I try to resist having too many kitchen gadgets squeezed into my apartment’s small galley-style kitchen, but somehow I ended up with two waffles irons. One for flatter, traditional waffles and then one of those huge Belgian waffle makers that you see in hotel complementary breakfast line-ups.
Yikes. That’s a big waffle maker. But I figure the more I use it, the more justification I have for owning it. Danielle recently described a breakfast she had in a restaurant as a “dance in your seat meal” – sourdough waffles with candied walnuts and sliced bananas, served with vanilla butter. Hmm…yum.
I was pretty sure I could recreate it with just a few adjustments. I don’t have sourdough starter, but one of the recipes that came with my waffle iron uses yeast. It’s an easy recipe to put together, and in fact, most of it is done the night before, which I always like with breakfast recipes. The waffles ended up tasting fairly sourdoughy actually, plus they were wonderfully crisp on the outside and tender on the inside.
I didn’t have walnuts, but I sugared macadamia nuts using the same method used for the peanuts in the Snickery Squares recipe. For the vanilla butter, I mixed softened butter with my homemade vanilla extract and just a little powdered sugar. I considered using a real vanilla bean, but I got lazy.
Overall, it was great! I wasn’t crazy about the banana, either because it was too ripe, or because I eat bananas so much that I’m just not interested in them in a weekend breakfast. But the nuts were great, and it was nice not having to slather everything in maple syrup. The real find of this meal was the waffle recipe, which is the best I’ve ever made, and will certainly be my standard recipe in the future.
Good Night Waffles (adapted from the Waring Pro Belgian Waffle Maker instruction booklet)
I reduced the butter in this recipe from 8 tablespoons to 6 tablespoons since I knew I’d be topping the waffles with vanilla butter. Because the waffles seemed so good with the lower amount of butter, I figured I might as well stick with it.
½ cup water
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
2¼ teaspoons (one packet) instant dry yeast
2 cups whole milk
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon baking soda
1. The night before, or at least 8 hours before baking, combine the warm water, granulated sugar, yeast, milk, melted butter, and salt. Beat in the flour until smooth (this may be done using a hand mixer on low speed). Wrap bowl tightly with plastic wrap and let stand overnight (or for 8 hours) on the countertop – do not refrigerate.
2. When ready to bake, preheat your waffle maker on your preferred setting. While the waffle maker is heating, stir the eggs, vanilla extract, and baking soda into the batter. Measure out enough batter for your waffle maker and pour into the preheated waffle maker. Use a heat-proof spatula to spread the batter evenly over the grids. Close lid and bake the Belgian waffle in the waffle maker until it indicates the waffle is done.
3. Remove waffle and repeat until the desired number of Belgian waffles has been made. Cover remaining batter and place in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Waffles may be kept warm in an oven at low-heat (200°F). Place Belgian waffles on a cookie sheet on a rack in the warm oven.
This made 6 waffles for me. I served it with 3 sliced bananas, 1 cup sugared macadamia nuts, and 3 tablespoons vanilla sugar. Vanilla sugar was made by mixing 3 tablespoon butter with 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 2 tablespoons powdered sugar.