Chocolate Hazelnut Crêpes with Hazelnut Cream

Serves 6
18 chocolate crêpes

2 large eggs
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted



In a food processor or blender, combine the eggs, sugar, milk, and vanilla and process until smooth. Add the flour, cocoa powder, and salt and process again until smooth. Finally, add the butter and process until mixed. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

To cook the crêpes: Heat a 6-inch nonstick or seasoned crêpe pan over medium heat. Pour in about 1 tablespoon of the batter and quickly rotate the pan, spreading it in a thin layer over the entire bottom. Cook the crêpe until set on the bottom, about 1 minute. Loosen the edge of the crêpe with the edge of a knife or your fingers and turn it over. Cook until the second side is set, about 15 seconds. Continue to make crêpes in this manner until you have used all of the batter, stacking the crêpes so that they overlap slightly.

The batter may be made a day in advance and kept refrigerated. The crêpes may be made 1 day ahead, covered, and refrigerated. They can also be stacked, with pieces of waxed paper between them, well wrapped in plastic wrap, and frozen for up to 1 week.

Hazelnut Cream

1/3 cup (2 ounces) hazelnuts, toasted and skinned and then coarsely chopped
3/4 cup mascarpone cheese
1 teaspoon hazelnut liqueur such as Frangelico or rum
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup hazelnut liqueur such as Frangelico
Pinch of kosher salt
2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter
1/2 cup Chocolate Sauce (page 000), warmed

To make the cream: In a small bowl, combine the hazelnuts, mascarpone, liqueur, sugar, and cream and stir until combined. Cover and refrigerate until needed.


To make the sauce and serve the dessert:
Fold each crêpe into quarters. In a large sauté pan, combine the sugar, water, orange juice, lemon juice, liqueur, and salt over medium heat. Cook, stirring, until the sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes. Place 9 of the folded crêpes in the pan and cook them until they are warmed through on the underside, about 10 seconds. Turn them over and cook for 5 seconds to warm through on the second side. Using a spatula, transfer the crêpes to individual plates, placing 3 crêpes on each plate.

Heat the remaining crêpes in the same manner, and divide evenly among 3 more plates.

Increase the heat to medium-high and add the butter to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture begins to thicken to a light sauce consistency, about 2 minutes. Spoon the sauce evenly over the crêpes and then top evenly with the hazelnut cream. Drizzle the warm chocolate sauce over the crêpes. Serve immediately.


Bittersweet Chocolate Sauce

3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

Heat the cream over medium heat in a heavy bottomed saucepot until almost boiling. Turn off the heat, add the chocolate and cover. Let sit 5 minutes. Remove the cover and whisk until smooth.

Do Ahead
The chocolate sauce can be made up to a week in advance. Reheat in a double boiler or microwave.


Planning Ahead
See the crêpe recipe for directions on making the crêpes in advance. The hazelnut cream may be made up to 8 hours in advance, covered, and stored in the refrigerator. The sauce should be made just before serving.