Hong Kong Egg Waffles (sometimes referred to as egg puffs, eggettes or bubble waffles) is a popular street dish. The sweet, waffle-like batter is cooked in a special mold. The end result is a waffle with crisp edges and soft oval “eggs” or “bubbles” which can be easily broken off for snacking.
I made these successfully a few years ago, but it’s definitely been a while. We had some friends visiting this weekend and they expressed interest in wanting to try my egg waffles. I haven’t made the snack since moving and I hadn’t figured out the right setting with me new stove, so the ones I made for them weren’t as pretty as I had hoped.
For the mold, I purchased a Nordic Ware Egg Waffle a few years ago, as it was the only option I could find. It cooks on the stove top, so you do need some time to fiddle around and figure out the ideal temperature and cooking times for your own stove. But it works pretty well. (Update: I’ve been informed by several people that there is now a plug-in version, which I am tempted to buy as it is easier to operate and slightly cheaper.)
Unsatisfied with my Saturday results, I spent most of Sunday researching recipes and playing around with different cooking times. After about a dozen waffles (Mr. K was having way too much fun eating all the rejects), I finally had some pretty ones to show off.
I have yet to be able to get an entire one uniform in color. I think this is because the pan does cook on the stove top and so the heat distribution is not completely even. The commercial ones seem to have more success because they are built like traditional waffle irons that you plug in and cook and it heats evenly across the pan. These are still super tasty and fun though!
After so many trials, here are some tips I’ve learned for the best results:
* Let the batter sit for an hour before cooking.
* Evaporated milk is a key ingredient. I tried substituting it with regular milk and the consistency of the batter isn’t the same. It made the batter thinner and stick to the pan.
* Custard powder is another key ingredient that effects the softness of the waffles. I use Bird’s custard powder which can be found at Fresh & Easy or Amazon. I’ve also had successful results substituting with vanilla pudding powder mix, but I like using custard powder when I can.
* Tapioca starch is also a key ingredient. I’ve seen some recipes that use cornstarch which often is a substitute, but I felt like the results were better with tapioca starch. You can find it in Chinese grocery stores, near the glutinous rice flour, potato flour, etc.
* The first waffle will be a throwaway one. Similar to your first pancake, the first one will be pale, might not come out in one piece, etc.
* Make sure you preheat both sides of the pan first before you start and brush oil on both sides. When your pancake is ready, slowly peel it out, starting from one end and with some help, you should be able to get it out in one piece. It usually rolls up a little as it start to come out of the mold and it’s often served rolled up since it is a street dish.
* It may take a few tries before you find the ideal cooking temperature and time. Mine needed about 4 minutes on each side, but flipping at 2-minute intervals.
Hong Kong Egg Waffles
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tbsp tapioca starch
- 1 tbsp custard powder
- 2 large eggs
- 2/3 cup granulated white sugar
- 2 tbsp evaporated milk
- 150 ml water
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- In a large bowl, add all ingredients and mix with a whisk until only very small lumps remain. Set batter in the fridge for one hour.
- Read instructions on whether your pan can be placed directly onto stove or if it needs a wire rack and do accordingly. Pre-heat each half of the waffle pans on medium-high heat until hot (about 1-2 minutes).
- Lightly brush each pan with vegetable oil (don't use spray). Turn heat to medium (I set mine at dial at 4).
- Pour 3/4 cup of the batter into the middle of the egg waffle pan and then immediately flip pan, making sure to hold pan together tightly so it doesn't leak. Cook for 2 minutes, then flip to other side and cook for 2 minutes. The egg waffle will now require one more cook on each side. Timing may vary depending on stove, but mine needed 2 more minutes on each side. (You first waffle will like still be pale yellow and may have cooked unevenly. Like the first pancake, this is your throwaway one. The ones after should look light brown when they are finished.)
- Remove the side of the pan the finished egg waffle is clinging to, and hold it above a plate with the waffle upside down. Using a chopstick or spoon, gently loosen it from the pan, starting on the top edge, using gravity to help it release. It will start to curl as it falls off and you should be able to get it out in one piece (except for the first waffle).
- Repeat with the remaining batter (re-greasing pans first) and then serve immediately.
The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.