Saturday, August 7, 2010

Day 218: Crepe Cake with Raspberry Chipotle Sauce

Today's recipe is the Crepe Cake we made at the Wasatch County Fair Cook Off.  I originally found the recipe at a site called And Now for Something Completely Delicious and we adapted it with a raspberry chipotle sauce.  It is really a pretty cake, and we thought it would be really challenging in a dutch oven.  We also wanted to use a raspberry chipotle sauce in our dessert to make it memorable.  We had practiced this recipe and felt like we could make it work and make it beautiful.  Unfortunately, everything doesn't always go as planned.  These pictures are from the site where I found the recipe to give you an idea of what it should look like.

It is crepes layered with a yummy cream filling.  When we practiced this recipe we had problems with the crepes being all different shapes, and as you can see, they really need to be the same.  We solved that problem by cutting down a #10 can and cooking the crepes in it to get a nice round shape.  I'm sorry I forgot to take a picture of it, but I'll be making some savory crepes  in the next few days so I'll have some pics then. 

When you make crepes in a dutch oven, you can't do it in the oven itself.  There is no way to turn them over and have them look nice.  You have to make them on a lid turned upside down.  Most dutch oven lids are concave so the crepe batter runs into the center of the lid.  For crepes, you need a flat lid.  Camp chef makes a really nifty oven that has a flat lid with little short legs on it.  It is perfect for crepes or pancakes or cookies.  It doesn't even need to be propped up with bricks.  This is what the lid looks like.

On a normal day, crepes cook pretty fast, but in the rain it took forever.  One tip is to make sure you're using a hot pan and that the coals stay hot.  Don't be afraid to add coals.  Each crepe should only take a couple of minutes to cook so they are tough to burn if you watch them.  Another tip, spray the lid with Pam.  It works better than butter or oil.

Okay, on to the recipe.

Crepe Cake with Raspberry Chipotle Sauce
10" dutch oven lid

Crepe batter

6 tablespoon unsalted butter
3 cups whole milk
6 eggs
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
7 tablespoon sugar
pinch salt
about 1/2 tsp. lemon extract  (you just want a hint of lemon flavor)

In a small dutch oven over a full spread of coals, heat the milk (do not bring to a boil). Pour out of the dutch oven and let cool for 10 minutes. Wipe out the oven with a paper towel and then cook the butter until it turns a light brown color.  Meanwhile, in a stand mixer mix together the flour, sugar, eggs, and salt. Slowly add the hot milk and the brown butter while mixing. Pour into a bowl, cover, and refrigerate overnight.  (We just put ours on ice until it was cold.)

To make the crepes, bring the batter to room temperature. Place a flat dutch oven lid over a full spread of coals.  Allow the lid to get nice and hot. Brush with oil or melted butter or spray with Pam non-stick cooking spray. Add a 1/4 cup of batter and swirl it around until it completely covers the bottom of the pan. Cook until the edges turn light brown, loosen with a spatula and flip over. Cook the other side for only 10 seconds. Flip out onto a plate lined with parchment paper. Repeat until you have 20 crepes, or run out of batter.

Pastry cream:

2 cups whole milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
6 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch, sifted
3 1/2 tablespoon sugar

Bring the milk just to a boil over a full spread of coals. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Pour out of the dutch oven and let stand for 10 minutes. Wipe out the dutch oven with a paper towel and combine the egg yolks, sugar, and corn starch. Slowly add all of the hot milk, whisking continuously. Place the pan over high heat and bring the mixture to a boil, still continuing to whisk. The mixture will thicken in 1-2 minutes. Once it is thick, immediately remove from heat, pour into a shallow dish and refrigerate until chilled (can be chilled overnight along with the batter).

Sweetened whipped cream

2 cups heavy whipping cream
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

When ready to assemble the cake, make sweetened whipped cream. Beat the heavy whipping cream at high speed for several minutes until stiff. Add the sugar and vanilla. Fold the whipped cream into the pastry cream and mix until smooth and incorporated.

 Raspberry Chipotle Sauce

2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries (thaw and drain if using frozen)
chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, finely chopped

In a bowl, mash the berries and sweeten to taste.  Add enough chipotle peppers to give it a nice kick.  You want to bite into the cake and say "wow".  Make it hotter than you think you should because once it is mixed with the pastry cream the heat will be milder.  Mix the raspberry sauce into the pastry cream right before assembling the cake.  Add enough to give it a nice pink color and a spicy kick.  You can always add more peppers if you need to.

To assemble the cake, begin by placing a crepe down on your display plate or cake stand. Spread a thin layer of the pastry cream onto the crepe. Cover with a crepe and repeat with all twenty crepes, ending with the prettiest crepe on top. Chill for at least 2 hours. Bring the cake back up to room temperature slightly before slicing. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and garnish with berries and mint leaves.

The Finished Product

The Review

If the pastry cream would have worked and not been so runny, I think we could have won the dessert category.  This is a really good recipe, it was just a bad day for us to make it.  Even the way it was it tasted good.  I love the kick the chipotle peppers gave it.  It is also a very elegant and pretty dessert.  I don't know if I'll do it in a dutch oven next time, but I'll make it again.  It would be super easy on the stove top.  Grade A.


  1. Your blog just makes me happy! You're awesome!

  2. I think yous looks so pretty. I once had a savoury crepe stack that was joined with cream cheese and smoked salmon that was very nice.

  3. Wow! That is ambitious in a Dutch oven! I think I would like to try this not in a dutch oven! It looks like a great, beautiful recipe! Sorry you didn't win the contest...that pesty weather! This August has been unusually cold and rainy! Joni

  4. You must do this for the state fair. It looks awesome!!!

  5. Yummy!

    I used to work in a Creperie and we used a tool called a "Routeau" which was basically a half inch dowel 6-8 inches long fitted to a handle in a "T" shape. Using this to skim the crepe evenly in a circle creates perfect 12" crepes every time, just make sure to use enough batter.

  6. Thanks for all the nice comments! It was a really difficult dessert to do in a dutch oven and with the chill times it was even harder. It was really good though and I learned a lot making it!


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