Rye Crepes with Pear and Cheddar Recipe | PBS Food

Rye Crepes with Pear and Cheddar

Rye Crepes recipe

Make savory or sweet combinations for this Rye Crepes recipe. (Recipe Credit: Aube Giroux of Kitchen Vignettes)


Yield: 4 to 6 people (makes about 12 crepes)



  • For the Crepe Batter:
  • 3/4 cup unbleached white flour
  • 3/4 cup rye flour
  • 1 3/4 cups milk
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 Tbsp melted butter
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • For the Filling:
  • 4 Tbsp unmelted butter for cooking
  • 8 oz grated strong cheddar
  • 6 medium large pears, sliced thinly with skins on (choose a juicy variety such as Anjou or Bartlett, preferably organic)


  1. Sift together the rye and unbleached white flours. In a large bowl, add the salt to the flours and whisk together well. (If you want a sweet crepe, whisk 2 tablespoons of cane sugar into the flour mixture). Crack the eggs into the flour and add a bit of the milk. Begin to stir the mixture with a whisk or a wooden spoon. It will be hard at first, but stir well, gradually adding the milk in small increments and mixing between each addition. The batter will become smoother and smoother. If you add the milk too quickly, you will have lumps in your batter (which you can always strain out). Crepe batter is much thinner than pancake batter. Your batter should have the consistency somewhere between half and half cream and heavy cream. If the batter is too heavy, add water to it, one tablespoonful at a time. You will probably need to add around 3 Tbsp of water to get the right consistency. It's better to err on the side of a batter that's too thick, because you can easily thin it down with a bit more water after your first test crepe.
  2. Once you have a light and smooth batter, cover it and let it stand for a minimum of 30 minutes and up to 60 minutes. Or even better, make the batter a day in advance and let it rest in the fridge to use the next day. When you’re ready to make the crepes, you have the option of running the batter through a fine mesh sieve. You don’t have to do this, but I like to do so especially with whole grain crepes because it gets a bit (not all) of the excess bran out of the batter (as well as any lumps) and makes a more uniform crepe. After straining the batter, add the melted butter into the batter and whisk vigorously.
  3. Heat a large skillet (ideally 8 inches or bigger) on medium heat. I prefer a cast iron skillet, but a stainless steel or non-stick skillet generally work as well. Once your pan has heated up (about 3 minutes), place a small nub of butter (about 1 tsp) in the pan and swirl it around to cover the bottom of the skillet. The butter should sizzle (if it doesn't your pan is probably not hot enough). However, the butter shouldn't burn either (that means the pan is too hot). Ladle in about 1/4 cup of batter and quickly swirl the batter around to cover the whole bottom of the pan. Once the top of the crepe has cooked (no longer liquid), check to see if the bottom is browning. Once it has browned a bit, you can carefully loosen the crepe using a spatula, and flip it over. Cook the underside just a bit, about a minute or so should be plenty. Having a hot enough pan is key to making a good crepe. However, you don’t want the pan to be too hot either. You will have to find the “sweet spot” by making a couple of test crepes. The first couple of crepes are generally messy, so don’t worry. You will settle into a groove once the pan reaches a good temperature. Assemble the crepes hot off the skillet or stack them on an oven-proof plate and keep them warm in an oven heated to the lowest possible setting until ready to assemble.
  4. If the pears you're using are nice and juicy, you don't need to pre-cook them. However, if your pears are on the dry side, sauté them lightly in a small skillet on medium heat in 1 Tbsp. butter. Cook them just until their juices are released and they have softened somewhat (about 3 minutes).
  5. To assemble, place a cooked crepe in the crepe skillet and scatter about 3 Tbsp grated cheddar cheese down the center of the crepe. Add a generous amount of sliced pears, and fold each side of the crepe towards the center. Allow the crepe to cook a bit more until the cheddar in the middle has melted.
  6. Serve hot. Optional add-ons include maple syrup, red pepper jelly, or a nice chutney.
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