My Aunt Sandy’s blintzes were to die for. Here’s my first attempt at recreating them.
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Some recipes, I get from my mom, because she remembers how to make them. Then I taste them and tweak them until they taste how I remember them. Sometimes, though, Mom Food lives only in one’s memories.
Such is the case with my Aunt Sandy’s blintzes.
Aunt Sandy, after whom I was named (did you know my given name is Sandra?) is my mother’s older sister, and her lifelong best friend. They light up when they see each other, and besides me and James, I’ve never known two people to be so totally in synch.
One food I really remember enjoying of my Aunt Sandy’s, which my mother didn’t make, is her blintzes, so a week ago, I gave her a call and asked her how to make them.
It’s been so long, she doesn’t remember.
Oh, well, I’ll do the best recreation job I can, says I, and so I went about figuring it out.
Then I cobbled together a few internet recipes for the ricotta filling. I used whole-milk ricotta, because I’m not even sure they made the low-fat stuff when I was little, and besides, hello? Whole. Milk.
I filled them and fried them up and baked them for ten minutes.
Lastly, I was going to top it with blueberry sauce and sour cream, as my aunt did, if I remember right, but: 1) I cooked the blueberry sauce and flaked, leaving it out overnight, so it went into the compost; and 2) I forgot to buy sour cream. So the blintzes got topped with macerated strawberries and a little bit of powdered sugar, instead.
And very much like the ones I remember. I call this a success.
Filling for approximately 18 blintzes:
1 pound whole-milk ricotta (may use low-fat or non-fat if you like)
4 ounces cream cheese
3-4 tablespoons powdered sugar
fruit topping and/or sour cream to top (I sliced two pints of strawberries and mixed them with 1/4 cup sugar, then let them macerate in the fridge overnight)
Mix all filling ingredients together in food processor or blender until very smooth. Refrigerate for an hour or so to firm up the filling. Then fill each crepe with a heap (3 tablespoons? less?) of filling, and roll them up like little burritos, seam side down.
Preheat oven to 400F.
Fry a few blintzes at a time in a lightly buttered pan, two minutes on each side or so. Carefully, transfer them to an oven-proof dish (I used a Silpat-lined baking sheet) and bake for 10 minutes to firm up the filling. Serve immediately, topped with whatever you want. I used the macerated strawberries and a shake of powdered sugar.
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I run The Mom Food Project, which was born out of love for my mom and a desire to preserve the recipes of my childhood, which didn't actually exist in written form until I quizzed my mom and wrote the recipes down.
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