Belgian Waffle

When you think about favorite desserts, a few things come to mind – fruits, ice cream, and waffles. Belgium’s most famous contribution to food are waffles, and they have been around in history since the Middle Ages. A waffle is a cake made out of dough or batter than is cooked in a waffle iron to give it a distinctive check-patterned impressions.

The history of the Belgian waffle started in the Middle Ages as waffles. Initially, they were sold as unleavened crisp cakes baked in a wafer iron. In that period, they were made out of a mix of barley and oats. The waffle iron was made out of two metal plates that are connected by a hinge and an arm attached to a wooden handle. The waffle iron was put over a fire, and flipped like a pancake to cook both sides of the waffle.

Waffle vendors were allowed to sell waffles outside of churches during special celebrations and on the feast days of saints. It is said in many history books that King Charles IX of France ruled that waffle vendors had to set up their stalls at least 12 feet (4 meters) away from each other as eating waffles was so popular.

Did you know that there are two different types of waffles? They are the Brussels waffle and a Liege waffle. Around the world, the Brussels waffle is more well known as the Belgian waffle. It was first introduced into America at the 1964 World’s Fair in New York by Maurice Vermersch. He introduced it into the US market as the “Belgian waffle” because most Americans did not know where Brussels was. Brussels waffles are usually served dusted with confectioner’s sugar or topped with chocolate, soft fruits, or whipped cream.

Liege waffles are different to Brussels waffles as they are denser, chewier, sweeter, and richer. They were made in 18th century history by the Chef of the Prince-Bishop of Liege. Unlike the Brussels waffle, the Liege waffle was adapted from brioche bread dough. It features pearl sugar chunks which caramelize on the waffle’s exterior when it is baked. Surprisingly, Liege waffles are the most common type of waffles available in Belgium. They come in 3 different flavors – plain, vanilla, and cinnamon.

If you are wondering how to make your own waffle recipe mix, here is a recipe for the famous Brussels waffle.

Brussels Waffle Recipe
2.5 oz. Active dry yeast
¼ milk
3 egg yolks
2 ¾ cups of warm milk (110 F/45C)
¾ cup of butter, melted and cooled
½ cup of white sugar
1 ½ tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 cups plain flour
3 egg whites

Dissolve ¼ cup of warm milk in a small bowl. Let it stand for 10 minutes.

Whisk together egg yolks, ¼ cup of warm milk, and melted butter in a large bowl. Mix in the yeast, salt, sugar, and vanilla before mixing in the flour and the remaining 2 ½ cups of milk alternately. Whisk the egg whites until soft peaks are formed before folding it into the batter. Tightly wrap the bowl with plastic wrap and place it in a warm area for about an hour until it has doubled in volume.

Get the waffle iron out and preheat it. Brush the insides of the waffle maker with oil before putting ½ cup of oil onto the middle of the iron. Close the lid and start baking the waffles until steam has stopped coming out from the waffle maker and the waffles are golden brown in color.

There are about 508 calories per serving in this recipe.

Or if you learn how to make the most popular waffles in Belgium, try the recipe below:

Liege Waffle Recipe
2.5 oz. Active dry yeast
1 ½ tbs white sugar
¾ cup milk, lukewarm
3 eggs
1 cup butter, melted
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups flour
½ tsp salt
1 ½ cups of pearl sugar

In a small bowl, sprinkle white sugar and the yeast over warm milk. Let it stand until the yeast starts to soften and begins to create a creamy foam. This should take about 15 minutes.

Mix the eggs,vanilla extract, and melted butter into the yeast mix until it has been evenly blended. Stir both the flour and salt together in a large bowl. Make a well and pour the egg mixture in. Stir the flour mix until it forms a soft dough. Cover the bowl with a light cloth and leave it in a warm place to let it rise double the original volume. This should take about 30 minutes. After this, gently stir in the pearl sugar.

Preheat the waffle maker before putting dough the size of a single playing card on it. It will take about 2 minutes to cook until it is crisp and golden brown.

If you are wondering what the amount of calories that are in the Liege waffle, it is about 458 calories per serving. That is 50 calories less than regular Brussels waffles!

Belgian waffle    Belgian waffle

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5 Comments
  1. marry heykens says:

    Chocolade goodness, niam niam love it

  2. Doug says:

    The 25 oz. of yeast seems a bit excessive!

  3. linda says:

    25 0z. of yeast is clearly wrong. Perhap 2.5 oz.

  4. admin says:

    Doug, Linda, thanks a lot for your comments. Fixed. :-)

  5. Mimi Bouchee says:

    Interesting, all I hear about Belgian Waffles is that they were introduced at the 1964 World’s Fair in New York. I enjoyed them at the SEATTLE WORLD’S FAIR in 1962!

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