Monday, May 12, 2014

Waffles with the Works

Last year for my birthday my husband bought himself a waffle iron. True story. He then used it to make me waffles for a celebratory birthday breakfast, and it was a weekday and all, so that took some planning and recipe-googling. It actually was a really nice way to start the day. After I had eaten my waffles, I did narrow my eyes and say, "Well played, Sir, well played" because while I have a take it or leave it relationship with waffles (and thus have never cared enough to buy a waffle iron myself), V loves them.

I can't say we've ever made weekday waffles since that birthday morning. But we regularly pull out the waffle iron when friends come over for brunch and set out a build-your-own-waffle bar. It has high crowd pleasing potential for not a lot of effort.

If you ask me, the perfect waffle should be crispy on the outside, tender on the inside and light as a feather. We tried out a few recipes before we found the perfect one in Mark Bittman's How To Cook Everything. It is a overnight waffle which makes early morning entertaining that much easier because you do most of the work the night before. Not that I'd call mixing a bunch of things "work". The trick is that these waffles are yeasted. The yeast works overnight to make light and tender waffles scented with the aroma of fresh bread. I changed the recipe a little to add some cornmeal and it makes them even more crispy and flavorful.

Yeasted Overnight Waffles
(Recipe adapted from Mark Bittman's How To Cook Everything)

1. In a large bowl, mix
  • 1 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup coarse cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp. instant yeast
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
2. To the dry ingredients, add in this order and mix
  • 2 cups milk (I use whole milk)
  • 1 stick (8 tbsp.) butter, melted
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
3. The batter will be loose. Cover (not airtight) and let the batter rise at room temperature overnight.

4. When you are ready to make waffles, separate two eggs. Stir in the yolks into the batter. Whisk the whites to soft peaks and fold them gently into the batter.

5. Make waffles using some oil on the waffle batter. We get better results when we let the waffles for bit longer to let them get crispy and golden.

Notes:
1. By the way, once when we had guests who wanted to avoid eggs, we used ground flaxseed in place of the eggs and the substitution worked quite nicely.
2. These waffles freeze well too.

The waffles themselves are not sweet. We tend to set out some of these toppings:
  • Peanut butter and other nut butters
  • Jam or preserves
  • Maple syrup or honey or agave nectar
  • Salted caramel sauce
  • Chocolate sauce
  • Whipped cream
  • Berries and other fresh seasonal fruit
  • Butter
  • Ice cream (in which case the waffles are officially the dessert course)
V's favorite waffle combination: crunchy peanut butter, honey and sliced bananas.

I'd really like to try a savory waffle sometime. I've even seen waffles with idli batter. Do you make pancakes or waffles on weekends? 

For this birthday, V did not get a kitchen appliance, either for himself or for me! He got me an iphone so I can retire my 7 year old flip phone, and hence join the 21st century, I suppose.

Have a great week, friends.

63 comments:

  1. Congrates for iphone, You are not the only one, I had flip phone till last year too, and everyone around use to tease me for it! Though there are more benefits with iphone, I have to hide these days iphone for my little ones. I make eggless pancakes using whole wheat pastry flour and flax seed (egg substitute), It took sometime for me to learn to make good enough pancakes. Have a good week.
    Mamta

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    1. Whole wheat pastry flour works beautifully in waffles and pancakes. Yes, I have no intention of sharing my phone with my toddler- she will hijack it given half a chance!

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  2. I think I have this recipe written down somewhere in one of my recipe diaries. I make waffles at least once a month, my son LOVES them. I freeze the leftovers and they are great for breakfast on weekdays. I have seen many savory waffles, but I think I like my waffles sweet :-) Rachael ray makes everything from red velvet cake to brownies and some savory stuff too in a waffle maker.
    Enjoy your Iphone, yup it's almost time to join the 21st century ;-)

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    1. Yes- they do freeze very well- I edited the recipe to add that note. Thanks for the reminder! I just don't like sweets much and especially not for breakfast. But a savory waffle would be quite lovely :)

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  3. Hehe - thats a very self-serving gift! I have for years put off buying a waffle iron but I think I may finally buy one this year as my kids love waffles.

    I hate single tasker appliances and am trying hard to justify this purchase.

    In the meanwhile, a few ideas for you to put the waffle iron to good use:
    - This blog has a lot of recipes for waffles - http://www.teaandcookiesblog.com/?s=waffle
    - A friend of mine used the waffle maker with uthappa batter - not sure how she tweaks it.

    Happy Birthday and belated Mothers Day

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    1. I hate unitaskers too and hence my reluctance to buy a waffle maker. But I must say we've used it often enough to justify it. Thanks for the link- so many great ideas. I've been afraid that idli/uttapam batter would stick horrendously to the waffle iron and result in hours of scrubbing so I've never tried it. But oiling well might do the trick.

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    2. Check this out: http://chefinyou.com/recipe/dosa-waffles

      Now I have to buy this!

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    3. OMG OMG I will try this on Saturday! I have some dosa batter in the freezer- will report back :)

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  4. I've eaten waffles only once before, but did not like them at all. I don't eat eggs and it's probably their eggy smell that puts me off. Do you know if this recipe would work without eggs?
    My husband has never given me a gift in the 7 yrs that we've been together. NEVER EVER. True story ;)

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    1. OK I re-read my own question and it doesn't make much sense :)
      What I meant to ask was if there was a way to make these without the eggs AND flaxseed.
      Sorry for the double comment, wasn't able to edit the previous one.

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    2. If you like tinkering with recipes, you could try with other egg substitutes like applesauce/banana but I have no idea what would work. Or look for tried and tested vegan waffle recipes that don't call for flaxseed. Good luck!

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  5. my husband's birthday is coming this weekend and he loves waffles. we have an old waffle iron in the back of the kitchen shelves rotting away. i am tempted to get it going and surprise him with some waffles!!

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    1. I think that is a really sweet idea. This recipe is so easy to make too.

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  6. I love pancakes and make them on some weekend mornings. I get the buttermilk mix from trader joes. Personally I like to make mine savoury with cilantro, green chillies, red onions, cheese etc. I'm not a huge fan of waffles but enjoy them when I have them at cafés etc.
    I love my iPhone. I got mine in 2010 when my husband and I lived for a year working in separate states. In many ways the phone replaced the husband ( only joking!).
    I love discovering new apps- one of my favourites is listening to BBC 4 extra radio- they broadcast some very good dramas/ books that I've enjoyed.
    Have fun with your new toy.
    Arpita.

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    1. Oh man your savory waffles sound really good! Ooh I'd love a books on tape kinda app. I'm going to try and find it.

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    2. Nupur, the app I have is called iradiouk . It's free to download from tha App Store. Once you have the app the radio channel bbc4 extra is the drama channel.

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  7. My sonand I are waffle lovers, M, not at all. I do have a waffle iron (got it at a couple of years ago- thanksgiving mania) and use it to make breakfast for my son. These days I am hooked to the Multi-grain pancake and waffle mix from Sprouts. just add water !
    I love your idea of a waffle bar and will try that (hopefully soon) and this recipe where I can use flaxseed /meal as an egg substitute.
    I have seen a pic where someone used idli / dosa batter in the waffle iron and it was a success ( probably pinterest of FB) , i guess spraying the iron with PAM will do the job.
    Congratulations on the iPhone! It is awesome and soon you might think, why did I wait for SO long! Enjoy your new 'toy' and download some great apps.

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    1. A waffle bar is very easy to set up and your son is at the right age where he and his friends might think it is the most awesome thing in the world ;) So what are your favorite apps? I just got whatsapp but have no idea how you actually use it.

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  8. Hi Nupur.. Enjoy your birthday gift.. and wish you a very Happy Birthday. Love the idea of a waffle brunch. Would enjoy being there trying various combinations. Enjoy waffles but no waffle maker for now. :)

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    1. Michelle- you could do a pancake brunch/bar in exactly the same way! Thanks very much for the birthday wishes.

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  9. Hi Nupur, Enjoy your birthday gift.. and wish you a very Happy Birthday. Love the idea of a waffle brunch. Love waffles and the toppings sound really good.

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  10. happy birthday!! And a warm welcome to the 21st century :P.
    Though I work in the technology field and I am fascinated and love technology, I am not a big fan of using it (or rather overusing it) for myself. All my gadgets have been gifts and I am pretty sure I would still have a flip phone if my company didnt pay for (and mandate) a smartphone!
    I am guilty of giving the hubby self serving gifts! and baking self serving cakes on his birthday..Figure this...Hubby does not like chocolate at all and every bday I make him a chocolate cake (because I heart choco! )... On hindsight it does seem cruel that I do this..maybe this bday il bake him a cake of his choice! lol.
    I love waffles, and I had got a cheap waffle maker from craigslist once, but we used it only once in 3 years and I figured that we would not be able to do justice to a single operation device and gave it away during our recent apartment move.

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    1. Yeah this hi-tech world is fascinating ;) I'm like you, I will use and enjoy my smartphone but definitely don't have any intention of checking it every minute of the day. And yes, please would you bake a non-chocolate cake for once ;)

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  11. I love the yeasted waffles, they are so crunchy and light. I've used Marion Cunningham's recipe and it is probably similar. I make them and freeze the leftovers too.
    Welcome to the world of smartphones. I don't use mine for much, had a few apps for my daughter which I deleted because all she did was beg to play them all day. Now, she has forgotten all about them. I do love using whatsapp to stay in touch with my family. There is also a Goodreads app :)
    Have fun with it.

    -Anu

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    1. Hi Anu- you know, whatsapp was my primary motivation for this rather reluctant conversion to a smartphone. I can see how if I let my toddler play with the phone, that would just be a slippery slope. Right now we're letting her watch a few videos online but man the lure of the screen is strong at all ages. Ooh there's a goodreads app? I have much to learn ;)

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    2. Whatsapp is really, really great to stay in touch with family. But, eventually, I got added to various cousins, school friends types groups and the not-funny jokes and pakau forwards drive me nuts. But, I'm shameless and just delete myself from such groups. A'int nobody got time for that.

      -Anu

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    3. I downloaded whatsapp but haven't figured out how it works. Sometimes I can only sigh at myself :D Thanks for the heads up- I will definitely refrain from joining random groups.

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  12. Happy belated birthday! I have a birthday coming up - I think I need a waffle maker for sure. We do pancakes on occasion, and a PB&J sandwich with pancakes instead of bread is one of my favorite sweets.

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    1. Oh I think you should drop broad hints and get a waffle maker! A waffle sandwich sounds really decadent actually.

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  13. Waffles are big at our home and I make them almost every weekend. Desi loves his waffles-- I like cooking up all kinds for him and that's the fun part for me. My favorite are Mango Waffles.

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    1. Mango waffles- you really do come up with the most unusual and delicious things, Vaishali.

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  14. And a very (belated) happy birthday to you, dear Nupur. :)

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  15. I have a George foreman grill with a waffle maker attachments. I love that it's not a single use gadget. I use Arrowhead Mills multi grain pancake/waffle mix. It's delicious without any suspicious looking ingredients. My favorite easy of eating - chocolate chips in the batter and strawberry/bananas on top with pure maple syrup.

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  16. Happy birthday Nupur! The waffles look great, I'm looking forward to trying this recipe!
    Hope you enjoy your phone. I recently found an app called Overdrive which allows you to link to your public library account and borrow ebooks and audiobooks....i'm hooked :)

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    1. Thanks Pooja for mentioning the app- it sounds like fun and I'd love to listen to an audiobook (I haven't ever listened to one)!

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    2. I love Overdrive! It's my most used app (also What's App.) R

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  17. Belated Birthday Wishes Nupur! We do have a Waffle maker. Kids and DH love waffles and it is primarily used by him during weekends. He mixes all kinds of fruits and slightly powdered nuts and they usually taste great for even people like me who don't particularly like waffles.

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    1. Hi Indo- nuts in a waffle batter sounds particularly decadent and tasty!!

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  18. Nupur, I like Mark Bittman's waffle recipe too. (Although I make waffles for the kids, I'm not a big fan either of sweet waffles.) I do have a savory sweet potato waffle recipe I have been meaning to try.

    Apps we use a lot are Skype, recently My Fitness Pal (food/ exercise diary) and Mint (on my ipad). (Besides overdrive, what's app, netflix and audible.) Appsgone free alerts you to daily free apps with reviews but I ended up getting too many apps so now I don't use it much.

    Yeah, DO NOT make the mistake of downloading kids apps even though it's very tempting esply on trips etc. All my son sees me as is an Ipad/iphone provider I think. R

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    1. I love savory and sweet potatoes so combining them in a waffle sounds very delish. Thanks for mentioning all those apps- and for the word of warning for children's apps. It is a slippery slope with kids and screens.

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  19. This has nothing to do with waffles (although I love them, and cannot wait to eat them again), but everything to do with an old post of yours, which I cannot seem to find now. You had mentioned that you read to your daughter from the very beginning. As a new mother to a little girl, I do that too, and I was wondering whether you read something specific to her, or just about anything you were reading? For example, I am reading "Gone Girl" right now, and wondering if its appropriate to read out loud to an infant. Did you buy baby books right away?

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    1. Hi Shilpa, maybe you were thinking of this post?
      http://onehotstove.blogspot.com/2011/11/green-bean-potato-bake.html

      When babies are very young, they just enjoy the sounds of parents' voices, no matter what they are saying. So reading any book is fine that way. I myself don't like reading books-for-adults aloud (my silent reading speed is much faster than my reading aloud speed and I don't like being slowed down). I did have a few books ready for my daughter even before she was born- they actually were hand me down books from friends with older kids. Plus, children's books have a certain rhythm and cadence that I thought was comforting to my baby. But really read whatever you like, reading is the important thing.

      I must say about the particular example you used: Gone Girl. When I read the book, I thought the emotions in the book were so toxic. Reading it aloud would mean reading those mean and angry words aloud. Just a thought.

      Congrats on your baby daughter and wishing you both many happy hours cuddling and reading together.

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    2. I agree entirely about Gone Girl. It's such a violent book, and I don't mean in terms of actions, but just the language used in the book. Right now, I am reading out newspaper articles to her, for lack of better reading material. Given that her parents work in the media, it is fitting. I will buy books soon though, and trawl through your blog for reccomendations. Please do mention what you are reading to your daughter from time to time, just as you mention what you are reading. I, for one, would be very interested. Thank you for taking the time out to answer this question.

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    3. Nupur, hope you don't mind me chiming in here..

      Shilpa, we love any books by Eric Carle, Bill Martin Jr., Stella Blackstone, Karen Katz, Sandra Boynton, Roger Priddy and Dr. Seuss for the little kiddo set. These are just a drop in the bucket, there are many wonderful board books out there. We also have a few tiny board books (3x3 in.) that my son loves to look at, they are the perfect size for little hands. We have a set of "Indestructibles" books that have also been much loved (chewed on). For babies, any books with high contrast, black and white and red pictures are recommended.
      Just take a stroll around a bookstore in the kids section. They have a section with just board books and you can't go wrong with any of them. Hope this helps.

      -Anu

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    4. Thanks Nupur for spreading reading awareness (much needed in this gadgets' world) along with cooking.
      I too read to my daughter rather used to, now she reads herself. Reading to her every night has helped her loving books. She never gets bored and needs tv for entertainment.

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  20. Belated birthday wishes, Nupur! I'm kind of with you, not crazy about waffles, but I do love desi waffles! I make them with leftover idli batter: https://www.flickr.com/photos/polarmate/4832180242/
    They dry out very quickly, probably because I don't grease the waffle maker all that much. They are great hot with chutney or dunked in sambar. Medha loves Belgian waffles, which I believe are yeasted, rather like your waffles in this post. And she likes them sprinkled with walnuts and layered with bananas and lots of maple syrup.

    Hope you guys are all doing well! Hugs to Lila!

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    1. I'm going to try waffles with idli/dosa batter for sure! The waffle maker we have makes those large thick and round Belgian waffles and I do love Medha's way of eating it :)

      We're doing well, enjoying Spring produce and weather. I hope you all will come visit us soon!

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  21. Happy Birthday Nupur! I never commented, but have been reading and following recipes from your blog for a long time. I love your writing style which is simple and to the point. I agree with many readers that it is from the heart.I look forward to your reading list and also current watching list. There is also an interesting fact. You are my namesake. My pet name is Nupur. I was certain initially that you are a Bengali as it is a common Bengali name. Although I discovered otherwise later. About waffle iron-my husband is against cooking in any kind of nonstick cookware. So I searched and found only one kind of cast iron waffle iron on Amazon. I bought it and made waffles there. It is difficult to make waffles there because you have to guess whether it is done on one side before flipping it. Electric ones are much easier, but they are all non stick. But the waffles taste so much better than the frozen ones or the waffles in 'make your own waffle' in the hotel breakfast ones.
    One more thing, I still have my flip phone although my husband and the children all have smartphones.
    Nupur

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    1. Hello- it is always nice to come across a namesake :) I bet the cast iron waffles are wonderfully crisp.

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  22. Belated Happy Birthday! I totally missed wishing you in my comment on the last post :)

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  23. Happy birthday Nupur! Though I never left a comment before, I have been reading your blog and trying various recipes from the blog. I really love your style of writing and the recipes turn out to be great if I follow the proportion. Have a great year ahead!
    -Deepa.

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    1. Thank you, Deepa, I'm so glad you're enjoying my blog.

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  24. Happy Birthday, Nupur! I don't make waffles often but when I do they are with multigrain flour. Have been meaning to make yeasted ones but never seem to plan ahead when it comes to waffles. Mt favourite topping will have to be the same as V's!

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    1. Hi Anita- Yes, the yeasted ones need to be planned the night before! Occasionally we forget and then make buttermilk waffles or some such but the yeasted one are so light and tasty- worth setting a reminder :)

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  25. Happiest of birthdays! We got a waffle maker a while back and admittedly we haven't brought it out in a while, but it's always nice to whip up a quick batch of waffles on a Sunday morning.

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    1. It certainly is the perfect way to celebrate a lazy weekend morning!

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  26. Dear Nupur,
    a very, very happy birthday to you!
    I have been a reader of your blog for some years now and LOVE it. You really are an inspiration! Thank you so much for your wonderful blog entries!
    The only thing that I find mind-boggling are the measurements you use. I am from Austria, Europe, and we've never used cups. So I spend ages googling cups and trying to figure our how many grammes a cup of cornmeal, a cup of whole wheat flour or a cup of butter is.
    Other than that however I really enjoy trying out your recipes!!!
    Love, Bee

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    1. Bee- Yes, US measurements in cups and ounces are very different from metric measurements used in Europe. But frankly for cooking I love the ease of measuring in cups rather than pulling out a scale.

      Thanks for the kind words and I am so glad you enjoy my blog!!

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  27. Happy Birthday Nupur! I am so glad to see this post, as I got a waffle maker just a couple of weeks back and have been thinking about savory waffles.
    Have fun with the new iphone!

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    1. Yay- you'll have lots of fun making waffles and I bet your little guys will enjoy eating them!

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