Bittara Appa (Sri Lankan Egg Hoppers)

A Sri Lankan street food specialty of a nested egg in a coconut milk and rice-based small crispy crepe topped with cilantro.

Prep Time:
4 hours 15 min
Cook Time:
30 min


  • 4 tsp ( 20 mL ) oil for frying, divided
  • 8 large eggs
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tbsp ( 30 mL ) cilantro, finely chopped (optional for garnish)

Hopper Batter

  • ¼ tsp ( 1.25 mL ) quick-rising yeast
  • 1 cup ( 250 mL ) warm water
  • ½ cup ( 125 mL ) rice flour
  • 1 cup ( 250 mL ) coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp ( 15 mL ) sugar
  • ¼ tsp ( 1.25 mL ) salt
  • 1 egg


  1. In a large bowl, mix yeast with warm water and set aside for 10 minutes to allow yeast to activate.

  2. Add rice flour and whisk until smooth. Set aside in warm place for 2 hours.

  3. Whisk in coconut milk, sugar and salt. Set aside for another 2 hours.

  4. Whisk in 1 egg to finish hopper batter. Thin out batter with a tablespoon of water if mixture has become very thick. Consistency should be thinner than pancake batter.

  5. Heat a small non-stick kadai or wok with ½ tsp of oil on medium-high heat. Add ¼ cup of hopper batter in centre of kadai and swirl around so batter spreads evenly, thinning at the edges. Cover with lid and cook on medium heat for a minute until the centre of hopper is partially cooked.

  6. Crack 1 egg in the centre of hopper. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover with lid and cook on medium-low heat for a few minutes, or until egg yolk is cooked to desired doneness. Garnish with cilantro (optional). Continue with remaining batter and eggs.


For this recipe, selecting the right non-stick wok is important. You can try using a non-stick skillet as an option and still get great results. When cooking the egg in hopper ensure the temperature setting isn’t too high, otherwise the bottom will burn.