Nutty and toasty hazelnut butter adds a flavour reminiscent of browned butter to these vegan crêpes – topped with maple cinnamon roasted apples, extra hazelnut butter and perhaps a little coconut yoghurt or whipped coconut cream, these crêpes are perfect served as a special weekend breakfast or as a beautiful Autumn dessert.
Just look at these pretty apples! With their little curling leaves still attached, and their blushing skins mottled shades of red, pink and yellow. Autumn produce is the most beautiful isn’t it?! I think it’s why I love the season best – apples, figs, persimmon, pumpkin, plums, the beginnings of the citrus. There’s such cosiness in their colours; they make me want to rug up with huge blankets whilst wrapping my hands around a steaming mug of hot chocolate, replete with marshmallows and all of the cinnamon and then dive into a deep bowl of apple crumble; they make me want to break out my knits and onesies… but, living where I do does not allow for such picture perfect transitioning of the seasons – it’s a little more black and white here. Still, I can feel a changing in the air.
The farmer’s market this weekend was filled with all kinds of seasonal offerings – the figs dared me to buy them all, and four of the squishy persimmons came home with me wrapped in newspaper (with an extra one thrown in by the farmer for good measure). A huge pumpkin is currently sitting on my table, replacing the usual flowers with a kind of vegetable grandeur. Apples with their little leaves still attached, like the ones pictured here, sit upon a platter next to the pumpkin; though admittedly their numbers are dwindling quickly as I can’t resist them when they look so perfect.
Oh! And, I found my first pomegranate of the season! I was running low on $$$ so could only afford to buy one with my scraped up market change, but I’m excited! And next week I’ll be sure to take more money along so I can take all of the Autumnal goodness home with me.
More excitingly than all of that though, was the kilo bag of freshly picked hazelnuts in their shells that I picked up from the apple farmers: they taste like nutella and are so gloriously sweet and nutty! I buy a kilo or two (or more!) every year when they come along, and I never let any go to waste. The first thing I did when I brought them home (after cracking a few open and eating them just as they were), was make fresh hazelnut butter.
First I cracked the nuts out of their shells, then roasted them in a 200 (400 fahrenheit) degree oven until they were lightly golden and filling the house with a wonderful smell, then I poured them into a tea towel and rubbed off their darkened skins, after which I blended them up in a food processor till they turned to butter. I didn’t add a single thing to the butter as I wanted it to be as natural as possible to use in the crêpes I had dreamt up, though for my next lot I may add a pinch of salt and a little maple to liven it up for toast spreading and the like.
Sooooo the crêpes! My all time favourite crêpe recipe used to be the one from Fanny Zanotti’s Paris Pastry Club cookbook. The ‘browned butter crêpes’. The browned butter in the batter added the most glorious toasty hazelnut flavour, and along with 2 whole vanilla beans made the crêpes something truly special and decadent. I made them every other weekend, then when I went vegan I struggled for a long time to create a crêpe recipe that matched those of my memory. I missed the subtle perfection that were Fanny’s crêpes.
So I got to work re-creating those crêpes in a plant-based way, and I was finally able to create a wonderful crêpe recipe after many failures – but that toasty hazelnut flavour from the browned butter was still missing! That is, until I decided to add the roasted hazelnut butter that I made into the crêpe batter in place of the oil. And just like that, the crêpes of my dreams were born. All toasty hazelnut and vanilla flavoured, thin and soft with slightly crisp edges, and that perfect golden patchy pattern decorating the top. Love at first crêpe.
The apples were a natural pairing – it’s Autumn after all – AND the apples came from the same farm that the hazelnuts came from! I feel like that can only be a good thing for a recipe. They grew so close to one another, they’re already acquainted. Friends even. They are definitely going to get along in a recipe. This was my profound reasoning anyway.
So after the apples had a quick bath in a maple-y cinnamon sugar mix and a roast in the oven, they came out all tender and caramelised and were happily folded up in the hazelnut butter crêpes along with some extra hazelnut butter. A scoop of sweetened vanilla coconut yoghurt, a dusting of icing sugar and a drizzle of the spiced syrup left in the pan from roasting the apples and they were all set. We served them for brunch on Sunday after the morning farmer’s market trip with big mugs of coffee swirled with creamy homemade almond milk.
They are super easy, though the frying of the crêpes may take some practice if you aren’t already attuned with the art of crêpe making – but you do need to rest the crêpe batter for at least 1 – 2 hours and preferably overnight if you can; whisk up the batter the night before, it only takes a few minutes, then in the morning you will be all ready to fry your perfect crêpes! The overnight rest really is best, an hour or two will do in a pinch but in my experience the flavour is no where near as complex and the texture falls a bit short compared to the ones that have been rested for a longer period.
Oh and, it goes without saying – these would be incredible served for dessert with some whipped coconut cream or ice-cream, like really really good. I’m planning on it this weekend. It’ll be a good time. I may even skip dinner… crêpes for dinner anyone?!
Hope you love this recipe and you’re feeling happy and glad to be alive this week – in the wake of all the crap happening in the world at the moment (and always really), it’s nice to stop and appreciate what we have… I for one, am very grateful that these crêpes are in my life. Because I could probably be happy with a plate of these crêpes and nothing else. At least until I ate them all, then I’d just be sad that all my crêpes were gone. Food is love! Feed some people or yourself these and be happy :)
If you make this recipe or any others, be sure to take a picture and tag me #theflouredkitchen @theflouredkitchen on insta (or twitter @flouredkitchen, or [email protected]) so I can see! Have a good one guys, and enjoy the Autumn and Spring produce coming your way!
Hazelnut Butter Crêpes + Maple Cinnamon Roasted Apples
Yield 6-8 crêpes
vegan, egg-free, dairy-free, soy-free, cane sugar free
Nutty and toasty hazelnut butter adds a flavour reminiscent of browned butter to these vegan crêpes - topped with maple cinnamon roasted apples, extra hazelnut butter and perhaps a little coconut yoghurt or whipped coconut cream, these crêpes are perfect served as a special weekend breakfast or as a beautiful Autumn dessert.
notes: The crêpe batter needs to rest in the fridge for at least 1 - 2 hours and preferably overnight for the best flavour and texture.
You may need to lower or increase the heat of your stovetop as you cook the crêpes, use the first crêpe as a temperature guide!
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp chickpea flour (this acts as a binder and egg replacer)
- 1/4 tsp. sea salt
- 1 cup almond milk (i use homemade for the best flavour) - you may need up to 1/2 cup or so more to achieve the correct consistency
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tbsp hazelnut butter (make sure the hazelnuts have been roasted, i.e. not raw, for the best nutty, toasty flavour)
- 1 - 2 vanilla beans, seeds scraped (use 2 for the ultimate decadent breakfast), or 2 tsp. vanilla paste / 1 tbsp vanilla extract
maple roasted apples
- 5 medium, firm apples - cores removed and apples sliced into thick half moons
- 5 tbsp maple syrup
- a squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp olive oil or coconut oil
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- little pinch of fine sea salt
- crack or 2 of black pepper
- a little splash of bourbon - optional
- extra hazelnut butter
- coconut yoghurt or lightly sweetened whipped coconut cream
- a little icing sugar to sieve on top (optional)
- the syrup from the apple roasting dish
- chopped toasted hazelnuts (optional)
make the batter
- Whisk the all-purpose flour, chickpea flour and salt together in a medium bowl and make a well in the middle.
- In a large-ish measuring jug, whisk together the milk, maple syrup, hazelnut butter and vanilla beans seeds. Slowly begin pouring the mix into the well of the dry mix, whisking to incorporate - continue until you have incorporated the wet mix into the dry. The batter should have a slightly thick single cream consistency (or for a vegan comparison - like canned coconut milk, runny but slightly thick). If it's too thick, whisk in a little more milk until you have the correct consistency.
- Pour into a large jug, cover with an air tight covering and rest the batter in the fridge for at least an hour or 2 - for the best results, rest overnight. I tried skipping this step multiple times, it doesn't work out well! Rest that batter!
make the roasted apples
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius / 400 fahrenheit. Place the sliced apples on a lined baking tray or in a large roasting dish that can fit them in one even layer. Mix all of the other ingredients together in a little jug and pour over the apples. Toss well to make sure the apples are evenly coated.
- Bake for about 15 - 20 minutes (depending on the type of apples / how thick your slices are) or until the apples are tender but not mushy, basting the apples with the maple syrup as they cook.
cook the crêpes
- Set your oven to the keep warm setting (keep the tray of apples in the oven so they stay warm). Heat a crêpe pan / non-stick pan on a medium high heat. When the pan is heated up, brush the pan with a tiny bit of olive oil / coconut oil and give the crêpe batter a gentle mix to combine. Pick up the pan, then with your free hand, pour about 1/4 - 1/3 cup of batter into the center of the pan and tilt and swirl it around to cover the pan with a thin layer of batter (if it is not spreading easily, you may need to add a little more milk to the remaining batter).
- Place the pan back on the heat. Wait until the crêpe starts to look set on top, and the edges a little golden, then lift up the edge to check that it's light golden brown in patches underneath (about 2 - 3 minutes). Loosen the edges of the crêpe with a spatula, then gently slide the spatula under the crêpe and carefully flip it over. You may need to use your fingers to help flip the crêpe over. Cook until the second side is set and light golden brown in places (about 1 minute). Remove from the pan, place on a plate and cover with a tea towel. Place in the warm oven while you repeat this with the rest of the batter.
- Spread a little hazelnut butter on one half of a crêpe, then top with a scoop of the roasted maple apples. Fold the other half of the crêpe over the top, then fold in half again so you have a filled triangular crêpe pocket. Serve with a dusting of icing sugar and a scattering of chopped toasted hazelnuts if you'd like, a drizzle of the syrup from the apple roasting dish, and a scoop of coconut yoghurt or whipped coconut cream. I serve 1 - 2 filled crêpes per person.
Courses Breakfast, Dessert