Secrets to Making the Perfect Fluffy Japanese Soufflé Pancakes
There are times that familiar dishes are given a bit of a facelift or a twist. Some can go unnoticed by many, while there are dishes that will be embraced and loved by people enough for them to go viral.
A perfect example would be the Japanese soufflé pancakes. These whimsical, fluffy treats were first popularized in Japan, but as soon as the rest of the world caught wind, it suddenly went viral.
According to Today.com, these Japanese pancakes have always been different from their American counterparts.
As explained by the author of the book Japanese Home Cooking, Sonoko Sakai, in Japan, pancakes are treated as a dessert. It is something you eat at 3 o'clock as a snack with whipped cream, while the American counterparts treat it as a breakfast dish.
Maiko Kyogoku, the owner of Japanese home-cooking spot Bessou in New York City, states that the Japanese do an excellent job of adapting and putting their own twist on Western foods. Hotcakes are one of those trends, especially currently when people are quarantined. Thus it becomes a source of comfort.
However, many are more interested in how to achieve the signature fluffiness of these Japanese soufflé pancakes. According to Just One Cookbook, the secret starts with the egg whites.
They are beaten and whipped with sugar to create a light meringue. After which, it gets folded into the batter to add more rise. Here are some more tips to achieve the perfect fluffy Japanese soufflé pancake.
1. Beat the egg whites vigorously.
The perfect Japanese pancake is only achievable if the whites are right. This starts with making sure you don't spill any yolk in your whites and that the whites are cold. Whip egg whites together with sugar until they form stiff peaks. An indication of this shows the meringue you make will stand straight up when you pull the beaters out.
2. Combine your mixtures carefully.
There is also the correct way of combining your egg whites with the rest of the batter. Add in a bit of egg white first to break up the batter. Gently fold the rest in to be fully incorporated but to maintain its airiness. Make sure to do this process slowly and carefully.
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3. Preheat your pan at the lowest setting.
One more critical thing to do is preheat the pan at the lowest heat to help prevent hot spots. This will give you control over the cooking time and the final result.
4. Stack them up and be patient.
Another key to making fluffy pancakes is to add a new pile over the batter on the pan after it starts to form. Waiting is also necessary for this step to go perfectly. Wait for the first level of batter to set a bit, and then add some more.
5. Cover your pan and let your pancakes cook slowly.
Unlike regular pancakes, if you use higher heat for cooking these, the pancakes may look done, but the inside will be too raw. To lock in the heat and moisture, cover the pan with a lid and continue steady slow cooking over low heat.