Sunday, July 26, 2009
Homemade Belgian Waffles
Waffles often fall into the category of things I want to go out for instead of making at home. This is for several reasons:
1) I don't own a waffle maker and think it is one of those kitchen appliances that is more trouble than it is worth in the cleaning department
2) I thought that it would be too hard to figure out how long to cook them without burning the outside and leaving the inside raw
3) I tend to be more of a savory cook than a sweet cook
But things have changed for the better! We were recently watching a food/travel program on the Travel Network called "Extreme Fast Foods", which featured a place called the Waffle Cabin., which is situated halfway down a ski hill in Vermont. Ski a bit, stop for waffle. Hold waffle in one hand while skiing down rest of hill!!
Now even though I grew up in Canada, my family was never a downhill skiing family. I tried snowboarding a few times, but my butt has never wanted to go back. Seeing the waffle cabin, I seriously considered taking up skiing next winter just so that I could get some of these in my belly! E was even more excited about it than I was, which led to him talking about waffles almost everyday until we happened to go to Karl's Sausage kitchen and found the special ingredients for Belgian Waffles.
Then he started talking about waffles everyday, several times a day until we went to Target and got this waffle maker for $18.99. I gave in because really if it was a terrible, useless contraption, less than 20 dollars was not that much to sacrifice.
The key to this type of waffle is the pearl sugar. It creates a nice crispy and sweet outer shell to the waffles and aids in giving the nice caramelized colour. Also key to decreasing the mess factor is following a Belgian waffle recipe which makes more of a moldable dough rather than a batter. This means there is no batter pouring and much less mess in the waffle iron and thus much less clean-up duty. We made three varieties: plain, chocolate chip and cinnammon chocolate chip.
I'm quite surprised that waffle cabins haven't caught on in popularity in New England as I imagine it would be a great cold weather food. E and I have been joking that should our careers not work out, we would consider opening up our own waffle cabin somewhere in Boston!