Food & Drink

New food fad: spray-on pancakes

SAN FRANCISCO — You want pancakes, but adding water to powder and stirring it seems like too much effort. Enter Batter Blaster, the pancake you just point and spray.

Gastronomic genius? Or sign of the apocalypse? It ­depends on how you feel about really fast food.

Nate Steck, part of the two-man team that developed Batter Blaster, said it puts something hot and tasty on the tables of people who have lost touch with the most important meal of the day.

”If you sit down with your family in the morning, you can cook these pancakes so quick,“ he said.

The contents are pressurized, and the can has a nozzle, making it easy to create animal, geometric and letter-shaped pancakes.

Preparation: Shake the can firmly before spraying. Cleanup: Rinse the nozzle under running water.

The product, which is organic, comes more than a century after the launch of a powdered mix that became Aunt Jemima Pancake Mix.

Batter Blaster begs comparison to other ultra-convenience foods, such as Easy Cheese, that staple of dorm-room soirees, and Reddi-Wip, the ubiquitous canned whipped cream.

Some people flip for the spray-and-bake breakfasts.

”They're fantastic,“ says Keith Bussell, a Los Angeles software developer who bought Batter Blaster on a lark and loved the ease of making one or two pancakes without stirring.

Others aren't impressed.

”That is just wrong on so many levels!“ Oakland ­accountant Beth Terry wrote in her blog review of the ­Batter Blaster.

In an interview, Terry said she has no plans to try the product, but that her big complaint is that it comes in a can, which she said takes an energy and resource toll even though it is recyclable.

Batter Blaster is available at a number of grocers, including the Meijer chain, and is expected to expand to other regions later this year.

A single can, which makes more than two dozen 4-inch pancakes, costs about $5 to $6. Three-packs cost about $10.

Sean O'Connor, a former restaurateur, was looking for a brisker breakfast and realized it wouldn't be that hard to put pancake ingredients in a can.

He was right. The tough part turned out to be squeezing cash out of investors, many of whom found the idea too strange.

Using financing from family and friends, the two were able to bring their product to market late last year.

More than 400,000 cans have sold.

Some buyers appear to be new to the kitchen. One customer's complaint was that the pancakes stuck to the pan.

Apparently someone didn't know about that other corner-cutter, canned cooking spray.

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