The chocolate types of crepes are a very versatile eat. These crepes of the world, as you might imagine, vary for where you decide to pick up your cutlery. But no matter what, they’ll be a calorific-ly delicious dessert!
Cinnamon and Mascarpone Crepes
You might not immediately think that these two tastes will compliment each other, especially when you throw a crazy crepe recipe into the mix. But, trust the team, when you have a bite, you’ll wonder why there isn’t a mascarpone sauce drizzled over cinnamon buns at your local bakery. These are best had in America (on the East coast) where you’ll find crepe batter mixed with some cinnamon spice before cooking and then lathered in cream before folding.
Citrus Crunch Crepes
When we say citrus crunch, it’s probably not what you’re immediately thinking. These types of crepe are a one-off. In fact, we’ve never seen these as part of any crepes of the world cuisine: they’re more of an at-home experimenting trend. What you first need to do is candy the rind of your favourite citrus fruit like lemon, lime or orange. Then, when you’ve got your plain crepe served up, drizzle some citrus juice and sprinkle your rind for a citrus crunch.
Crepe Cake Crepes
Ok, this is technically part of the fantastical types of cakes you’ll find around the world. In fact, it’s a very big trend in Asia right now. However, as it involves a crepe, we simply couldn’t miss it off the list. It involves your favourite whipped cream, icing or dessert mouse and a lot of crepes all layered up into the form of a cake. So, it’s quite self-explanatory. But, interestingly, food colouring is often used within the crepe batter to make rainbow crepe cakes.
Ham, Cheese and Mayonnaise Crepes
Just like how the combination of ham, cheese and mayonnaise makes bread better and can make croissants better, you’ll be surprised at what they can do for the crepe. The best thing about these types of crepes is that they make the perfect home-made meal-prep for lunchtimes at work because they keep well in the fridge and don’t fall apart too easily. Plus, there’s no reheating or a need for cutlery, so there’s fewer dishes down the line, too.
Honey Whipped Cream Crepes
They’re so simple, yet they’re so unbelievably effective at being able to satisfy both the sweet cravings and the slightly savoury cravings. When you’re making your honey whipped cream types of crepes, you’ll want to add a little extra dash of salt to the ingredients list. Plus, use unsweetened cream and natural honey for a healthy touch to the process. The salt (believe it or not) actually brings out the natural honey tastes while being highly-satiating after just one!
Nutty Bonanza Crepes
It might go without saying, but steer clear of these types of crepes if you have any sort of tree or peanut allergy. We like to roast the nuts (in a little oil and salt) before using a pestle and mortar to make a nut crumble perfect for sprinkling. If you’re stuck for choices on the different nuts to sprinkle in your crepes of the world, have a taste of inspiration from our other post: “A Foodie Guide to the Types of Nuts”.
Peaches and Cream Crepes
For a refreshing take on the types of crepes, you can always grab a fresh peach and some whipped cream. Lazy squirty cream will do but you have to get a fresh peach to be getting a hint of the traditional crepe fillings you’d find in a French restaurant. If you can get your hands on a true ripened yellow peach, they’re best, but it’s not always an option in the weekly shop. When cutting, remove the fuzzy flesh and cut thin for a good ratio between crepe and peach.
Peanut Butter and Jelly Crepes
Another one to thank the American foodie population for is the peanut butter and jelly crepes. Or, as we would know them: peanut butter and jam crepes. Giving a firm “no” to the question “are crepes healthy?”, these indulgent snack-time favourites make use of a crepe calzone with equal spreads of peanut butter and a jam of your choice. From regular flavours like strawberry to some more out-there tastes like grape jam, they’re great snacks for the kids!
Ok, earlier we said that the chicken, ricotta and spinach crepe was one of the best and most nutritional crepes to go for. Especially when trying to answer the question “are crepes healthy?” in the most positive way. However, we may have told a white lie to get into your belly. While the added ingredients of chicken, ricotta and spinach are a healthy combination, leaving all fillings on the side for a single and delicious plain crepe is the least calorific option!
Roast Turkey Dinner Crepes
If you’ve ever had a Yorkshire pudding or two (which you certainly should have on our little island of the UK), then you’ll be no stranger to the fact that the Yorkshire pudding is the same batter mixture as the British pancake. And, with the French crepe being so close to the British pancake, it makes sense that a turkey roast dinner crepe is a good partnership. Luckily, some pubs in the North West of the UK have answered this for us. Yes. It’s very good.
Steak, Mushroom and Red Wine Sauce Crepes
This might be your favourite speciality meal now, but you’ve not yet had it within a crepe. Back in the first half of the 10s, these types of crepes had their time in the spotlight. More of a common sight right here in the UK, they need to be making a comeback. However, unlike other crepes crepes of the world, these are best served with the crepe flat on the dish with the meal served as it is in a restaurant: rare, jus on the side and delicious.
Stewed Apple Crepes
We’re heading right back to the sweet-of-the-sweet types of crepes now with stewed apple crepes. If you’re making an apple crumble or an apple pie and you’ve got a little too much filling left over, leave it in an oven-proof dish covered in the oven on low. This should keep the apple filling lovely and warm. Then, when you’re ready, you can spoon out the stewed apple and lather across your crepe for your very own French traditional crepe fillings.
Just like the banana crepes, the strawberry might sound a little plain and obvious at first. But there are so many variations for eating yourself to joy with strawberry crepes. This is because you can make jam, slice and dice or have them with a good spread of sweetened whipped cream. Heck, even drizzle some natural honey on top. P.S. you can also try dipping a strawberry in the batter and heating with a naked flame for a little unique bit of yum-ness.
Vanilla S’mores Crepes
Our final ode to our American cousins across the pond is this campfire-addition to the 26 types of crepes. This is definitely one of the sweeter crepes of the world and takes away from any traditional crepe fillings. The idea is to make sure you’ve got a nice and warm plain vanilla crepe on the side. Then, roast some marshmallows on a naked flame (or get yourself a good-sized tub of fluff marshmallow spread) which can be lathered across your crepe for a sticky bite.
Taking quite the side-step, we’re going all the way back to the batter and changing it up. Traditional crepe fillings have traditional crepe recipes. But a crepe doesn’t have to follow the same recipe it always has just to be the same delicious entrée, main or dessert. By substituting milk for oat milk, butter for plant-based butter and eggs for coconut oil, you’ve got a good crepe batter. As a crazy crepe recipe, they can be paired with any traditional crepe filling.
Wild Berry Compote Crepes
Our final contribution and find for the types of crepes of the world, we have the Swiss-origin wild berry compote. Despite the fancy name, it’s just gathering your favourite berries together in a pan, adding a splash of water and a good handful of sugar (which varies with the number of berries you throw in) and heating. Just like the stewed apple crepe. Then, the compote is used alongside other tasty treats like meringue to make the best crazy crepe recipe out there.
How to make Your Very Own Crazy Crepe Recipe from Scratch
You didn’t think we’d tell you about all of those goodies and crepes of the world and just leave you hanging, did you?
We’ll we’re not like that, in fact, we wanted to give you your very own crazy crepe recipe to try out at home. And it’s pretty much fool-proof, too. So, you don’t have to worry about being some kind of Michelin chef or anything, either. Just someone wanting to make a quick crepe will do!
Here’s a list of the ingredients you’ll need to get started:
- 140g Plain Flour
- 200ml Milk
- 100ml Water
- 2 Medium Eggs
- Pinch of Salt
- Tsp Vanilla Extract
- 25g Unsalted Butter
- Your Additional Flavourings of Choice!
Yep, it really is that simple, with ingredients you probably already have laying around the kitchen, too.
The first step is to hand whisk everything together apart from the flour. Whisk gently so you don’t incorporate to much air or too many bubbles (we want a nice smooth and thin batter to bring out the perfect crepe).
Then, carefully sift and mix the flour into the batter in small amounts to avoid any lumps (they will become very obvious when you start to cook them!).
Use some clingfilm to cover the batter and let it rest in the fridge to cool for around 10 minutes. Use this 10-minute period to get your pan ready. Depending on how big you want your crepes to be will depend on your pan.
For example, if you want small crepes, head for the small pan. Likewise, if you want the traditional crepe fillings and the whole authentic sha-bam without leaving the house, you can get your hands on a proper crepe maker and wooden crepe spatula. (Don’t worry, though, you can find one easily on Amazon).
Back to the step-by-step for your crazy crepe recipe. Grease up whichever kitchen pot, pan, skillet or cool device you want to use with some unsalted butter and begin to heat on medium.
When the pan is ready and the batter has chilled, slowly pour onto the pan and tilt to spread an even and thin layer.
In a traditional sense, a crepe is only cooked on one side. However, common trends are much more like the British pancake in that many people like to get both sides down on the heat before throwing the toppings on. This is completely up to you. For a side to cook, it needs around 30-50 seconds on a medium heat.
When the sides are lifting from the pan and there is no liquid batter left on top, you know it’s ready to either flip or serve-up and garnish with whatever your stomach is yearning for.
And that pretty much serves up the last of everything you need to know about the 26 types of crepes you can be tasting on a lazy Sunday morning. Or during the week, there’s no judgement on indulgence here!
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