Blintzes the Yiddish word for stuffed breakfast crepes, originally hailing from Central and Eastern Europe, places with very cold winters like Russia, Poland, Hungary. They are a kick-ass way to start the day – talk about walking into the world with some fortification.
It actually turns out that we should be striving to get 25 to 30 grams of protein in the morning, before lunch. When I started working with the Milk Life campaign, I realized that – like most Americans – we were not starting off our days with a good protein platform, but rather taking on most of our daily protein at lunch and especially dinner.
Experts are agreeing that spacing out our intake of protein over the course of the day, not backloading it at the end of the day is the best way to sure your body is getting the most out of the protein that our bodies need. Huh. Now I know.
These sweet filled crepes taste truly decadent, but while you are savoring them you are in fact piling on the protein. The grand total of two of these crepes plus an 8-ounce glass of milk? 31 grams of protein! You are well on your way to taking names and kicking your day’s butt.
The idea of crepe making can unsettle even the most confident cooks amongst us. But deep breaths here – they are simply very thin pancakes, no more no less. Don’t beat yourself up if the first few crepes tear or don’t work out perfectly. They are the practice crepes. Or the snack crepes, as it were. After a few you’ll get the hang of it. And don’t worry if the filled crepes don’t look perfectly shaped – that’s how everyone will know they’re homemade!
This is definitely a breakfast recipe for a weekend, or a morning where you have a bit more time. However, the crepe batter and the filling and the sauce can all be made ahead of time (the crepes can even be tightly wrapped in plastic, slid into a freezer-proof zipper top bag , and frozen), so if you are organized, the whole thing can really come together in minutes, especially if you fry them up as you assemble them. You can even refrigerate the stuffed crepes for a day, and fry those up on a regular old weekday.
To make this creamy crepe — or blintz — filling, all you need to do is blend together farmers cheese, cottage cheese, and cream cheese with some eggs, vanilla and a little lemon zest if you like. Super easy, and all of the ingredients are readily available at the supermarket.
How to Make Breakfast Crepes or Blintzes
Place 3 tablespoons of filling along the top middle of each crepe (don’t be tempted to overstuff the crepes or the filling might seep out as you cook them).
Fold up the top part over the filling.
Fold in the sides.
Then roll up the crepe so the filling is completely encased in a rectangular packet.
Repeat with the rest of the filling and crepes.
Cook, top, and eat! If you cut into the blintzes right away, the filling might be somewhat running – in my book, that’s a -ok, and then the insides mix gorgeously with the fruit topping.
Making Crepes Ahead
You can make the crepes, filling and sauce up to 2 days ahead of time. Cover them well with plastic wrap and store in the fridge. Or wrap them well in plastic, put them into a zipper top freezer proof bag, press to remove all air, and store in the freezer for up to 2 months. You can also prepare the stuffed crepes ahead of time, and store them for a day, well-covered, in the fridge.
And if this to be part of a bigger brunch festival, here are some more dishes to consider adding to the mix:
• Sour Cream Cinnamon Coffee Cake
• Shakshuka with Swiss Chard — Essentially this eggs gently cooked in a vibrant tomato sauce,in this case laced with little piles of chard. The sprinkle of feta on top is a great fresh burst of salty/creamy at the end.
• Migas – A madcap scramble of eggs, tortilla chips, peppers, onions and cheese is the kind of breakfast that make a whole lot of people a whole lot of happy.
• Fried Eggs and Smoked Salmon over Polenta Cakes— the polenta cakes are made the day before, so it mostly frying eggs and assembly.
• Lazy Oven French Toast
• Vegetable Frittata
Creamy Stuffed Breakfast Crepes
For the Crepes:
- 1 cup whole milk
- 4 to 6 tablespoons unsalted butter melted and cooled, divided
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
For the Filling:
- 2 cups small-curd cottage cheese
- 1 cup crumbled farmers cheese
- 1 3-ounce package cream cheese
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 large egg
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon grated lemon zest optional
For the Blueberry Sauce:
- 1 10 ounce package unsweetened frozen blueberries, thawed
- ¼ cup sugar or to taste
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- Make the Crepe batter: In a bowl combine the milk, 2 tablespoons of the melted butter and eggs. Add the flour, sugar and salt and use an electric mixer on low speed to blend the batter until smooth, about 1 minute. Let the batter stand for 45 minutes at room temperature.
- Meanwhile, make the Filling: In a large bowl combine the cottage cheese, cream cheese, farmers cheese, sugar, egg, vanilla and lemon zest, if using, with an electric mixer until fairly smooth, about 1 minute. Keep in the fridge until ready to use.
- Make the Blueberry Sauce: Combine the blueberries, ¼ cup sugar, cornstarch, and juice, in a small saucepan. Heat, stirring frequently, over medium heat until the sauce comes to a simmer. Use a potato masher or a fork to mash up some of the blueberries. Simmer for 1 to 2 minutes until thickened, and taste to see if you want to add more sugar. Set aside and cover to keep warm (if the sauce thickens too much you can stir in a tablespoon or two of hot water).
- Heat a 10-inch skillet over medium heat and brush with a bit of the remaining melted butter. Scoop ¼ cup of crepe batter into the pan and quickly tilt and swirl the pan around so that the batter coats the bottom of the pan. Allow the bottom to set, about 30 seconds, then flip the crepe with a large spatula. Cook for another 30 seconds until the bottom is set and pale golden. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with the remaining melted butter and batter, stacking the crepes on top of each other.
- Place 3 tablespoons of filling along the top middle of each crepe (don’t be tempted to overstuff the crepes or the filling might seep out as you cook them). Fold up the top part over the filling, fold in the sides, then roll up the crepe so the filling is completely encased in a rectangular packet. Repeat with the rest of the filling and crepes.
- Brush a little bit of butter in the skillet over medium high heat. Add as many of the filled crepes as you can fit without crowding. Fry the crepes until golden brown on each side, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Serve hot or warm with blueberry sauce.
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