Belgian Waffles recipe

Or an advanced recipe for beginners. The recipe is adapted from Waring Pro’s Classic Belgian Waffles recipe, with simplifications in the ingredients and use of proofing oven to speed up the preparation. It is also augmented with a list of tools either required or useful for the preparation.

Suggested tools:

  • A waffle iron. I have an old Waring Pro waffle maker, which makes a single large round waffle at a time although I don’t have experience with other brands to recommend one over another. This small appliance has been a reliable trooper. The iron came with a booklet containing this and other recipes.
  • An oven with a bread proofing function. Most modern oven will have this. It warms the oven to the ideal temperature for yeast, i.e. 100-105 F. You might also use the ‘Warm’ function on some oven to keep waffles fresh a bit longer, at a temperature of about 180-200 F. Do not use warm function for the yeast, as it would kill it(!)
  • A temperature probe. I use an All-Clad T223 myself for several years now. With this you can check the temperature of the water and of the milk before mixing the yeast so it is at the ideal 105 F.
  • A silicon spatula. The dough and some other ingredients will be sticky. The silicon spatula allows to easily scoop the sides and bottoms of pots and containers.
  • An electric egg beater – whisk. Sure you can also beat egg whites into stiff peaks by hand, but that is challenging and exhausting. Go the easy way. I use a KitchenAid Stand Mixer, which I wouldn’t recommend to buy just to beat egg whites but which has many other functions.
  • Set of measuring tablespoons, teaspoons and cups.
  • A sift for the flour. I use one with a spinning handle on the side that significantly speeds up the process. Here’s a like model on Amazon.
  • A small bowl for waking the yeast (1 cup minimum, or larger)
  • Two large bowls for mixing the flour, raising the dough, etc…
  • A small sauce pan.
  • The stove and/or a water boiler. We have a Zojirushi water boiler, ideal for preparing tea and here convenient for instant hot water. Here’s a similar Zojirushi water boiler on Amazon.
  • A fork, for mixing.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup water at 100-105 F, divided in two halves. Do not take warm water from the tap – start from cold and warm up on the stove, or mix cold water with hot water from a water boiler.
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast.
  • 3 cups flours, to sift.
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  • 4 eggs, separated.
  • 1/3 cup sugar and a pinch.
  • 1 1/2 cup whole milk, at 100-105 F.
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter. The printed recipe called for 8 tablespoons, which would be a whole stick. Possible but is that really necessary?
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil.
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract.

Preparation:

Use a fork to mix the yeast with half of the water and a pinch of sugar in the small bowl. Put in the oven on proofing, so the yeast activates while you prepare the next steps. Mix again when you are ready to use the activated yeast later in the recipe.

Sift the flour and mix the salt in the first large bowl, set aside.

On the stove on low, melt the butter in the small sauce pan. And the milk, olive oil, vanilla and second half of water. Use the temperature probe to check that the temperature reaches 100 F but no more than 105 F. Cut the flame.

In the second large bowl, mix the egg yolks and the sugar using the fork. Blend the activated yeast in (the silicon spatula will come handy to scoop out everything from the small bowl). Then blend in the warm preparing from the stove.

Stir the liquid mixture into the flour mixture and beat until smooth. The kitchen aid mixer may come handy if you have a second bowl for it such that you can still beat the egg whites.

Speaking off, time to beat the egg whites into stiff peaks. Then fold them into the batter.

Return the batter to the oven on proofing. Stir every 15 minutes. After 30 minutes I believe the batter is ready (the original recipe calls for 1 hour but does not make use of proofing).

Cooking the batter in the iron should now be self-evident. Note that the waffles are at their best only for a very short time after they get out of the iron, so your family or guests better be at the table once you start cooking the first batch.

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