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Vietnamese Shrimp and Pork Crepes

July 21, 2008

I attempted this recipe Sunday night and while it was very, very tasty, my crepes turned out very, very unattractive. I made 9 crepes in all and the last one finally turned out fairly decent looking. I will definitely try this again and I’ve altered the recipe below so you can start out with crepe batter that will produce nice thin, crispy crepes. I combined and altered some filling recipes I found, and you can do the same. This recipe will make 8 big crepes or 10 smaller crepes. It’s a generous meal for 4 (and the leftovers were good today).

I served these as-is with a little sauteed spinach. However, next time I’ll try the Vietnamese way and wrap the crepes in leaf lettuce, add more fresh herbs and dip in Nuac Cham (recipe: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/NUOC-CHAM-DIPPING-SAUCE-235034)

Crepe Batter

2 c rice flour

1 t salt

1 t sugar

1/2 t turmeric

2 c coconut milk, shaken (from 1-14 oz can)

1/2 – 1 c water (The amount depends on the rice flour. You want the batter to be really thin like crepe batter, or about the consistency of melted ice cream)

Canola or vegetable oil for cooking crepes

Filling

1 lb (41-50 count) peeled medium shrimp

1/2 lb ground pork

4 T fish sauce

2 t sugar

1-2 T vegetable or canola oil

2 T chopped garlic

1 stalk chopped lemongrass (I forgot to buy this, so I didn’t use it. To prepare lemongrass, simply remove the tough outer stalks and chop the tender, pale white center. )

pinch red pepper flakes

black pepper to taste

1 box sliced button mushrooms

2 big handfuls fresh bean sprouts

2 T each chopped fresh mint and chopped cilantro

Directions

Mix all ingredients for crepe batter and let sit about 30 minutes, or up to a few days. Peel shrimp and put shrimp and pork in bowl with the fish sauce and sugar. Do not mix shrimp and pork together- just put the chunk of pork in the bowl with the marinade and shrimp next to it and keep the pork intact so you can cook it separately. Let sit for 30 minutes while you prepare the rest of the filling ingredients.

Heat oil in a wok and add garlic. Cook for about a minute until it starts to smell. Add red pepper flakes and black pepper and stir briefly, then add mushrooms. Stir fry mushrooms until they are beginning to cook down. Add pork and cook for about 2-3 minutes until it is half cooked and half pink. Add shrimp and rest of marinade and cook until shrimp are just almost cooked through (about 3 minutes), then add bean sprouts and cook about a minute more until the shrimp are just cooked through. Remove from heat and add mint and cilantro and stir to incorporate. Set aside.

In a crepe pan or non-stick skillet, heat 1 t oil over medium high heat until hot. Add 1/2 c of the crepe batter and swirl to coat the pan (I also tried cooking these in a wok, but the thinness of the wok was too hot and made the crepes stick. I preferred the non-stick pan). Put about 1/2 cup of the filling along the center line of the crepe (like you were making a taco) and cover the pan for 2-3 minutes. Adjust the heat if needed. Uncover pan and begin to loosen the edges of the crepe. Continue cooking until the edges and bottom of the crepe brown. You want a thin crepe that’s nice and brown and crispy. Fold over crepe like and omelette and remove from pan. Repeat with the rest of the ingredients.

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