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Fazzoletti with Cheese Sauce

Crespelle con Quattro Formaggio
In Tuscany, crepes are called crespelle (little hankies because of how the crepes are folded).  They are known elsewhere in Italy as fazzoletti.  The most memorable ones were served in Torgiano at Tre Vaselle where Chef Angelo turns them out with lightning speed with all the action centered in the wrist as he flips each one.  Serve them as a first course.  Crespelle can be made and frozen in single layers and filled when ready to use. Serves 8 to 10
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Ingredients

Filling

6 tablespoons unsalted butter

3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

6 cups milk

1/2 cup cubed Asiago cheese (about 2 ounces)

1/2 cup cubed Italian Fontina cheese (about 2 ounces)

1/2 cup cubed Provolone cheese (about 2 ounces)

1/3 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1 teaspoon grated nutmeg

Batter

1 3/4 cups unbleached all- purpose flour

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon grated nutmeg

2 large eggs, beaten

1 large egg yolk, beaten

1 1/2 to 1 3/4 cups milk

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted

3 tablespoons grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese

Directions

To make the batter, sift the flour, salt, and nutmeg together into a large bowl. Add the beaten eggs and egg yolk, 1-1/2 cups of the milk, and the butter. Whisk the mixture until smooth and the consistency of pancake batter. If the batter seems too thin, add a little more flour; if too thick, add a little milk.  Set aside in fridge for one hour.

To make the filling, melt the butter over low heat in a large (6 quart) saucepan.  Add the flour and whisk to blend well.  Slowly add the milk, stirring constantly until smooth.  Raise the heat to medium high and cook, stirring constantly, for about 10 minutes, or until the sauce coats the back of the spoon.  

Turn off the heat and add the cubed and grated cheeses, salt, pepper, and nutmeg.  Stir until smooth.  Cover to keep warm and set aside.

To make the crepes, lightly butter a 6 or 8-inch crepe pan or a non-stick frying pan.  Heat over medium heat.  When the pan is hot, add 1/4 cup of the batter and swirl the pan to make sure the bottom is evenly coated with a thin layer of batter. Cook 1 to 2 minutes, or until lightly browned on the underside.  Flip the crespella over and cook the other side until lightly browned.  Transfer it to a sheet of wax paper.

Repeat with the remaining batter, stacking each crespella between wax paper as you make them. Lightly grease the pan every so often with a little butter to prevent the batter from sticking.

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Butter a 9 X 12 inch baking dish.

Spread about 3 tablespoons of the filling over each crespella, making sure to cover the surface evenly.  Fold each one in half, then in half again, and place them in the baking dish, slightly overlapping them.  Spoon the remaining filling over the crespelle and sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

Bake for 20 minutes, or until piping hot.  Run the crespelle under the broiler for 1 to 2 minutes to brown the top, and serve immediately.

This recipe is featured on show 2906 – Little Hankies Two Ways.

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