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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

waffle my world: the classic waffle part 3.

It's time for part 3 already- and this time, I made yeasted waffles.

I chose a recipe by Marion Cunningham because of its sheer popularity- even The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum has it and it's supposed to be about cake, not waffles! Many other people have also expressed their love for its yeasty complex flavour and light texture but on the other end of the spectrum, some felt that it was overly yeasty.

The batter is left to rise overnight at room temperature for at least 8 hours, and the yeast will cause the batter to rise up to triple its original volume and then collapse- with the amount of work the yeast is doing, no wonder some complain about its yeastiness. To counter that problem, I left my batter in the fridge for 24 hours. The batter doubled in volume but it did not collapse. Before making the waffles, I took it out of the fridge to warm up to room temperature. As a result, I got waffles that had a somewhat browned, toasted flavour without the yeastiness.

This is the whitest batter I've made so far. You know how waffle batters are usually a pale yellow because of the melted butter and eggs? Even with those two components, this one has barely a tinge of yellow! This means that there is hardly any eggy taste in the finished waffle- how great is that? Eggy waffles be gone!

This is also the lightest, but by no means the crispest, waffle yet. The crispy award still goes to waffle no.2, a.k.a light, crisp waffles by Pamela Anderson. In fact, this waffle is so airy, I sort of disliked it. I like light waffles, but I want them to have some substance too. You can tell by the tiny holes peeking through that this waffle barely weighed anything. It is crisp too, but only for a while. Waffles no.2 kept their texture much longer and better than this batch.

Even though the overly light texture puts me off, it's neutral non-eggy taste and toasty flavour makes it a great base to experiment with different waffle flavours. That, in my book, wins it a commendable second place. Well, so far.

Marion Cunningham's Raised Waffles

½ cup warm water
1 package (2 ¼ tsp.) dry yeast *or 1 1/8 teaspoon instant yeast
2 cups whole milk, warmed
1 stick (½ cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly *I replaced half the butter with additional milk
1 tsp. table salt
1 tsp. sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
¼ tsp. baking soda

Pour the water into a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle the yeast over the water, and let stand to dissolve for 5 minutes.

Add the milk, butter, salt, sugar, and flour, and whisk until well blended and smooth. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and let it stand overnight at room temperature. I put mine in the fridge for 24 hours, but I bet you can get away with less if you don't like yeastiness.

Preheat your waffle maker.

Just before cooking the waffles, add the eggs and baking soda, and stir to mix well. The batter will be very thin. Pour an appropriate amount of batter into your hot waffle maker and cook until your liking.

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