Once every September comes along, the change doesn’t lie in the season but in life. September is usually a season of beginnings for students and even working professionals and it can also be the end of a chapter. There have been some things that occurred that I liked and that I didn’t expect to happen but with the constant tide washing against of our bloated economy, I guess I shouldn’t have been so surprised. Two things that make my world come full circle again is faith and food.
Food…like crepes or blintzes.
Blintzes were one of my favorite childhood meals. They reminded me of my dad’s family in Poland. For the longest while, I thought it was a Polish thing but with like many popular dishes I found, there’s a familiarity there based on the interpretation and style of the culture. That’s pretty cool. Crepes are consumed in many cultures, better known as crepes in some cultures, pancakes in others and blintzes to the Poles.
There was once a small Polish deli and restaurant in Wildwood, NJ that specialized on authentic Polish cuisine. When I saw blintzes were on the menu advertised just as my family always called it, I grew excited and opted for the blueberry cheese blintzes. It took some time but the blintzes arrived to me served warm with a cream cheese and ricotta rolled up tightly in a thinly wrapped disc made of egg, sugar and flour that was sprinkled with powdered sugar and adorned with a fresh blueberry sauce. It looked decadent and tasted like grandmother’s kitchen so much that I wish could marry the old world charm of authencity and decadence. But I was a girl about ten who couldn’t fathom getting my blintzes to look or taste this good. So, I looked forward to summer pilgrimages to Wildwood for this restaurant.
The restaurant is no longer there now. It would have been a sole part of ancient history if I showed a lack of interest in cooking. The summer ritual may be gone, but the tradition and the family recipe is still kept alive passed down from generation to generation with a few tweaks along the way.
The sugar and flour discs resemble thin pancakes that are usually filled with fruit, cheeses or even preserves that are sprinkled generously with powdered sugar. This is a blintz in a primal form but a Google search on the Internet will bounce back a wealth of creative recipes. In the spirit of this fasting blog, I’m going to eventually experiment with a vegan/soy free recipe and a vegan and gluten free recipe that’s just ideal without sacrificing taste. For now, if it’s the basic primal blintz recipe you need, I have you covered.
Before we get started, you need to learn how to do the batter before you can add your desired filling. As its coming on Fall and in the spirit of apple picking, why not using some crisp Granny Smiths with a hint of cinnamon for a taste that’s part blintz and part apple pie.
Apple Cinnamon Blintzes (Contains Dairy!)
Makes: 1 dozen. Cost: $12 and under
4 organic eggs
1 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup water
pinch of sea salt
1 tsp vanilla (optional but adds flavor)
Coconut oil for frying
1/2 cup powdered sugar, for garnish
For the filling
3-4 apples, peeled and chopped and sliced thinly (preferably Granny Smith but any will do)
1 tsp of cinnamon
Add everything except oil and filling ingredients to a high speed blender and process to a smooth consistency. Set aside while you get a plate with about a dozen or so sheets of parchment paper on a different plate. Take the plate near a heavy skillet and put a sheet down.
Now heat up a heavy pan on medium heat. Add a few drops of water to the pan. It should sizzle. Now add your oil. Pour your batter into the pan, one at a time, one by 1/3 cup for large blintzes or 1/4 for cute mini blintzes. Tilt the pan in a circular motion until the batter forms a circular shape in the pan. Cook for about a minute or until it begins to brown on each side before transferring to the plate and then layering another sheet of parchment on top of the blintz. The purpose of this is to absorb the oil before you add more batter to the pan. Repeat this process until you used up the batter.
Turn off the heat when done and work with the filling. This will allow your blintzes to begin to cool.
Working with the apples, add them to a bowl with the cinnamon. Mix well and spoon filling into the blintz. Put 3 tbsp of your filling on the lower half of your blintz and roll up tightly. To reheat the blintzes for serving, you can fry them in oil for about a minute on each side for a crispy texture or you can reheat them in the microwave for about a minute for a softer texture.
After reheating the blintzes, sprinkle with powdered sugar. Optional sides to serve this with is vanilla yogurt, plain yogurt, or additional sliced apples.
How do you enjoy blintzes?