Sunday, July 01, 2007

crêpes susannah

Even though I am entering it on the very last day possible, I have been thinking long and hard about my creation for Urban Vegan's "Vegans Gone Wild" contest, for which she asked us to create a "most decadent, luscious, exotically indulgent original vegan dessert recipe." For some reason, the word decadent instantly called up "fire!" in my mind. After all, what can be more decadent and sinful than a sweet, rich dessert, lit up into flames?

So I decided to take two famously flammable desserts, cr
êpes Suzette (crêpes with butter and a flambéed orange liqueur sauce) and bananas Foster (bananas with a rum-caramel sauce, again flambéed), veganize them, and then kick them up a notch by infusing my dessert with a tropical Latin American flair (inspired by my recent jaunt to Puerto Rico, of course). The result? What I call "crêpes Susannah" - buttery rich coconut crêpes filled with a banana-mango-caramel mixture with a hint of rum, topped with caramel, vanilla drizzle, and powdered sugar. It's a tropical vacation on a plate! Here is a step-by-step guide, with recipe and photos.

Bazu's sinfully rich vegan cr

  • 1/2 cup coconut milk (full fat, of course!)
  • 1/4 cup soymilk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup melted Earth Balance margarine
  • tiny pinch of salt
  • 3 TB brown sugar
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1-2 TB light or dark rum
  • more water, as needed

Blend all of the above ingredients in a blender until well-mixed. Stop and scrape the sides a couple of times to incorporate all the ingredients if necessary. Cover and refrigerate (in the blender canister) for at least 2 hours.

After the batter has chilled in the refrigerator for at least two hours, take it out and give it another whir in the blender to re-blend it. At this point, you may need to add a little bit of water to the batter to thin it out a little. The texture you want is thinner than a pancake batter, but not too runny.

To cook the cr
êpes, heat a 7-8 inch pan over medium-high heat and spray with canola oil. This process is a bit like making pancakes, you'll have to adjust the temperature constantly, and your first crêpe might be sacrificed to the gods, but this is a very forgiving batter and you will get going fast!

Pour the batter, about 1/4 - 1/3 cup at a time and quickly shake the pan to spread the it around the entire bottom of the pan, making sure the crepe is thin and even. Wait until it has slightly browned on the edges, about 1-2 minutes, and flip to the other side. Daiku and I found this to be a two-person job: I would pick up the cr
êpe by the edge using tongs, and he would flip them over with his hands. After flipping to the second side, it only takes a few seconds until the crêpes are done. Flip them onto a flat surface (we spread a kitchen towel over our oven rack) and allow them to cool.

makes 6-8 7"-8" cr

While the crepes are cooling, make your

Banana-Mango Foster filling

  • 2 TB Earth Balance margarine
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • up to 1/4 cup soy cream
  • 2 small ripe bananas, cut into thick slices
  • 1 small or 1/2 large mango, diced
  • 1/4 cup dark rum

melt Earth Balance in a heavy-bottom pan over medium heat. Add sugar and cinnamon, and stir until sugar melts, about 3-4 minutes.

Once sugar melts and starts bubbling, add enough soy cream to achieve a liquid caramel consistency.

Add your fruit. At this point, the cold fruit might make the caramel solidify, but don't worry- it will melt again. Stir constantly, making sure to coat the mango and banana with caramel sauce. Once the fruit has softened slightly (about 3-5 minutes, depending on their ripeness), you get to the fun part!

This part requires some caution! Carefully pour rum into the fruit and caramel mixture. Take the pan off the heat and set the rum on fire using a long torch. Return to the heat, moving the pan back and forth until the flame dies down. You might want to tip it to make sure that all the alcohol is gone.

Allow your mixture to cool slightly before assembling.

To fill, spoon some fruit mixture, without a lot of liquid, into the center of the cooled
crêpes. Roll them up, and rest them on a plate, seam side down.

Top them with reserved caramel sauce, some vanilla yogurt, and a dusting of powdered sugar. Garnish with a big sprig of mint. Enjoy this luscious, sweet, sinful, dessert while still slightly warm and be transported somewhere far away!



Tofu Mom (AKA Tofu-n-Sprouts) said...

OOOooohhhhh.... I am in heaven. OK, I don't even LIKE bananas and this looks like something I would make...

And even though I entered a "decadant dessert" too, I think this looks like something INSANELY drool-worthy!!

Celine said...

this just has to win the prize. my goodness...

laura jesser said...


SusanV said...

Decadent is right! These look incredible! But they're made of fruit, so that makes them a health food, right? So I wouldn't need to feel guilty if I made these for breakfast, would I? :)

Monika K said...

This is sure to win with the triple threat of rum, fruit and caramel...mmmm!

Mihl said...

If I had a vote, I would vote for you. What a perfectly decadent creation!
Thank you for sharing your Puerto Rico vacation with us. I enjoyed all of the pictures and stories very much.

Crystal & Ryan - Café Cyan said...

Looks awesome!! I think I'm too scared to try this - I'd probably set the house on fire.

Do you know - can you use a nonstick pan for this or would it ruin the finish?


Emmie said...

This looks so good! When will you come to Sweden and cook for me?

theONLYtania said...

Wow, I LOVE that dessert. You're a'shooin! I don't feel confident enough in my cooking skills to light my dessert on fire.. so maybe I'll skip that part!

bazu said...

Thanks for your comments, everyone! This was so fun to make, and especially to set ablaze. =)

Crystal, to answer your question, I don't believe it's a good idea to use a non-stick pan for flambeing. It would probably hurt the finish, and if your pan has teflon on it, it might give off nasty chemicals due to the high heat. We used a stainless steel pan.

textual bulldog said...

gorgeous, bazu! really amazing. you so have my vote.

Courtney said...

Amazingly impressive!!


aTxVegn said...

You are a genius! That looks so delicious and fun!

Theresa said...

Oh Susannah! Those flames! That looks so cool, and the finished product looks delish!

Emilie said...

there's absolutely nothing i can say to this that will express its awesomeness.

Melody Polakow said...

Wowza!!! Looks amazing, and I don't even like cooked bananas...

urban vegan said...

Mille mercis for entering, Bazu. You're going to start a flambe trend in the blogosphere! What flamin' fun [and decadence].

Veganista said...

Oh my. Flambe! And Mango. Banana. Looks like a dessert to die for.

Thanks for visiting the other day and your kind comments. Pretty please may I link here?

Emmy said...

All I can say is these look amazingly delicious. YUM!!!!

Vegan_Noodle said...

Oh wow, those look amazing!! I might be a little scared about the flame part, so professional chefish! Very creative and certainly looks like it would be delicious. I'll try and work up the nerve to make it!

Vicki's Vegan Vice said...

fire it up & break some of those crepes off for us over here!!! ooooh, what a HOT entry! :)

vko said...

Impressive. speechless due to all the non-stop drool factor...

Anonymous said...

I love this dessert idea. You are so creative. You could have called it Flamboyan Crepes Susannah in memory of those gorgeous trees. It's so funny how one particular tree seems to be everywhere you look in a particular area. For example, here in Nashville, there is a Bradford Pear tree (not a fruit tree) on every corner. I had never seen them prior to living here. Anyway, great entry. Your creativity really shined through here. Good luck!