• Crêpe batter
  • 310 ml (1 1/4 cups) milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 310 ml (1 1/4 cups) flower
  • 2 ml (1/2 c. tsp.) salt
  • 37 ml (2 1/2 tbsp.) melted butter
  • 30 ml (2 tbsp.) finely grated lemon peel
  • White wine sauce
  • 60 ml (1/4 cup) butter
  • 60 ml (1/4 cup) flower
  • 80 ml (1/3 cup) white wine
  • 330 ml (1 1/3 cups) milk
  • 80 ml (1/3 cup) 10% cream
  • 80 ml (1/3 cup) grated gruyere cheese
  • 10 ml (2 tsp.) lemon juice
  • 1 pinch freshly ground nutmeg
  • 36 slender asparagus stalks
  • 500 gr (1 lb.) smoked salmon, thinly sliced
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  • Preparation of the crêpe batter:
  • Using a mixer or a food processor, mix the milk, eggs, flour, salt and butter until smooth and homogeneous. Pour into a large bowl, add the grated lemon peel and stir. Cover and refrigerate for about 1 hour. (Crêpes can be prepared in advance, covered and kept in the refrigerator until the following day.) Heat a 15 cm (6 in.) diameter pan to medium high and coat very lightly with oil. Using a ladle, pour about 30 ml (2 tbsp.) of batter into the pan and cook for about 30 seconds or until bubbles from on the surface of the crêpe. Turn the crêpe using a spatula and cook for another 30 seconds or until it is golden brown. Remove the crêpe from the pan and keep it hot. Cook the rest of the crêpes in the same way. (You can prepare the crêpes in advance and stack them on a plate, separating each one with a piece of waxed paper. They can be kept in this way for 2 days in the refrigerator)
  • In a medium casserole, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the flour and mix. Cook, while stirring, for about 1 minute. Add the white wine and mix well using a whisk. Add the milk and cream and continue cooking, stirring continuously with the whisk, for about 5 minutes or until the sauce thickens. Remove the casserole from the heat and add the gruyere, lemon juice and nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper (add salt sparingly as smoked salmon is very salty.) Mix with a wooden spoon until the cheese is melted and the sauce is homogeneous. Keep the sauce hot. (the sauce can be prepared in advance, allowed it to cool and covered. It can be kept in the refrigerator until the next day. Reheat gently in a double boiler before starting to assemble the crêpes.
  • Remove the hard part of the asparagus which extends about 5 cm from its base. Bend the stalk gently in that area. Peel each stalk with a peeler, working from the tip towards the base. Wash them and drain on paper towels. Put the asparagus in a steamer basket and place in a casserole containing salted boiling water. Do not let the asparagus come in contact with the water. Cover and cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until the asparagus are tender but still crisp. Rinse under cold water. Drain and put aside. (The asparagus can be prepared in advance, allowed to cool, placed in an airtight container and kept in the refrigerator until the next day.)
  • Spread half of the white wine sauce in a buttered 23 cm x 33 cm (9 in x 13 in) oven dish. On the light colored side of the crêpe, place about two slices of smoked salmon letting them exceed the crêpe slightly. Add 3 of the cooked asparagus and roll tightly. Repeat for the remainder of the crêpe, salmon and asparagus. Place the stuffed crêpe side by side in the oven dish and spread the remainder of sauce over the center of the crêpes. Place under the oven's broiling element for 1 to 2 minutes or until the sauce is lightly browned.
  • Serve immediately.

Chef's notes