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Help with convex crepe pan


gingerpeach
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I found a crepe pan very similar to the one in the photo at a thrift store recently. From online research I can tell that I'm supposed to dip the hot pan in the batter before returning to the stove. However, this only works for the first crepe; successive ones will slide right off back into the bowl before I can turn the pan right side up, leaving a half-cooked glop of mixed into the batter. Can anyone help? Thanks in advance!

crepe pan.jpg

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Back in the heyday of Magic Pan creperies, many, many crepes were made this way. A kit, containing a pan with a convex bottom and a slightly larger pan into which the batter was poured, was sold for home use. I've used this system quite a bit (in recent years I've moved on to squarish crepes made on a conventional griddle or electric griddle, though) and it works quite well. The pan is preheated, dipped, inverted, put over the burner (gas or electric) and when the crepe is done, the pan is again inverted and the crepe peels off (maybe with a little help). For second and succeeding crepes, the same system is used (after wiping off the cooking surface of the pan if there were any bits stuck to it). As long as the pan is preheated each time to the same temperature, and its surface is in the same condition (neither more less oily than for the first crepe), it should pick up the batter in the same way for the second crepe.

The two factors that occur to me that could affect the way it works on the second crepe are pan temperature and oiliness. The temperature of the pan needs to be about the same each time when dipping; it probably is close to the right temperature when the previous crepe is done, but might need to spend a few seconds over the burner before dipping for the next one. And the pan may need to be wiped off (if the previous crepe has left an oily residue) or reoiled (if the previous crepe has left it drier).

Magic Pan's system used multiple pans (9, according to comments on the blog entry mentioned below) that were placed on a rotating carousel over a bunch of gas burners. As the pans rode around the circle, they were kept at something like a uniform temperature (I think-- maybe it was hotter at first or toward the end). In use, when a pan with a crepe on it came around, it was inverted to remove the crepe, wiped off (with an oily cloth, according to the blog), dipped in the batter, and placed back on the carousel where in once around the crepe was baked.

The Professor's Notes blog has a little more detail on the system, and there is supposedly a picture of it on a Facebook wall.

The only problem I had with the single pan system was that one ends up wasting enough batter for one or two crepes.

Dick in Northbrook, IL

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