Blini Crepe Pancakes

Blini can be made anytime, for any occasion, and are a time-honoured treat to share.

In olden times, these were served as light-fare, to celebrate either birth or death.

Blini Crepes are traditionally enjoyed throughout Maslenitsa-Cheesefare Week, up to and including Forgiveness Sunday… the day before Great Lent begins. (This uses up any remaining dairy products before the 40 day Vegan Fast.)

Two blini recipes are included here. One uses no yeast, and the other does. They’re both excellent, but my hands-down favourite is the no yeast recipe, generously shared by a dear friend, Evguenia, which was her grandmother’s recipe. There are also instructions for delicious savory and/or sweet fillings to stuff the blini with, if desired.

(Please also try and enjoy this separate bonus link to a delicious Vegan Blini Recipe)

No Yeast Blini
Grandmother Maria’s Blini (shared by Evguenia)                                     
Small Batch 15 – 20 Blini (Serves 4)

Recipe can be easily doubled/tripled/quadrupled/quintupled

  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups total, whole milk
  • 25 grams butter (Just under 2 Tbsp.)
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp salt  (to taste)
  • 1 tsp sugar (to taste)
  • 1 Tbsp oil (light tasting)
  • In a large bowl, whisk all the eggs into half of the milk. Set aside.                       
  • In a saucepan, separately warm the other half of the milk, and let the butter melt in it. 
  • Into the large bowl, sift flour, sugar and salt together, and gradually add to the whisked egg/milk mixture, beating all until smooth. 
  • Now add the saucepan combo melted butter and warm (not scalding) milk, into the large bowl. Stir in 1 Tbsp. oil. 
  • Mix well… it will be a thin, pourable batter. 
  • Let stand and keep in a warm place for 30 – 40 minutes to thicken slightly.
  • With a tiny bit of butter, coat frying pan and then wipe clean.  
  • While swirling pan, pour enough batter to lightly coat the bottom
  • Cook over med/high heat, adjusting if necessary and wiping with more butter between blini, if needed. Do not burn the butter.
  • When the surface of the blini looks dry, flip and cook for another minute or so.
  • NOTE – If blini break when flipping, there aren’t enough eggs.  You can add a bit of beaten egg at this point (if necessary), back into the big bowl of batter. 
  • Stack blini on top of each other when cooled and finished.  Flip over to the “pretty” side before filling.

Serve topped with fresh fruit, whipped cream, maple syrup… Or, if feeling adventurous, cream cheese, lox, pickled herring, chopped hard boiled eggs with minced onion. Stuff and roll them with savories or sweets. To fill, add a couple Tablespoons of filling (listed below) to one end of blini and roll up like a burrito, folding in sides about ½ way up.

Small Batch Fillings
Please adjust filling quantities as needed, for amount of blini
Potato/Mushroom/Onion Filling
  • 2 small peeled potatoes – boiled and mashed with 2 tsp. of butter.
  • 1 cup brown mushrooms, chopped well.
  • 1/2 a large yellow onion, minced.
  • 1 Tbsp. oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Saute mushrooms until most of the moisture is gone.
  • Add chopped onion and oil and saute until onion is soft.
  • Mix together with mashed potatoes and add salt to taste
Egg/Scallion/Rice Filling
  • 1 cup of cooked and cooled rice
  • 1 cup chopped scallions, including the stalks, and sautéed until soft
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, chopped
  • Salt to taste
  • Combine
Cream Cheese Filling
  • 1.5 bricks (2 x 250 gr) plain cream cheese (should make up 1.5 cups)
  • Approximately ½ cup icing sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • Jam or Preserves
  • Whip together cream cheese and icing sugar until light and fluffy
  • Divide cheese mixture in half and separate
  • First half:  Add, by tablespoonful, favourite jam or preserves, up to 1 cup to acquire the consistency you desire. Should be spreadable.  
  • Whip until light and fluffy
Cream Cheese & Grand Marnier Filling
  • 1.5 bricks (2 x 250 gr) plain cream cheese (should make up 1.5 cups)
  • Approximately  ½ cup icing sugar
  • 1 Tbsp + (or to taste) Grand Marnier liqueur
  • Grated orange rind, to taste
  • Whip together cream cheese and icing sugar until light and fluffy
  • Combine 
Yeast Blini
  • 2 Tbsp. dry yeast (or instant yeast)
  • 4 cups warm milk
  • 1 Tbsp. melted butter
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 & 1/2 cups all purpose all purpose flour
  • (or a GF option using Robin Hood Gluten Free flour, or *LIGHT* Buckwheat flour, or a combo of both GF blends)
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup light cream
  • In a deep mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in a little warm milk. Let sit for 5 minutes.(If using instant yeast, don’t bother dissolving)
  • Add butter, sugar, egg yolks, cream and flour. Whisk until just smooth.
  • In another bowl, whip the egg whites until stiff.
  • Fold egg whites gently into the other mixture.
  • Cover bowl, set in a warm place for half an hour.
  • Lightly butter a frying pan and wipe pan.
  • Pour in a bit of batter while swirling the pan, adding only enough batter to lightly coat bottom of buttered frying pan. Do not burn butter.
  • Fry over medium-high heat, adjusting if necessary (and re-buttering pan as needed)
  • Brown blini lightly on both sides. 
  • When the surface of the blini looks dry, flip and cook for another minute or so.
  • Stack blini on top of each other when finished. 
  • Flip over to the “pretty” side if filling them later.

 Serves 6

Vegan Blini Recipe

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