Waffles

P5080179As a rule, I dislike one-use kitchen electrical devices; who has room for a hot dog cooker, a panini press, a veggie steamer, an egg boiler, a raclette grill?  At least Target plainly labels such devices as “novelty appliances“.  Only one exception clutters my kitchen:  the belgian waffle maker.  Regular, shallow-grid waffles just aren’t crunchy enough, nor do their divots hold sufficient maple syrup or Steen’s cane syrup.  Granted, the waffle batter needs to rest overnight for maximum flavor, but it is easily stirred together and holds for three or four days in the refrigerator.  Waffle add-ins are easy, too:  sprinkle some chopped nuts atop the batter before you close the wafflemaker, or stir a mashed banana into the batter.  Chocolate is best added in the form of cocoa powder added to the batter or chips sprinkled on at the table, as chocolate bits invariably burn inside the iron.

Yeast Waffle Batter

1 1/3 cups all purpose flour

Heaping 1 tsp instant yeast

1 T sugar

Pinch of salt

7/8 cup milk

1/8 cup water

1/8 cup butter

2 eggs

Optional:  flavorings like nutmeg, cinnamon, mashed bananas, or vanilla extract

Combine flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large bowl; stir to mix well.  Heat milk, water, and butter until warm (around 120 degrees).  Add to flour mixture along with the eggs.  Beat (by hand with a whisk or with a handheld mixer) until evenly moistened, then beat quickly for 1 minute.  Stir in any flavorings.  Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours (overnight is better) before using.  Batter keeps, covered and refrigerated, for three to four days.  Pour batter into preheated waffle iron and cook until deeply golden brown.

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