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National Crêpes Suzette Day

National Crêpes Suzette Day

Crêpes Suzette

May 6th is National Crêpes Suzette Day, which celebrates this classic dessert of crêpes and a luxurious sauce made with sugar, butter, fresh orange juice, orange zest, and Grand Marnier. Yup, this is a boozy one, folks!

In honor of today’s food holiday, I made a modified version of Crêpes Suzette. I didn’t have Grand Marnier, but I did have some brandy, which I used for the orange butter sauce. And while I didn’t flambé these crêpes (like a lot of chefs do, and which is the way this dish is usually served), the next time I make them, I’ll be sure to do it with more flair! But you really don’t need to flambé because pouring the sweet, buttery, orange sauce all over the warm crêpes is definitely good enough!

How to Make Crêpes Suzette

This isn’t a difficult recipe to make. It’s simply your basic crêpes (here’s a great recipe to follow: https://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/basic-crepes) lathered with the rich Suzette sauce (https://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/crepes-suzette).

For me, making the Crêpes Suzette this morning came together pretty easily because I already had some crêpes ready. Whenever I make crêpes, I make a big batch of them; and you can store cooked, unfilled crêpes in the freezer. Whenever you’re ready to fill and eat a crêpe, all you have to do is pull one out of the freezer and pop it in the microwave to reheat them. So simple! This is a great way to make sure you can always satisfy that Nutella crêpe craving. A craving that I get often.

If you’d like to learn more about how you can make crêpes ahead of time and store them, here’s a fantastic link with some more details: http://chezbonnefemme.com/how-to-freeze-crepes-and-why-you-should.

The frozen crêpes should last for a few months, but we usually eat ours within a month of freezing. 😉

The Fascinating History of Crêpes Suzette

As I was researching recipes for Crêpes Suzette, I learned that this dish has a very interesting origin story! First, it was created by mistake. Second, it’s not a French recipe, but Monegasque. And third, we may not really know who Suzette is. How mysterious!

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So about that mistake…

The popular story goes that in Monaco (not in France) in 1895, a young waiter named Henri Charpentier was preparing a dessert of crêpes for the Prince of Wales (who would later become King Edward VII of England). The crêpes were already made and sitting in a chaffing dish with the orange butter sauce and a mix of liquors. However, the alcohol accidentally caught fire and the inadvertently flambéed crêpes heightened the flavor of the sauce! At first Henri was scared that he had burned the dessert and was afraid to serve the Prince; but after tasting the crêpes post-flambé, he realized that they were delicious, and served them anyway. And the Prince loved it!

Who the heck is Suzette?

When the Prince asked Henri about the name of the dish, Henri called it “Crêpes Princesse.” But apparently the Prince decided that it should be named after a young woman who was dining with his party, named Suzette. Who’s Suzette? Well, there are a bunch of guesses as to who the real suzette was… Some say she was the daughter of one of the Prince’s guests. Some say she was one of the Prince’s paramours. Another story claims that the dish is named after a character in a play that was running at the time. In that play, Suzette is a maid who serves pancakes. (I can see the connection.) And another theory is that the dessert was named after an actual Princess—Princess Suzette de Carignan—and was actually invented by a totally different chef who worked for King Louis XV.

Will we ever know the truth about the origin of Crêpes Suzette? Who knows. But regardless of how this was invented, I’m thankful that we have a day to celebrate it!

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