There’s nothing intrinsically wrong with serving pizza and beer to your guests. We all sometimes have less motivation and little time for preparing food. What if, however, you want to really entertain and impress a few people?
While serving something that’s actually tasty is obviously to be recommended, a little tableside heater rarely disappoints. The ability to carve a roast chicken without mutilating the poor thing is already impressive, as is flambéing a dessert or even a steak. If you add a special contraption to the mix, you can easily make yourself look like a respectable chef with only a minimum of practice.
This is where owning a crêpe maker comes in. Although many people confuse them with pancakes, they’re quite different in one respect: crêpe batter doesn’t contain a raising agent (fluffifier) such as baking powder. The ideal crêpe is therefore paper-thin, a little crunchy and frilly at the edges, and light enough for a strong breeze to snatch up.
Once cooked, they’re best served immediately, which is one reason to opt for a tabletop model instead of a stovetop crêpe pan. Another is the precise temperature control: one secret to great crêpes is to use only a tiny amount of batter, spread it over the whole surface as quickly as you can using the supplied tool, and take it off as soon as it’s a nice golden color. Then, simply add your favorite sweet or savory filling and fold or roll to serve.
The variable temperature setting is also great for making tortillas from scratch instead of using store-bought, or as a compact hotplate for the dinner table (although even the lowest temperature setting might be a little too hot for this). You could even try using it to fry up some eggs and bacon for breakfast, although the low lip surrounding the cooking surface won’t do well at catching grease.
There is one important caveat to this model you should know about, though: the manual clearly states that it’s designed to be used for a maximum of an hour at a time. If you really want a restaurant-quality machine, be prepared to pay at least three times as much.