Sunday, January 1, 2012

Crepe Suzette with White Chocolate and Orange Ice Cream

Last year I was at a party which, to say true, was quite boring until I found a person who shared my passion for food and was eager to talk about it. It was a middle aged woman who traveled a lot in her life and, therefore, was familiar with different cuisines. As I mentioned France, she noticed that this country has always been associated for her with a simple, yet very traditional dish – Crepe Suzette. At that point it suddenly occurred to me: how did it happen that I had never ever cooked this classic dessert? It was definitely a gap in my culinary knowledge to be filled. So, that same week I was making the orange sauce and flambéing my lacy crepes for the first time.

Actually this dish turned out to be a perfect breakfast for our family since my husband loves oranges (there was even a period of time in his life when he started every single day with this fruit) and, well, show me a Russian who would refuse to have crepes for breakfast! Of course, it’s a bit abnormal to indulge in an ice-cream at 8 am, but I can repeat it again and again: I don’t see anything wrong in giving yourself a treat at any time of the day.

Last time when I made Crepe Suzette I had a homemade white chocolate and orange ice-cream which amazingly complimented the dish (in a much more stunning way than a traditional vanilla one). I guess from now on I will always place a scoop of this tangy ice-cream next to my flaming crepes!


White chocolate and orange ice cream (recipe adapted from “Gastronom” magazine)
3 egg yolks
45 gm castor sugar
200 ml milk
200 ml single cream
75 gm white chocolate, grated
2 tbsp orange zest
2 tbsp Cointreau

80 gm plain flour
1 tbsp sugar
a pinch of salt
1 egg
160 ml milk
2 tbsp canola oil

Orange sauce
250 ml orange juice
4 tbsp orange zest
30 gm butter
¼ cup castor sugar
2 tbsp vanilla sugar
2 tbsp Cointreau


  1. For the ice cream, heat milk and cream till it just begins to boil. Whisk egg yolks and sugar till pale and thick; add hot milk and cream in a slow but steady stream, whisking vigorously. Add 2 tsp of orange zest and place the bowl with the egg yolk mixture over a pan of simmering water and cook, stirring, till it thickens. Strain through a sieve and add the chocolate and the remaining orange zest. Stir till the chocolate dissolves. Allow to cool, and then add Cointreau. Transfer to a container and freeze overnight.
  2. For the crepes, mix together the sieved flour with sugar and salt. Make a well in the centre and add a slightly beaten egg into it. Whisk starting in the centre and drawing in the flour. Add the milk, a little at a time, whisking until the batter is the consistency of thick cream. Add 1 tbsp of oil to the batter, cover it with a cling film and leave at room temperature to rest for one hour.
  3. Grease a 20 cm pan with some of the remainig oil and put it over high heat. Ladle in crepe mixture, turning the pan to coat the base completely. Cook for 1 – 2 minutes until golden and lacy. Turn over and cook for 10 – 15 seconds on the other side. Remove to a plate. Repeat using the remaining batter to make 5 more crepes.
  4. For the sauce, heat 15 gm butter, 2 tbsp of castor sugar and 1 tbsp of vanilla sugar till the sugar dissolves. Add 2 tbsp orange zest and 125 ml orange juice and bring to a boil. Put 3 folded crepes to the pan and sauté for a few minutes till the crepes are covered with the sauce.
  5. Add 1 tbsp Cointreau to the pan and flambé. Transfer the crepes with the sauce to a plate and serve with a scoop of white chocolate and orange ice cream. Repeat to make a second portion.


  1. Since the ice cream has the liquor in it, there’s no need to churn it – the resulting texture will be creamy anyway.
  2. You can flambé the crepes while they are still in a pan or do it another way: the trick that I learnt at one five star hotel is to heat a big metal spoon with Cointreau over high heat and to pour the flaming liquor over the pre-plated crepes.

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