Waffles From Scratch

Waffles are a great breakfast treat, but don't reach for the frozen ones. Your own homemade waffles can be as delicious as a restaurant's.

The Early Show's resident chef Bobby Flay showed how it's done and says his recipes are both easy and mouth-watering.


FOOD TERMINOLOGY

Waffles: A waffle is a batter cake cooked between two hot plates that are called a waffle iron. It has a distinctive grid-like appearance, the result of raised partitions on the waffle iron. Belgian waffles, which are often heaped with fresh strawberries and whipped cream, are made on special waffle makers with particularly large, deep grids. Most modern waffle irons have nonstick surfaces. Waffles are popular not only for breakfast, but for desserts, as well in parts of Europe. Savory waffles can be topped with creamed meat or vegetable mixtures. Traditional waffles in the U.S. originated from pilgrims in 1620, who obtained the method from Holland. They are usually served as a sweet breakfast food, topped with butter and various syrups.

The modern waffle has its origins in the late middle ages. Waffle irons consisted of two metal plates connected by a hinge, each plate connected to a wooden arm. Some plates had imprinted designs such as a coat-of-arms or landscape, while some had the now-familiar honeycomb/gridiron pattern. The iron was placed over a fire and would need to be flipped manually to cook both sides of the waffle. These irons were used to produce a variety of different flat, unleavened cakes (usually from a mixture of barley and oats, not the white flour used today). Some were rolled into a horn or tube, others were left flat. In many cities, waffles were sold off carts by street vendors. Judging from extant illustrations, these vendors gave people their money's worth, as the waffles in question were about the size of a small pizza, although there was a hidden cost: because of stone grinding methods, there was so much grit in flour that teeth were often worn to the gum-line by middle age.

In medieval French, the term for this pastry was "oublie" (from Latin "oblata"), sold by "oubloyeurs" in the streets of Paris and other major cities.

Japan and the UK have their own versions of the waffle. Other kinds also include Biscuit waffles, Sugar waffle, Soft waffle, Fruit waffle. Ingredients: egg yolks, hot water, sugar, grated rind of lemon, flour, baking powder, egg whites, whisked, rum.

The Belgian Waffle was introduced into North America during the 1964 New York World's Fair by its Belgian inventor: Maurice Vermersch. Observing that most Americans could not place Brussels, he decided to change the name from "Brussels Waffle" to the "Belgian Waffle".

Frozen waffles made their convenience food debut in U.S. grocery stores in 1953.
  • Polly Leider

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