Mille Crepe Cake with Vanilla Custard
Ok, now there are a lot of amazing looking (and am sure amazing tasting!) mille crepe cakes out there, but this is one decadent dessert I had been dying to make! So one day my friend S and I decided to just go for it. Of course we didn't have any special ingredients so decided to just make one with ingredients available in our pantry. Now that I look back at that decision, it sounds a bit crazy as who prepares a mille crepe cake with NO prior planning..whoa!!! But then looking at the end result, am I glad we went for it.
Mille crepe cake literally translated means cake made up of a 1000 crepes. Now while noone really uses 1000 crepes to make the cake, one does make about 20 odd crepes, stack them on top of each other with a layer of a decadent filling topping every layer. We used custard for the filling and dusted it with some cocoa powder and nuts which was really great for a 1st time effort. However next time I will surely try the more elaborate mille crepe cake recipes with hazelnut cream, raspberry vanilla custard and the like.
For now, am basking in the glow and happiness of our 1st successful unplanned attempt at putting together this wonderful mille crepe cake ;)! This is my entry to Domestic Goddess' Sugar High Friday - The Sweetest Thing event. She asks fellow bloggers to make and blog about the dessert they crave for most. Totally looking forward to the roundup.
Mille Crepe Cake with Vanilla Custard
For the Crepes Batter: Adapted from New York Times *
1. 3 tablespoons butter
2. 1 1/2 cups milk
3. 3 eggs
4. 3/4 cups flour
5. 3 1/2 tablespoons sugar
6. Pinch salt
For the Filling
1. 1 pack of vanilla custard mix (I used Weikfield's)
2. 1 cup roasted hazelnuts (you could use almonds, walnuts, pecans etc)
3. 2 tsp cocoa powder
4. 2 tsp powdered sugar
Crepes: Adapted from New York Times*
1. In a heated pan, cook the butter until its a hazelnut brown and set aside to cool
2. In another pan, heat the milk until it starts steaming. Cool for 10 minutes
3. In a mixer on medium-low speed, beat together the eggs, flour, sugar and salt
4. Slowly add the hot milk and browned butter
5. Remove in a container and let cool.
6. Heat a 9 inch non stick pan, and swab it with some oil. Pour some batter onto the pan with a deep ladle and make sure its spread thinly across the pan
7. Cook the crepe until the bottom begins to brown. Then flip the crepe and cook on the other side for no longer than 5 seconds
8. Remove the crepe and place onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat until you have 20 good crepes.
These were the tastiest crepes that I have ever tasted. I think the trick was to cook the butter as the NYT article suggested.
Filling & Final Assembly
1. Prepare the custard as per packet instructions.
2. Once the custard is set, start the cake assembly.
3. For the assembly, lay 1 crepe on a cake plate. Using a spatula, cover the crepe with a thin layer of the custard. Add some toasted hazelnuts. Cover this with a crepe and repeat the layering process till you have 20 crepes stacked on top of each other with a layer of custard between each layer. I didn't put nuts for every layer, but added them every 4-5 crepes or so
4. Cover the crepe with a plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes at the very least
5. Sprinkle the cocoa powder and powdered sugar and caramalize the top with a blow torch if you have one. Since we didn't have a blow torch, we just heated the bottom of a clean pan, and placed the heated pan over the top of the cake :)
The result was a truly great tasting crepe cake, where the buttery smoky flavor of the crepes went very well with the vanilla flavor of the custard and the crunchiness of the hazelnuts. One caveat however is that given that we used custard for the filling, the cake didn't taste as great the next day!!
* The NYT batter recipe was adapted by them from the "Joy of Cooking."