Hello from Blaine, WA! Which, in case you haven’t heard of it (I hadn’t before this summer), is REALLY freaking close to Canada. That’s all I’ve got on Blaine so far and potentially all I’ll leave with because I came just for a night to see a childhood friend from back home get married. I drove up from Seattle yesterday with my girl Steph (also from Alabama) and we’re headed down to Portland in the morning. This is my first time visiting Oregon and Washington, except for a night stopover in Spokane, so I am walking around completely googly-eyed. The PNW is heaven. Seattle had intensely sunny and clear skies while I was there and gah, please don’t make me go home!
Steph is a serious foodie and locavore, so we have been eating our way around every town we’ve stopped in since I arrived, and I feel like I’ve already promised myself 27 times or more that I’ll make this dish or that cocktail IMMEDIATELY when I get home. For example, a perfectly-spiced Bloody Mary with a slider as garnish, guys. As. Garnish. It was beyond. I may or may not be employing The Secret at this moment to ensure that at least a few of these get made.
However, at this very moment, I have a waffle recipe for you pretty much apropos of nothing. But please don’t let the failed lede of this story discourage you from making these waffles, ok? Decadent Bloody Mary’s with cheeseburger lagniappes are coming your way soon, I promise. [The Secret again!] And these waffles are out-of-control delicious. I made a batch of them last weekend and fell in love all over again, just like I've done every few weeks since my mom gifted me a waffle maker for my birthday in February (thanks mama!). They are so light and pliable with the faintest crispy exterior. They remind me of funnel cake, especially since I eat mine with a generous layer of powered sugar. Of course, they’re equally good with maple syrup (or chocolate sauce and whipped cream because you gotta DO YOU, boo, and sometimes that requires chocolate and whipped cream). If you’re looking for a yeasted waffle recipe, this is the one in my book. Alright alright, gotta go fancied up for the wedding. Peace out!
Raised Waffles, via Genius Recipes, adapted from Marion Cunningham
Makes about 8 waffles
1/2 cup warm water
1 packet (1/4 ounce, 7 grams or 2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry or instant yeast
2 cups milk, warmed
1 stick (4 ounces or 115 grams) unsalted butter, melted and cooled to lukewarm
1 teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
2 cups (250 grams) all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
Non-stick spray or butter for greasing the waffle iron
Start with a large mixing bowl, larger than the one you *think* you’ll need because the batter will more than double (trust me). Put the ½ cup warm water in the mixing bowl, and then sprinkle in the yeast. Set aside until the yeast is dissolved and starting to foam, about 5 minutes. [Note: I almost always instant yeast because that’s generally what I have on hand in my fridge. It foams immediately, but I go ahead and let it sit for 5 minutes anyway.]
Add in the milk, melted butter, salt, sugar, flour, and whisk until combined. Cover with plastic wrap and let it stand at room temperature overnight. [This recipe is somewhat infamous for suggesting that you leave the batter, which is half milk at this point, on the the counter over night. The weather where I live in San Francisco is always chilly enough - as in, we don’t have or need an A/C - that this prospect didn’t bother me even a little. But if I lived in say, New Orleans, or anyplace where the temp in the kitchen runs hot, I would probably let the batter rest in the fridge. It might be sliightly less nuanced in flavor after a rest in the fridge, but better safe than sorry if it’s a concern.]
Just before cooking, mix in the eggs and baking soda. Heat up your waffle iron and coat it with non-stick spray or butter. Pour ¼ cup batter onto iron, let set for 30 seconds. Lower the lid and cook until golden and crisp, 4 to 5 minutes. Repeat with remaining batter. Serve with maple syrup and butter.