Poffertjes

I find it amazing that after almost two years of blogging, I’ve never put up a Dutch recipe.  I have a handful that I always tell myself I need to cook, but for some reason I have yet to put pan to stove and do it.  You see, the Netherlands and I share a bit of history.

It all began way, way, WAY back my during my senior year in high school when we had a rotary student from Holland come study in my hometown for the year.  Her name was Elvira and she and I instantly hit it off.  When the year ended and it was time for her to leave, I had a hard time saying goodbye.   I decided then and there that I would head overseas the following summer and spend some time with her family on the other end of the pond.

Elvira (in the middle) and her two sisters

I spent a month overseas and learned how truly American I was.  From the languages to the customs to the people, my eyes were opened to many new adventures and lifestyles. I instantly fell in love with the country.  Upon coming home, I signed up to spend a semester overseas through my university.   I studied the Dutch language and a few months later, I was back on a plane to Utrecht, Holland; this time for six months instead of one.

Me posing in front of a tulip field.  Gotta love 90’s fashion.

Anyone who’s ever studied abroad can share with you what an incredible and life changing experience it is.  I could practically write a novel about my time there, but I’ll save a few of the stories for later posts and future Dutch recipes, of which I have many.

Of all my European memories, the ones that stick with me the most revolve around the food.  Every Wednesday and Saturday I would wander down to the Utrecht farmers market and smell the fresh scent of baked goods wafting through the afternoon air.  Fresh stroop wafels, gevulde kookjes and these little treats, poffertjes, filled the bakery carts.  When you walked up to the stand they would make them there as you watched and hand a small bucket over, still warm and steaming from the cool winter air.

The Entrance to the Weekly Farmers Market

Typically poffertjes are served up with powdered sugar and butter, but being the precocious food blogger that I am, I decided to take a slight deviation for the norm.  I think you’ll be happy that I did.

Start out by warming up a bit of milk in a small saucepan until it’s lukewarm and no hotter.  You’ll add in a packet of yeast next and we certainly don’t want to kill those tasty little critters by subjecting them to scalding temps.  Set your milk mixture to the side.

In a separate bowl combine together some flour and a pinch of salt.  Traditional poffertjes call for buckwheat flour, but I didn’t have any on hand so I used all purpose.  If you have buckwheat, feel free to do half and half for a more classic dutch treat.

Make a well in the center of the flour and slowly pour your milk in, stirring as you go.

Once the milk is incorporated, stir in an egg, a little lemon zest and a splash of almond extract.

Now set that beautiful batter to the side and let it rest covered for about 45 minutes.

While your batter is resting, you’ll grab up a few handfuls of your favorite berries and a little maple syrup.  Toss it into a small saucepan and heat it up for about 5 minutes to incorporate the flavors.  You can use a spoon to mash up the berries a bit and release all that fab flavor into the syrup.  Emulsify if desired, strain out the skins/seeds and keep your syrup warm.

Once the batter is ready to cook up, heat a poffertje pan on medium and add a little butter to each pocket.  If you don’t have a special pan, you can also use a pancake griddle.  They won’t be as round, but trust me, they’ll still be plenty tasty.

Spoon in a bit of the batter to each pocket and let it cook up for a minute or two on each side.

Drizzle a little of the warmed syrup over the top and dust with a sprinkle of powdered sugar to finish it off.   Smakelijk Eten!

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Poffertjes

Yield: about 30 poffertjes

Total Time: 1 hour 15 min

Ingredients:

11/2 Cups Milk
2 1/4 tsp Yeast (1 Packet)
2 Cups Flour
1/4 tsp Salt
1 Egg
1 Lemon, Zested
1/2 tsp Almond Extract
1 Tbsp Butter
1 Cup Berries (Fresh or Frozen)Black, Blue or Strawberries all work well
1/2 Cup Maple Syrup
Powdered Sugar, For Dusting

Directions:

In a small saucepan, warm the milk until it's lukewarm.

Remove it from the heat, add in the yeast and set to the side.

In a separate bowl mix together the flour and salt.

Form a well in the flour and slowly add in the milk mixture, stirring to incorporate.

Add in the egg, lemon zest, and almond extract.

Cover and let rest for 45 minutes.

If you have a poofertje pan, that works best, but you can also just make mini pancakes on a griddle. Melt a bit of butter in your pan (or on the griddle) and spoon a small amount of batter into each hole. Cook for a minute or two on each side until golden brown and cooked through.

In a small saucepan, heat the berries and maple syrup for about 5 minutes or until the juice begins to release. You can smash them a bit with a spoon to help the process along.

If desired, emulsify, strain out the berry seeds/skins and serve syrup warm over poffertjes.

Dust with powdered sugar if desired.

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27 Responses to “Poffertjes”

  1. 1

    Mari — January 23, 2012 @ 10:57 pm

    OMG I love these! Thanks for sharing the recipe! :) Nice to meet Elvira and see you as a teen…and love the beautiful tulips field, first time I see one. our poffertjes look delicious.

  2. 2

    anne Alesauskas — January 24, 2012 @ 8:25 am

    these look delicious, i love danish food, so keep on sharing your recipes!! anne

  3. 3

    Rita — January 24, 2012 @ 8:27 am

    What a lovely post full of great memories Julie. Nothing better for a foodie to be at the source of a special recipe.I had never heard of these before; they looks so good!
    Rita

  4. 4

    Katerina — January 24, 2012 @ 9:02 am

    Studying away from your country is truly a lifetime experience, I agree with you! You get to see things from a totally different perspective. Although Holland is quite close to me I didn’t have the chance so far to visit it. I know it’s a beautiful country and these little sweet treats are looking pretty tasty as well!

  5. 5

    Jenna — January 24, 2012 @ 11:37 am

    These look awesome!! And you were totally rocking that sweet 90s fashion. =) I know what you mean about studying abroad–I feel like I could write a novel about my semester in Paris (back in 2004). Maybe someday.

  6. 6

    Laura in Cancun — January 24, 2012 @ 12:16 pm

    Wow, I didn’t know you went to Holland! I’m so jealous! (lovely vest, BTW)

    Those look divine.

  7. 7

    Rach — January 24, 2012 @ 5:12 pm

    This sounds delicious! And I love that you shared some of your history with us! :)

  8. 8

    beti — January 24, 2012 @ 10:23 pm

    they look really fluffy and quite easy to make, I enjoyed to read your story

  9. 9

    Juliana — January 24, 2012 @ 11:54 pm

    Lovely memories Julie…thanks for sharing it!
    These little treats look great…I never had anything like these, and would love to try it out.
    Hope you are having a great week :-)

  10. 10

    5 Star foodie — January 25, 2012 @ 12:09 am

    Thanks for sharing your wonderful memories and these poffertjes look amazing, must be so delicious with berries and maple syrup in them.

  11. 11

    Denise — January 25, 2012 @ 5:58 am

    So funny to see poffertjes here. I’m Dutch and – of course – totally love these! Great to read about your time in the Netherlands. Please let me know if you’ll ever visit again!

  12. 12

    LisaDay — January 25, 2012 @ 7:32 am

    Yum. My Grandmother never made those.

    LisaDay

  13. 13

    Kiran @ KiranTarun.com — January 25, 2012 @ 12:07 pm

    Lovely memories — I visit Amsterdam so often (my sister and her family lives in Holland). I love poffertjes!! Had it almost everyday at my sister’s :)

    And the tulips are to die for. Literally :D

  14. 14

    Zeemaid — January 25, 2012 @ 5:15 pm

    I lived in Holland as an exchange student for a year too. It was so much fun and such an amazing experience. I regret to say that I never had (not that I can remember anyways) poffertjes but then my host family didn’t have a sweet tooth and tried to avoid sweets. Can you imagine? I’d love to try making these!

  15. 15

    LisaDay — January 26, 2012 @ 7:59 am

    One question. I am assuming you whisk the egg before pouring in into the well and letting it rest?

    LisaDay

  16. 16

    Ameena — January 26, 2012 @ 11:31 am

    Why have I never heard of these lovely little poffertjes? I never even saw them when I visited Amsterdam…not sure where I was? And I’m sorry to have missed them because they look fabulous.

  17. 17

    Beth — January 26, 2012 @ 4:59 pm

    I spent just a month living with a French family the summer after high school. It was an unbelievable experience, and I haven’t stopped traveling since. I loved your descriptions of your time in Utrecht, and I love that recipe too!

  18. 18

    Sanjeeta kk — January 27, 2012 @ 6:50 am

    Hey..this is something similar to what we make here in India..its called Appam, minus the yeast. Love your version and the berry syrup, Julie.
    Hugs and kisses.

  19. 19

    Dina — January 30, 2012 @ 1:44 pm

    enjoyed the post! yum!

  20. 20

    Paula @ Spoons n Spades — February 8, 2012 @ 1:46 am

    What wonderful looking treats your poffertjes are! I’ve never come across them before, so am looking forward to giving them a try.

  21. 21

    Jean N — February 19, 2012 @ 10:36 pm

    Julie,
    How fun to think that we will actually BE in the Netherlands with your mom and dad in April. We will surely be trying to find warm poffertjes as we bike through North and South Holland.

  22. 22

    Gitte — March 6, 2012 @ 5:14 am

    Looks like they turned out perfectly. They sure do sound wonderful and remind me of the Danish Æbleskiver. Thanks for sharing this :)

  23. 23

    Elvira Wright — March 29, 2012 @ 12:12 pm

    You should start your own poffertjeskraam (pancake stand) on the Utrechtse Markt! Looks delicious.
    I have happy memories from my Appleton-stay and my best friend. You made a big difference!
    Love Elvira

  24. 24

    Lisa — May 7, 2012 @ 1:57 pm

    So happy to have found this recipe! I just returned from Amsterdam yesterday and we ate these every morning. It was so easy to just buy them at Albert Heijn and my son LOVED them! Thank you!

  25. 25

    micupoftea — June 7, 2013 @ 7:41 pm

    Cant wait to try these…just saw them being made on an International House Hunters episode. Yum! I love buckwheat flour so I will use it along with AP flour. Thanks for the tutorial :)

  26. 26

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  27. 27

    billy driver — October 18, 2014 @ 1:19 pm

    I spent 4 years in Utrect, loved every minute. I ate many Pofferjes and strope waffels. Still have a yen for them often. Nice too read comments from other lovers of Holland and the fine food treats. Thanks Bill

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