Serious Eats: Recipes

Eat for Eight Bucks: Olive Oil Crepes with Leeks and Eggs

[Photograph: Cara Eisenpress of Big Girls, Small Kitchen]

Crepes are as simple as pancakes, but so much more elegant, at least in the dinner hours. Crepes and pancakes have the same ingredients, just in different proportions. Those ingredients--flour, eggs, milk, and butter or oil--are cheap, and the most basic of all the pantry items.

When I lived in France, my host mother used to heat up purchased buckwheat crepes with ham and eggs as a dinner last resort, when she was short on time and ingredients. Though she was a good cook, I liked that simple meal as much as anything else she made. You can in fact buy pre-made crepes over here, too, but frying the crepes yourself adds only a little in the way of time and really nothing in the way of ingredients. If your appetite is hearty, you can also crack two eggs over each crepe without straying from the eight-buck budget.

Shopping List: 3 eggs, $0.50 (prorated); 1 leek, $1; 2 ounces gruyere, $2; 1/2 cup milk, $0.75
Pantry Items: Olive Oil, Flour, Garlic, Salt, Pepper, Butter
Total Cost (for 2 portions): $4.25

About the authors: Phoebe and Cara are the co-founders of Big Girls, Small Kitchen, a food and cooking website for twenty-something cooks looking for user-friendly, affordable ways to navigate their kitchens. They have a heated, decade-long rivalry about whose Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie is the best. Their book, In The Small Kitchen, will be published in the spring of 2011 by William Morrow. Visit their blog here.

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