AmsterdamThe Netherlands

Dutch Food Tour: poffertjes (mini pancakes)!

posted by Daphne April 3, 2017
Poffertjes | Daily Delicious Eats

Do you like pancakes? Of course you do. Whereas Americans have delicious, big, fluffy pancakes, we have adorable, bite-sized and fluffy mini pancakes called poffertjes. I love these so much. So much. This is the first stop on our Dutch Food Tour, because I think Dutch food deserves more love. This food tour will also make you wonder why Dutch people are not fat. It truly is a mystery.

Poffertjes history

Although no one is entirely sure where poffertjes came from, there are two main theories:

The French brought them

The first theory says that poffertjes are originally a French dish, brought over to The Netherlands by merchants. I don’t believe poffertjes are very well known in France, but I don’t know why. How could they not love fluffy mini pancakes?!

They were made in a Dutch monastery

The second theory is that a couple of French monks in The Netherlands started experimenting with buckwheat flour during a shortage of wheat flour. The resulting poffertjes were such a success, they started selling them to the public.

According to old cookbooks, there was a poor man’s version and a rich man’s version. The first was made with buckwheat flour, water and yeast; the latter with a mix of buckwheat and wheat flour, milk, yeast and eggs.

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Regardless of where they came from, we know poffertjes were already eaten at fairs in 1720. It’s a tradition that holds to this day – you can find fresh poffertjes at festivals and celebrations. They’re made to order in a dimpled poffertjes pan. Watch this poffertjes master at work:

If you get poffertjes in Amsterdam, it’s likely you won’t see them being made like this. Poffertjes have understandably become a popular tourist snack, so a lot of shops will sell them, but not a lot of them will be this skilled.

One that I do like in Amsterdam is a restaurant I grew up with, near the Heineken Brewery and the Albert Cuyp market: De Carrousel Pannenkoeken. Yes, the restaurant is styled like a carousel. But unfortunately no, you can’t ride it. All you can do is eat sit down and eat your poffertjes.

How to eat poffertjes?

With TONS OF BUTTER AND POWDERED SUGAR. Possibly some fresh fruits and whipped cream if you like. Poffertjes are not diet-friendly. And no, you can’t eat them without butter. That would be silly.

Have you ever had poffertjes? I actually like them more than regular pancakes, because each bite gives you a soft, fluffy centre and a slightly crispy outer ring. Let me know if there’s some place that serves the best poffertjes, because I want to eat them all!

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