These chestnut crepes or pancakes are easy to make, naturally gluten-free and have a delicious, gently sweet nutty flavor. The sweet and creamy honey mascarpone pairs perfectly to make a tasty snack, breakfast or even dessert.
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You may remember that I used chestnut flour in my mince pies before Christmas. Well, every now and then I keep trying to think of things that the chestnut flour would be good in but haven't done all that well since, maybe because chestnuts just don't quite feel seasonal at the moment.
However, I did come across chestnut pancakes which looked nice and easy so it seemed silly not to give them a try, particularly since we do like pancakes in our house. I put my own twist on the typical filling and the result was a really tasty dish that would be a great dessert, that you could also just about justify for breakfast.
There is a traditional Italian type of pancake or flatbread made just with chestnut flour and water called necci. I debated sharing those (and may well at some point) but I also like this version with added egg.
I think it's worthwhile both for the protein and to help the texture and taste. The egg helps hold them be a bit firmer and less likely to crack.
Since these are best thin, you do have to do your slight swirly action to move the batter around the skillet/frying pan (since I'm assuming, like me, you may not have a proper crepe-making set up at home). It's a pretty runny mixture so easy enough to get it to spread.
These pancakes are naturally gluten-free and so make an easy alternative to regular crepes if that's something you are looking for.
Many recipes I saw served chestnut pancakes with an orange cream, and I could see the fresh creaminess was a good match, but I decided to go for something slightly different with this honey mascarpone. You can make it both with a touch of rosewater or without, either way is delicious.
In fact it's so good, I think I might have to find some other uses for the filling. I think it would be pretty good with a nutty or chocolate cake for example. If you experiment then let me know what you come up with!
Rosewater is such an incredible flavor that I keep meaning to use a bit more and it works really well here with the nuttiness in these pancakes. But it's one you need to take care not to overdo it (it can be strong), and not to everyone's taste. So feel free to skip.
These chestnut crepes are easy to make, with a lovely nutty flavor. The honey mascarpone may seem a little decadent but it goes so well, you really don't want to miss it. Whether you are specifically looking for gluten free pancakes or not, these are definitely worth a try.
Try these other twists on pancakes:
- Almond flour pancakes with apples (also gluten free)
- Sourdough pancakes
- Individual Dutch baby pancakes with roasted fruit
- Kaiserschmarrn (Austrian torn pancakes)
- Beet and pear pancakes
- Plus get more breakfast and brunch recipes in the archives.
Chestnut crepes with honey mascarpone (GF)
- ½ cup chestnut flour 45g
- 1 egg
- ⅓ cup water 80ml
- 3 tbsp mascarpone
- ½ tsp honey
- ½ tsp rosewater (optional)
- Whisk together the chestnut flour, egg and water. Allow the mixture to sit for 10-15minutes while you make the filling.
- Mix together the mascarpone and honey (and rosewater if using) in a small bowl and set aside.
- Melt a small knob of butter (no more than ¼tbsp) or oil in a small skillet/frying pan over a medium heat and once the pan is fairly hot, pour a little of the pancake mixture into the pan and swirl around to form a thin layer. If you end up with gaps, fill with a little extra batter immediately while mixture still semi-liquid so it joins.
- Cook for a couple minutes on each side - you should see it is ready on the first side as it starts to curl on the edges.
- Once they are cooked, set aside and cover with a clean dishtowel to keep warm while you cook the rest.
- Serve with a spoonful of the mascarpone mixture spread inside each crepe - I suggest rolling them up.