This lovely dessert comes to us via Anne Burrell of Foodnetwork fame. I watched her make these while I was running on the treadmill one day, and honestly stopped the machine to run to my computer and grab the recipe. It was the end of cherry season, I had just enough cherries on hand, so I got them all pitted and stuck them in the freezer until I had a chance to make this.
I’m just going to say here that this may be one of the best things we’ve eaten all year.
There are 3 components to the dish… the crepes, the filling and the sauce. If you’ve never made crepes before, I will encourage you to give this a try. If you’re an old hand at making them, then this will be a snap. The filling consists of mascarpone cheese, sugar, mini chocolate chips, and I added vanilla extract instead of the cinnamon that Anne used. We loved the vanilla, but use whichever you like.
The cherry compote consists of the cherries, a little sugar and I used balsamic vinegar instead of the lemon juice that Anne suggested. It’s very possible that the balsamic is what made this so impossibly good . The cherries are cooked down with the sugar and balsamic vinegar until thick and syrup-y.
Then basically you spread some of the mascarpone mixture on half of the crepe...
and then fold the top half over that.
Then fold it in half again, creating a sort of triangle.
Place that on your serving plate and top with the cherry compote.
You know how it is when someone raves about a movie and you go in with fairly high expectations, and then there’s almost no way that the movie can measure up to that? I fear I may be creating that scenario here with my exuberance. So I will just say that we enjoyed them (these were SO good!), and should you decide to make them (you really should!!), I think you not be disappointed (OMG!!).
Crepes with Mascarpone, Chocolate Chips and Cherry Compote
1 pint mascarpone, at room temperature
1 cup tiny chocolate chips or finely chopped chocolate
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 pound cherries, pitted and halved (if you use frozen, thaw them, and do not add the splash of water listed below)
1 Meyer lemon, zested and juiced (I used 2 1/2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar)
1 pinch cinnamon (I used a couple teaspoons of vanilla extract)
8 Crepes, recipe follows
In a small bowl combine the mascarpone, chocolate chips, 1/2 cup sugar and a pinch of cinnamon. Set aside. If making more than 2 hours ahead reserve in the refrigerator but let come to room temperature before serving.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the cherries, remaining 3/4 cup sugar, lemon zest and juice (or balsamic vinegar) and a splash of water. Cook until the cherries have let off their juice and the flavor has concentrated, about 10 to 12 minutes. When done the cherries should be very sweet and the juice should be syrupy. Let cool.
Schmear some of the mascarpone/chocolate mixture, about 1/4-inch thick, onto the lower half of a crepe. Fold the top half over the bottom to create a perfect half circle and press to secure. Fold the crepe in half again, to create a loose triangle. Repeat this process with remaining 7 crepes. To serve, arrange 2 triangles on each serving plate and spoon the stewed cherries over the tops.
Makes about 8 crepes
1 cup flour
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup club soda (or warm water)
3 tablespoons of melted butter
1/4 tsp salt
Whisk everything except the flour until well combined and then stir in the flour. Stir quickly to create a smooth, loose batter. If it seems a little thick, add a litte more milk.
Crepe batter can be made up to 2 days in advance, covered and refrigerated.
Melt about a 1/2 teaspoon of butter in a small nonstick saute pan (or spray with cooking spray). The butter should coat the bottom of the pan, if there is a lot of excess, wipe it out with a paper towel. Keep the paper towel handy in case you need it again (you will).
Put the pan over medium heat. Fill a 2-ounce ladle, almost to the top, with batter and pour it into the preheated pan, tipping and rolling the pan, as you ladle the batter, to evenly cover the bottom. This will take a little practice, even when you are an experienced crepe maker the first couple always get wasted. Accept it and move on. (My note: this does not happen if you wait until your pan is hot enough).
When the edges of the crepe begin to pull away from the edges of the pan and the bottom begins to brown a little, turn the crepe over and cook it for about 1 minute on the other side. Remove the crepe from the pan to a plate and let cool. Stack the crepes as they are cooked between parchment paper squares. Repeat this process, until all the batter is used, wiping the pan with your paper towel or melting a little more butter to the pan, as needed. (My note: I have never had a problem stacking crepes on top of each other).