The iconic crêpes Suzette are often served flambéed. The original recipe, as invented by Escoffier, is actually with orange-flavored butter.
The recipe I’m sharing with you here is the authentic traditional recipe, done according to the principles of the one invented by Chef Auguste Escoffier for Prince of Wales, future King Edward VII, and the charming lady Suzette. Therefore, the sauce with Grand Marnier or other orange or tangerine alcohol is not flambéed. You’ll find the alcohol in the batter and a few drops are poured on the crêpes.
Even the French mostly think the authentic recipe of crêpes Suzette is flambéed. This adaptation is widely spread nowadays, not the original and proper one. Therefore, in France, we prepare both this proper one and the flambéed one. This is the reason why I share both recipes on the blog; you can find the flambéed recipe here. A must-try, it’s absolutely decadent!
Information on the traditional recipe
It’s not always easy to find the real initial recipe when it comes to traditional dishes. For crêpes Suzette, The Larousse Gastronomique in its 1938 edition, explains the proportions of butter, sugar, and alcohol, and especially how to do it. Once the crêpes are filled, they must be folded in four and served hot.
First the batter. I give many tips and tricks to master French crêpes in this article along with the classic batter recipe. Use any crêpe batter you are used to, your’s or mine below. Don’t forget to add a bit of Cointreau, Grand Marnier, or Curaçao (or any orange alcohol you like) in the batter. Initially, Escoffier used Curacao.
Crêpes are topped with candied orange zest and an orange or tangerine butter (but the tangerines tend to be more and more difficult to find in France). Room temperature butter is combined with orange zest and a bit of orange juice, then set in the refrigerator. I give many tips and tricks to master French crêpes in this article along with my ultimate crêpe batter recipe.
The method for each crepe is to pour the batter in a hot greased with butter non-stick pan. Cook for 1 or 2 minutes on one side, then flip. Cook another minute on the second side. Then spread orange butter and candied zests on half of the crêpe. Fold in in two the fold again in two. On this quarter, spread orange butter and orange zest again. Either store in a warm oven before serving or wait until butter has melted and serve.
To serve crêpes Suzette warm with this absolutely delicious melting orange butter, the best thing to do is to prepare crepes one after the other and store them in a warm oven so that they will stay warm, butter melting and without drying.
Drizzle with a bit of alcohol when serving.
Learn the story of crêpes Suzette
If you’re interested in learning the story behind this dish, where the recipe comes from, why it was invented by Escoffier in honor of Suzette, who was this Lady Suzette dining with Prince of Wales…. Then head to this article where I explain the story and origin of crêpes Suzette. Funnily it’s on the flambéed recipe, which is the first I shared here on the blog.
For French crêpe lovers
If you are a French crêpe lover then you are in the right place. I very often offer crêpes to my daughters; it’s among their breakfast and goûter afternoon snack’s favorites. I already talked to you about the basic crêpe recipe with tips and tricks, the flambéed crêpe Suzette recipe. My personal favorite crêpe topping is with salted butter, lemon juice, and brown sugar. This one with pears and caramelized sauce is not bad too!
And if you’re looking for a crêpe batter that changes from the classic one, I suggest replacing milk with hazelnut milk. Or using chestnut flour. You’ll find all those recipes on the blog.
Crêpes Suzette, Traditional Recipe
- 250 gr flour T45 or T55
- 50 g sugar
- 5 g salt
- 25 g butter melted
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 liter milk
- 5 cl orange or tangerine alcohol Cointreau or Grand Marnier
ORANGE BUTTER AND ZEST
- 100 g butter at room temperature
- 50 gr sugar granulated sugar or icing sugar
- 2 oranges organic
- A few drops tangerine or orange alcohol Cointreau or Grand Marnier
Prepare the crêpe batter (see detailed info here). Use a whisk or food processor.
- Combine dry ingredients (flour, sugar, and salt). Add the beaten eggs and mix.
- Melt the butter and add it while mixing.
- Finally, pour in the milk and the alcohol, little by little, while constantly mixing to avoid any lumps.
Prepare the orange butter
- Whisk together 100 gr of butter and 50 gr of sugar until you get a homogeneous cream. Very finely zest the first orange (ideally with a microplane) and add them, combine.
- Then squeeze ½ orange and add 2 tablespoons of orange juice in the butter.
- Mix well and refrigerate.
Prepare candied orange zests
- Take the zests from the second orange, ideally with a zester to make thin strips as in the photo below.
- Put them in a saucepan with cold water and bring to a boil. Drain. Weigh the quantity obtained and put it in a saucepan with the same weight of sugar and a little bit of water. Heat and let it reduce over medium heat until you get syrupy and candied zests.
Prepare crêpes Suzette
- Preheat your oven to 100°C.
- Cook the crêpes and reserve them in the oven as follows
- Grease your hot pan with butter, cook crêpe for 1 to 2 minutes on the first side, then flip it over and cook for 1 or 2 more minutes.
- When the 2nd side is cooked, garnish the crepe by spreading a knob of orange-flavored butter on half of the crepe. Add some candied orange zest. Fold in half, then in four, and put more orange butter and some zest on top.
- Place the crepe in an ovenproof dish in the oven at 100°C. Repeat this for each crepe and add them one after the other in the dish in the oven.
- When all the crepes are ready, and the butter has melted, serve, possibly drizzling a few drops of orange or tangerine alcohol on top.