Recipe: Welsh blintzes
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I've given this traditional Jewish sweet pancake a savoury and modern Welsh twist by using leeks and Y Fenni cheese. The asparagus adds a seasonal touch. I made them for the Hairy Bikers when they filmed in my home. If you can't find Y Fenni cheese, add a teaspoon of mustard for a piquant flavour. Two blintzes on the plate served rolled are said to represent the giving of the tablets of the law.
For the pancakes:
● 400g flour
● Pinch salt
● 800ml whole milk
● 4 free-range organic eggs
● 100g melted butter
● 50g olive oil
● Oil for frying
For the filling:
● 250g fresh leeks finely chopped
● 250g fresh asparagus
● 1 tbsp butter, 1 tbsp olive oil
For the cheese sauce:
● 50g butter, 50g flour
● 600 ml warm milk
● 150g Y Fenni cheese, grated
● Sweat the leeks gently with the butter and oil. Remove the woody ends from asparagus. Poach for 3-4 minutes in a little salted water. Drain. Chop into 5cm lengths. Add asparagus to the sautéed leeks.
● Whisk the flour, salt, milk and eggs. Add the oil and melted butter. Pour into a jug and leave to stand in the fridge
● Make the cheese sauce: melt the butter over a low/medium heat. Take off the heat, stir in the flour. Cook for a minute then take off heat. Whisk in the milk gradually then return to the heat and cook for 5–10 minutes whisking until it thickens. Take off the heat then stir in the cheese.
● For the blintzes: heat a little oil in a non-stick pan over a medium high heat. Coat evenly. Pour in a ladleful of batter and swirl to coat the pan. Cook for a minute or two until it has released itself then flip and cook a minute more. Repeat until the mixture is used up - it should make 12 small or 6 large pancakes. Stack the pancakes between sheets of greaseproof paper so they don't stick.
● Fill pancakes with leek/asparagus mixture and 1 -2 tbsp of cheese sauce. Roll up and arrange in rows in an oven-proof dish. Coat with remaining cheese sauce and bake at 180˚C until golden.
Recipe taken from 'The Hairy Bikers: Mum Still Knows Best', published by Weidenfeld and Nicholson at £20. www.ruthjoseph.co.uk