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Polish Recipes Newsletter

Ham & Cheese Crepe Recipe (Nalesniki z Szynka i Serem)

Crepes are enjoyed worldwide--call it placinki, blinchiki, blini, or nalesniki.   In Poland, crepes, called nalesniki, are very popular and a wide variety of crepe fillings from savory to sweet are enjoyed year round.   Nalesniki are thin rounds of cooked batter made from eggs and flour.  In this ham & cheese crepe recipe, you can make it with regular flour or whole wheat, we offered both options.  They are great for breakfast or dinner and freeze well.   

Ham & Cheese Crepe Recipe (Nalesniki z Szynka i Serem)

Nalesniki Filling:Ham Cheese Crepe Recipe Nalesniki

  • 1 small chopped onion
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil 
  • 1.5 cups chopped mushrooms
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley (chopped)
  • 2 Tbsp butter 
  • 1/4 cup Madeira
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon chili pepper or paprika
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon marjoram
  • 1/2 pound of smoked ham, chopped
  • 1.5 cups grated Swiss or Gruyere cheese
  • salt & pepper to taste

Nalesniki Crepes:

  • 3 eggs
  • 3 cups flour (can substitute 50% with whole wheat pastry flour)
  • 1.5 cups milk
  • 1.5 cups water (use 2 cups if using whole wheat flour)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Nalesniki Sauce (Bechamel Sauce):

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Ground pepper to taste
  • Pinch of nutmeg, allspice, savory, marjoram, & paprika
  • Juice of 1 lemon


1.  Batter: prepare batter for crepes first.  Mix 3 eggs, 1.5 cups milk, flour, 1.5 cups water, 1 tsp salt, and 1 tbsp olive oil in a blender for 3 minutes. Cover and rest for 30 minutes while preparing the crepe filling.


2.  Nalesniki Filling: Sauté onion in olive oil until lightly brown.  Turn heat to medium, add garlic and rest of ingredients except ham and cheese.  When mushrooms are cooked, turn heat off, add cooked ham and cheese, mix, and set aside.

Nalesniki Crepes Recipe

3.  Make crepes:  mix nalesniki batter again and test consistency.  If too thick, you may need to add more milk.  Best way to test is to put a small amount of mixture on your greased, 7-inch hot skillet.  Tip pan so batter is evenly distributed.  Cook over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, turning over with spatula.  Do not brown or over cook as they will lose their pliability.  Remove from pan and test.  If too thick and don't roll easily, add a little bit of milk.  If too thin, add flour.  When ready for the rest of the batter, add 1/3 cup of batter to hot pan and repeat procedure with full crepe.  Place them on a platter to cool when done.  Repeat with the rest of the batter, adding butter to skillet as needed.


4.  Assemble crepes.  Lay the crepes onto a clean surface and evenly distribute the ham and cheese filling over the face of the crepes.  Then quickly roll up each nalesniki into a thick but tight cigar shape.  Lightly butter the bottom of a casserole dish, and carefully arrange the nalesniki next to each other. 


Nalesniki Crepes

5.  Prepare Crepe Sauce (Bechamel Sauce).  Melt butter in a medium saucepan over low heat.  Stir in flour until smooth.  Cook, stirring, until bubbles begin to form.  Gradually add milk, stirring constantly.  Bring to a simmer, and rest of ingredients.  Cook until thickened, about 5 minutes.  Add lemon juice, stir, and test for taste.  Adjust seasonings as needed.  Can add extra Swiss or  parmagiano-reggiano cheese to sauce.


6.  Bake.  Pour your favorite sauce over crepes and bake for 15-20 minutes at 350 degrees or until cheese melts.


*Add A comment below, leave a cooking suggestion about this Polish Recipe or any of our Polish Recipes.  We want your feedback!

Nalesniki a day ahead?

Could I make everything the day before, refrigerate overnight and then put them in the oven when guests arrive? I presume the baking time would have to be longer. Thanks.

Sure, why not!

Sure, why not try it!  We have reheated them before and they still taste great.  I would add the sauce on top right before you cook them.

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