The wobbly souffle pancake trend is on the rise – here's where to eat it up
Fluffy, puffy and oh-so Instagrammable. Time to sink your teeth into this increasingly popular dish of tiny, round clouds of deliciousness.
Pancakes have always been happy food. But pancakes that look like they’ve been inflated to jiggly proportions and might float into the air at any moment? Those make us all light-headed and giggly.
That’s why the souffle pancake trend is gaining momentum – especially with Osaka’s famed Gram Cafe & Pancakes opening this week at VivoCity.
Souffle pancake dishes are also available at several establishments such as Belle-Ville Pancake Cafe, Kyushu Pancake Cafe, Hoshino Coffee and Cafe De Nicole’s Flower.
Although fluffy, wobbly, cottony pancakes are oh so fun to eat, they’re not so fun to make, shared chef Pang Kok Keong of Antoinette cafe, which has launched a new menu featuring souffle pancakes.
“Every part of (the cooking process) requires you to really focus and pay attention. If you under-whip the egg white, the mix will come out flat. If you over-mix it, your meringue will fall apart,” he divulged. In addition, the griddle has to be exactly the right temperature, and the pancake has to be flipped at just the right moment.
These are some of the reasons why the labour-intensive dish often requires a longer waiting time than regular run-of-the-mill flapjacks, and can also come at a heftier price.
If you’re ready to fine-tune your appreciation for this delightful dessert, here are some places to check out.
GRAM CAFE & PANCAKES
You’ve probably seen the leaning towers of puffy pancakes from Osaka’s Gram Cafe & Pancakes making their rounds on Instagram (we can only presume the cafe’s name refers to the ‘Gram, too).
Each of these buxomy beauties is 4cm in height, made with Japanese flour, and takes 30 minutes to cook. It takes lots of practice to get the technique right, and even the servers have to be specially trained in balancing the plates while carrying them to the tables so that the pancake stack arrives tall and proud. Now that’s a tall order.
The cafe opens in Singapore on Jun 16 and, similar to the system in Japan, only 90 servings of the signature Premium Pancakes are available each day, released in batches of 30 at 11am, 3pm and 6pm. Come early to collect a ticket that signals your place in the queue.
If you don’t snag yourself a ticket, there are other items on the menu that don’t require advanced planning, such as regular pancakes in flavours such as Tiramisu (S$15.90), Mixed Fruits & Chocolate (S$15.90) and Caramelised Banana (S$13.90). Savoury pancake options include Chilli Beans (S$18.90) and Turkey Bacon and Scrambled Egg (S$18.90).
VivoCity, 1 Harbourfront Walk #02-110
Souffle pancakes are some of the stars of Antoinette’s new menu, and here, they come in both sweet and savoury incarnations, including one with a local twist: Ondeh Ondeh (S$16), featuring pillowy pancakes snoozing under a blanket of fresh pandan-leaf custard, with coconut flakes and gula melaka syrup.
The perfectly smooth and round pancakes here are made with only eggs, sugar, flour, butter and milk, with no baking powder or other additives. Chef Pang developed his own recipe after noticing souffle pancakes trending on Instagram and feeling that the souffle element, being classically French, fits in beautifully with the cafe’s French theme.
Also on the menu are the Creme Brulee souffle pancakes (S$16) with vanilla custard and lightly torched caramel; and the Tres Berries (S$16) with strawberries, blueberries, vanilla Chantilly cream and honey maple syrup.
If you don’t happen to have a sweet tooth, there are two savoury souffle pancake dishes as well: The Forestiere (S$16), with creamy mushroom sauce and eggs; and the Benedict (S$18), served with eggs, Serrano ham and Hollandaise.
30 Penhas Road
RIZ LABO KITCHEN
Okay, so, pancakes aren’t exactly health food – depending on who you ask, of course – but at Japanese cafe Riz Labo, the poofy pancakes are made with rice flour.
“Riz” is French for rice, and “labo” is a Nipponised word for “lab”.
Other ingredients that go into the dish include rice oil, organic soy milk and brown sugar, so these pancakes are a great gluten free option (note, though, that the standard serving does come with dairy in the form of whipped cream).
The pancakes taste more bread-y than egg-y but are no less delicious for it, in flavours that include Plain (S$15), Macha (S$18) and Premium Chocolate (S$18). The texture is a little drier than that of regular souffle pancakes, but hey, that’s what the big dollop of cream is for.
Japan Food Town, Wisma Atria Level 4, 435 Orchard Road. 11am to 5pm.