Been a while, waffles.
As the start of university looms above like a great monstrous cloud (a more welcome one though, at that), I’ve been battling my hefty attachment to certain breakfast foods, because
I’m pretty sure I know my days in hall will mainly comprise ready-made Chinese microwave meals and Tesco convenience sandwiches. So I’m savouring the time I have left with my waffle-maker and pan, the time pockets in the mornings that give leeway to luxury.
It’s a weird thing to think about, moving to a whole new country for an extended period of time, having to assimilate once more into another set of news, yet somehow it’s all incredibly comforting, like a house that’s been waiting too long for me to knock on its door. And now that the time has come to finally leave, the emotions are amplified, nostalgia aggravating, the future a deck of cards I can only hope to play to my advantage. It feels like I’m leaving so much behind, but the anticipation is only growing stronger.
Uh so yes, the hefty attachment. Breakfast. Namely french toast, french toast, pancakes, and… waffles. All my loves deserve your love, too. In the name of all things waffly, I present to you
Crisp, buttery yeasted waffles flavoured with a punch of espresso and chocolate chunks.
If you like waffles with ridiculously crisp edges, this is for you. A little on the thinner side, so the fluff factor is slightly reduced, but the aeration thanks to the yeast yields a light and tender inside. This recipe is inspired by another recipe I put up more than a year ago, and I implore you to check it out, maybe even before giving these guys a shot.
The best part? You whack everything together the night before, so you need not labour over things like whipping egg whites or careful folding or sifting in the morning. All you need to do is chuck a few basic ingredients together in a bowl, pop it in the fridge, and the next morning you’ve got a waffle batter ready and waiting for you. It’s just a matter of heating and buttering your waffle iron, and then going through the trouble of taking out a ladle to scoop the batter and spread it on the iron faces.
Ooh, and the moment you get a pocket of gooey chocolate in a coffee-scented bite? No words, just lots of feelings and silent pleasure.
Conclusion: I love chocolate and coffee. I love waffles. Do it for the blissful marriage.
Yeast Waffles (makes 4-5 thin waffles, adapted from a previous recipe on brown butter waffles)
30g unsalted butter
125g (1 cup) all-purpose flour
1 tbsp white sugar (either granulated or castor is fine)
1 tsp fine salt
1 tsp instant yeast
1 tsp coffee grounds dissolved in 1 tbsp hot water
30g (a healthy handful) chopped dark chocolate
200ml milk (I use whole)
The night before
Melt the butter in a microwave and set aside to cool. Put your chocolate chunks in a small bowl and mix with a tablespoon of the flour. This will prevent the chunks from sinking to the bottom of the bowl after being mixed with the other ingredients.
In a bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt and yeast. Whisk in the egg, and before it’s fully incorporated (it’ll look like a groggy mess of egg-white and yellow splotches), add the milk in thirds. Add a third, whisk. Add the second third, whisk. Whisk in the melted butter and coffee. The batter will be slightly thin. If it looks too thick, add a tablespoon or two more of milk. Mix in the chocolate chunks (mixed with flour). Cover the bowl with a piece of cling film or aluminium foil and pop it in the fridge.
The morning after
Preheat your oven (this is the important step!) to 160C (320F). Remove the bowl from the fridge and turn on your waffle maker. Mine is preheated within five minutes, and turn it to a high setting. Use a small ladle or quarter-cup measurement to ladle in the batter, spreading it evenly. It helps to use a tablespoon when spreading. Follow the instructions on your own iron’s manual for heating and cooking. Mine take 5 minutes exactly to reach that perfect brown shade. Once your waffles are nicely browned, immediately remove it from the iron using a spatula and pop it into the hot oven. This is when your waffle will go from slightly soft and tender to crisp and hard on the outside. Ladle in more batter for your second waffle. The waffle will be perfectly crisp and golden after a couple minutes in the oven, but just check on them to be sure, and don’t burn them.
Serve with maple syrup, butter, fruit… And maybe more chocolate. Store any uneaten waffles in the freezer. Take out and toast whenever you like. These keep well for up to 2 weeks.