In his introduction to the Crespéou in Plenty More, Yotam Ottolenghi says

If I was going to sum up my cooking style in five words, 70’s-style-retro-picnic-bling would not be them”

Huh…Weirdly enough that’s exactly the style of cooking I aspire to. 

Still, with an introduction like that, there was no way I was not making a Crespéou!  I was already thinking about  having a month of  food I have no idea how to pronounce (Kouign Amman anyone?).  Google tells me this is Cresp-ay-oo. And also that it’s from Provence and so-called because the layers look like crepes.  Never say I don’t do the research hard yards for you…

Crespeou5So what is this unpronounceable piece of 70’s style crepe like Retro Picnic Bling?

Well, it’s layers of three differently flavoured omelettes stacked on each other and baked.  One red, one yellow, one green.  Which just goes to show the difference between those classy people of Provence and around here.  We’d be calling it something dumb arse like “Traffic Light” Special. 

Crespéou – Red Layer

Yotam suggests red peppers for this layer.   I used sun-dried-tomatoes because red peppers and I have a love-hate relationship.  Without the love.

Hmm, I have realised in looking at this picture of the red layer that I may have put in fresh coriander rather than ground.  Oops.

Crespeou Red Layer
Crespeou Red Layer

 Still, I think that is one of the benefits of a dish like this.  You can mix up the flavours. I have seen other recipes where people have used, zucchinis, mushrooms, olives, all sorts of things. It could really become a “clean-out-your-fridge” type dish. 

Crespeou Red Layer2Crespéou -Yellow Layer

The yellow layer was intriguing.  I have never used turmeric in an omelette before.  It really works!!!  If I was going to mix this layer up a bit thin crispy discs of pan sautéed potato would be great!

Crespeou Yellow LayerThe trick with this dish is to leave the top of your omelettes much more runny than you would any other omelette.  The idea of this is that when you stack them and bake them the egg will solidify and the layers will stick together.

Crespeou Yellow Layer2
Crespeou Yellow Layer2

Crespéou – Green Layer

Another genius combination – green onions, green chilli, basil, tarragon and cumin!!! Wow!!!  This layer was really perky and fresh!!!

Once you have cooked all your omelettes, stack them up as neatly as possible.  And into the oven they go to cook up that last bit of runny egg.

 Crespeou - Stacked

 Once cooked through, you can eat your Crespéou as is or trim the edges with a sharp knife to be able to see the layers.  I used a small square pan so I cut mine into four cubes…


 These were superb. I had it for lunch I think 3 days running and looked forward to it on day three as much as I did  on day one. 

And I know what you’re all thinking.  Which layer tasted best?  I did separate one of my cubes and ate each later alone.  And they were all really good.  But the combination was a-may-zing!!!!

Yotam Ottolenghi also says of the Crespéou that:

“If there is one recipe that might make me cringe in years to come, it will, for sure be this one”

I say “I love you.  Can you not be so happily gay and be my boyfriend? You could cook me Crespéou and we could go on a picnic in a field in Provence and I could dance around listening to “Total Eclipse of the Heart” on a vintage Walkman.  Or…hold your head up high and embrace the Crespéou for the lunchbox saviour that it is.  And I’m sure even better on picnics. Especially picnics in Provence.  With heaps of rosé wine and 1970’s disco music on your vintage Walkman.

Which is fairly redundant –  I  can’t think of ANYTHING that wouldn’t be better on a picnic in Provence with heaps of rosé wine and 1970’s music on your Walkman.  Can you?

Speaking of which…before she was Totally Eclipsed in the Heart Bonnie Tyler was Lost in France which would actually be the perfect musical accompaniment to the Crespéou…

 The full recipe can be found in Plenty More or online here

  Bonnie Tyler being Lost in France is here:





Make.  Listen.  Drink lots of rosé and imagine yourself lost in France.

 This week, I’m cooking up some more 70’s Style Retro Picnic Bling courtesy of Jane Grigson!  Have a tres fantastique week what ever you get up to. 

And turn around bright eyes.

And P.S. – I’m totally contemplating the name of this blog to Retro Picnic Bling.  Loving it madly!!!

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