Chocolate & Walnut Crêpes/Palacinke (Lidia Bastianich)

"These crêpes are often served with only a sprinkle of sugar or a bit of home-preserved fruits. Sometimes palacinke were more elaborate: filled with ricotta and baked or layered like a cake with different fillings in between. But the most luxurious—and Lidia's favourite—are palacinke spread with melted chocolate. You can use this recipe with any spread you like. This recipe is from her cookbook, "Lidia's Italy: 140 Simple and Delicious Recipes from the Ten Places in Italy Lidia Loves Most"."
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Ready In:
12 crêpes




  • To make the palacinke batter, whisk together the eggs, 2 cups water, the rum, vanilla, sugar, and salt in a large bowl, until well blended. Sift the flour on top, a bit at a time, whisking each addition in until smooth. Drizzle in 4 tablespoons of the melted butter, whisking until the batter has slightly thickened, with the consistency of melted ice cream. Finally, whisk in the lemon zest. Put the remaining 4 tablespoons of melted butter in a small cup and keep it warm.
  • Break or chop the chocolate into small pieces, and put them in a bowl set in a pan of hot (not boiling) water. When the chocolate begins to melt, stir until completely smooth, and keep it warm, in the water, off the heat.
  • Set the crêpe pan or skillet over medium-high heat until quite hot. Pour in a couple tablespoons of the reserved melted butter, quickly swirl it all over the pan bottom, then pour excess butter back into the cup, leaving the bottom lightly coated with sizzling butter. (If the butter doesn't sizzle, heat the pan longer before adding the batter.) Immediately ladle in a scant 1/3 cup of batter, tilt and swirl so it coats the bottom, and set the pan on the burner.
  • Lower the heat to medium, and cook the palacinka for a little less than a minute, until the underside is lightly browned in a lacy pattern. Flip it over with a spatula, and fry for ½ minute or longer, until the second side is lightly browned, then remove it to a warm platter. Heat the empty pan briefly, then rapidly coat it with butter, fill it with batter, and cook another palacinka. Repeat the sequence, stacking up the finished palacinke on the platter, until all the batter is used up.
  • Fill and serve the palacinke as soon as possible, while fresh and warm. Keep the platter in a warm spot, and cover the stack with a tent of foil or a large bowl turned upside down. Whip the heavy cream, unsweetened or with sugar to taste, to soft peaks. Stir the melted chocolate, and reheat it if necessary so it is smooth and warm.
  • Take one palacinka off the stack, and place it with its lacy patterned side down. Spoon a generous tablespoon (or more) warm chocolate in the center of the pancake, and spread it over the palacinka, leaving an inch-wide border uncoated. Scatter a spoonful of chopped walnuts on the chocolate layer, then fold the round in half, hiding the fillings, and fold again into a plump quarter-round.
  • Fill and fold all the palacinke the same way. For each serving, place two quarter-rounds, overlapping, on a dessert plate, heap some cream on top, scatter some nuts on top of the cream, and drizzle warm chocolate in streaks and squiggles over the palacinke and the plate.

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