My husband and I took an amazing trip to Italy a year ago where we ate and drank our way through the country. One of my favorite meals was the stuffed crepes I ordered at a small wine bar (or Enoteca) that was located next to our hotel room in Rome.
I loved it so much I went back the next day and ordered it again! Each time I go to an Italian restaurant I look for this on the menu but I am always disappointed to find it missing. Finally, I decided that I needed to recreate it myself. It wasn't identical to the Roman version but it was definitely delicious and a big hit in my household!
This dish can take some time to make so you may want to save it for the weekend. However, if you want to make it for dinner guests you can easily prepare it in advance. Just fill the crepes and keep the marinara sauce in a separate container until you are ready to bake so the crepes do not get soggy. Once the oven is preheated, ladle the sauce over, sprinkle with cheese and place in the oven.
Spinach and Ricotta Stuffed Crepes (printable recipe)
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cups milk
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cup flour
- 3 Tablespoon melted butter, plus more for cooking
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 12oz. fresh spinach
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 egg
- 15oz. package of ricotta
- 1 cup basil, chiffonade
- 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, plus extra for topping
- Salt and pepper
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup onion, finely diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 28oz. can of whole peeled tomatoes
- 8oz. can of tomato sauce
- 1 cup basil, chiffonade
- salt & pepper
Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend for 10 seconds. Scrape down the sides and pulse one more time to ensure that all the ingredients are incorporated. Place batter in refrigerator and let sit for at least 1 hour before using.
Once crepe batter has rested, heat an 8"-10" non-stick skillet on medium heat. Add a 1 teaspoon of butter to cover the bottom of the pan, then slowly pour a small amount of batter while rolling the pan so that it coats the bottom evenly.
Let the crepe cook until it holds together and begins to turn a light golden, about 1-2 minutes then flip and cook on the other side for an additional 1 minute. Place finished crepe on a plate and repeat with remaining batter until it the batter is all used up.
This will make 8-10 crepes. Also, don't worry if your first crepe does not turn out, this is typical, just throw it out and make the next the second one...it will come out great!
Crepe Filling -
In a large sauté pan, heat olive oil over medium heat and add fresh spinach with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and cook until spinach has wilted. Drain liquid from spinach, coarsely chop and add to a large bowl.
Let spinach cool slightly, then add garlic, egg, ricotta, basil, parmesan and mix together. Taste for seasoning, then add additional salt and pepper as necessary.
Marinara Sauce -
In a large sauté pan, heat olive oil on medium heat and add onions and cook until onions become translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and oregano and cook for an additional 1 minute.
Add in canned tomatoes and tomato sauce and bring up to a simmer while breaking up the whole tomatoes with a spoon. Alternatively, you could chop the tomatoes before adding them to the pan. Let sauce simmer on medium-low heat for 20-30 minutes, or until it sauce thickens slightly.
Add in basil then taste for seasoning adding salt and pepper as necessary.
Assemble Crepes -
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Butter or oil a large baking dish and ladle a thin layer of marinara sauce on the bottom. Lay crepes on a flat surface and spoon about 1/4 cup of filling into each one.
Fold in the long sides then roll up like a burrito and place in baking dish. Once baking dish is full, ladle marinara sauce on the top and sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese. Bake in oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the filling is heated through and sauce is bubbly. Serve warm.
Here is a photo of the original Crepes from Rome: