I had a bunch of random little pieces of fruit lying around this week and I knew I needed to do something more with them than just chop them and toss them into my yogurt in the mornings. I had one banana, some leftover pineapple, half a mango…. it was a great little mix of tropical style fruit, and with the visions of sweet crepes dancing in my head, I figured it would be fun to make some yummy fruit crepes. But I wanted something more than just fruit in my crepes, especially since I was going outside of my usual crepe-fruit comfort zone (cinnamon apples or fresh strawberries, both absolutely incredible, but I wanted something different). In my head I visualized something custardy or creamy, but I wasn’t sure that I wanted to go to all the trouble of making a full custard from scratch.
Then it hit me: zabaglione would be perfect for these crepes! It’s a very light Italian custard that does require a little effort, but not as much as a regular baked custard would. Since its consistency is a bit like pudding (though mine came out a little more runny than I would have liked… still pretty tasty, though!), it seemed like it would be just right to add to my fruit before assembling my crepe.
Zabaglione is cooked bain-marie style, which is basically a double-boiler technique. If you’ve never tried this method of cooking, no worries! It’s not hard at all. Don’t have a double boiler? Use a metal or glass bowl in a pot of barely simmering water. You will get the same result. Just be sure not to add too much water, since some of it will spill over while you’re whisking up the zabaglione (I speak from experience, hahaha). The crepe recipe I used for my Herbed Chicken Crepes with Fresh Rosemary Cream Sauce is the same I used for this meal, so you can see that it’s a very good, basic recipe to keep on hand for sweet & savory treats.
The beauty of these crepes is that they can be served for breakfast or dessert. Though this recipe features more tropical style fruits (some papaya would have been lovely in these, too, had I had it), you can certainly use different types of fruits, as the zabaglione will go well with most of them. In fact, I made a separate set of crepes for my mom this morning, using fresh strawberries, as she is allergic to bananas. She loved them! So, definitely feel free to play around with these. I probably wouldn’t use the cinnamon apples with the zabaglione, but different berries, cherries, peaches, etc., would be lovely variations.
Let’s take a look at the recipe!
Tropical Fruit Crepes with Zabaglione (serves 6; total cost per crepe: ~$0.90!)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 c nonfat milk
1 T butter, melted
1 T sugar
1/2 T butter for cooking
1/2 c pineapple chunks
1/2 c mango chunks
1/2 banana, sliced
3 egg yolks
1/3 c sugar
2 T your favorite white or rose wine (if using white wine, choose a dry variety so that this isn’t too sweet)
Place the mango & pineapple chunks into a bowl, the banana slices in a separate one and set aside. Prepare the crepes by following the basic crepe instructions.
Prepare the zabaglione by vigorously whisking together the egg yolks, sugar, and wine (or mixing well with a hand mixer at medium speed) until combined well. Place the bowl over a large pot of water that is just about simmering. Do not let the water boil as you will end up overcooking the egg yolks and end up with something similar to sugary scrambled eggs. Beat the mixture well until it starts to increase in volume and becomes a creamy, custard-like consistency.
Remove the zabaglione from heat and use immediately in the crepes. Take one crepe and fill with a small amount of banana slices, followed by the pineapple and mango chunks. Drizzle about one tablespoon of zabaglione on top of the fruit, roll the crepe together, and proceed to the next one. Top with a little more zabaglione and some extra fruit for garnish, and enjoy!