Mark Militello's Semolina Crepes Recipe
Mark's Semolina Crepes Stuffed With Homemade Ricotta & Prosciutto
For the Ricotta (makes 2 cups)
6 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
Combine milk and cream in a nonreactive sauce pan and bring to a boil. Once mixture boils, reduce heat and gently stir in lemon juice with a wooden spoon. Watch for the milk curd to separate from the whey, being careful not to overstir. Remove from heat and let rest for 3 minutes.
Pour mixture through a fine mesh strainer. The whey will drain, and the curd will remain. Let rest in strainer for about 5 minutes. Pour into a stainless bowl. A small amount of water should remain. Refrigerate until cheese sets or becomes firm. Mixture will tighten up once it cools.
For the tomato sauce (makes 8 cups):
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
10 cloves of garlic smashed
3/4 cup diced onion
1 can (1lb., 12 oz.) good quality San Marzano peeled tomatoes
10 fresh Roma tomatoes, cored and halved (about 1 1/2)
2 cups water
salt and pepper to taste
Pour olive oil into a nonreactive sauce pan over high heat. Add garlic and stir until lightly toasted. Add onions and reduce heat until translucent but not brown. Add tomatoes and water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to barely a simmer and season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 1 1/4 hour. Remove from heat and place through a medium food mill; adjust seasoning. Reserve for service.
For the crepe batter (makes 20 crepes):
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup Semolina flour
4 whole eggs
1 1/2 cup milk
2 oz. clarified butter
2 oz. beer
pinch of salt
In a stainless mixing bowl, place flour and Semolina. Make a well by pushing flour to the outside of the bowl. Add eggs, milk, beer and a pinch of salt in the middle. With a whisk, slowly pull the flours into the liquid well. By doing this slowly, it will help the dry mixture incorporate into the liquid without creating lumps. Continue until the mix is smooth and incorporated. Take care not to overmix. If lumps occur, mixture can be passed through a strainer. Cover and reserve for 45 minutes at room temperature before making crepes.
Heat an 8-inch nonstick pan over medium-high heat. Lightly coat bottom with butter, being careful not to use too much. Once pan is hot, pour a small amount of batter into the center of the pan. Tip pan back and forth in a swirling motion until batter has evenly coated the pan. Cook until edges are golden brown and then with a rubber spatula, flip crepe onto the other side. Cook until light brown. Remove from pan to cool. Continue process until batter is finished. Crepes can be made ahead of time and reserved with wax paper or parchment in between, covered in the refrigerator, or left at room temperature to stuff.
For the filling:
2 cups ricotta
5 oz. spinach (about 1/2 cup, drained and finely chopped)
1/2 cup grated mozzarella
2 egg yolks
pinch of nutmeg
salt and pepper to taste
Blanch spinach in boiling water until wilted. Drain and place spinach in a cold water bath to stop cooking. Drain again and squeeze as much moisture from spinach as possible. Finely chop and in a bowl add to ricotta and mozzarella. Stir in egg yolks and nutmeg and adjust salt and pepper. Cover and place in refrigerator until ready to stuff the crepes.
2 cups ricotta filling
10 very think slices of prosciutto
8 cups tomato sauce
1/8 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
Take 5 crepes at a time and lay flat on a work station. Take prosciutto and cut in half across the width. Place prosciutto on top of crepe and take about 1 1/2 tsp of filling and place in bottom right-hand corner of crepe. Fold crepe in half and then in half again. In a casserole dish, liberally ladle sauce to cover the bottom. Place stuffed crepes in the dish and cover again with sauce. Bake in a preheated 325-degree oven for 35 minutes. To serve, place crepes in the middle of the plate and ladle with fresh sauce. Serve with grated cheese.