Let’s Eat: Liège Waffles

This post has been a long time coming, but it’s finally here today! What could possibly be worth such a long wait you ask? Well…how about the recipe for authentic liège waffles a la our earlier trip (and blog post) to Belgium? That’s what I thought.

I’ve been wishing for these ever since I had them a few weeks ago, so without any further delay: Waffles!

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You’ll need:

  • 3 1/2 cups bread flour
  • 1 packet dry active yeast
  • 3/4 cup lukewarm (100-110 degrees F) milk
  • 8 oz softened butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 generous tsp vanilla bean paste or regular vanilla extract
  • dash of cinnamon
  • 1 bag of belgian pearl sugar (available at amazon.com)

 

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I figured out why Belgian waffles are SO addictive and amazing…the drugs they put in the batter!

IMG_1543 IMG_1540A little of this stuff makes a HUGE different in all the baking I do…I cannot recommend it enough!

To make all these things turn into heavenly waffles:

  1. Add your yeast to the milk with some sugar to let it proof. When it’s foamy and ready (about ten minutes), add all the other ingredients,except the sugar!!, and mix well.
  2. Let the dough rise for approximately 30 minutes, covered with a towel and set in a warm and cozy spot.
  3. Once the dough has risen, add an entire bag of pearl sugar…this is about to get realIMG_1546
  4. Make sure your waffle iron is heated, I set mine to level 4
  5. Break the dough into roughly 3oz balls, and then pat them down before placing them in the waffle iron to cook. IMG_1551 IMG_1547
  6. They should be a nice brown color by the time you’re finished cooking (5+ minutes). Watch to make sure the sugar melts and crystallizes but does not burn!.
  7. Eat your face off and quote Shrek repeatedly. IMG_1553

They are so delicious and way better than any other waffle I’ve ever tried…I can’t recommend them enough, if you have the energy! When you wish upon a waffle, dreams really do come true assuming you have crack sugar…I mean Belgian pearl sugar.

The extra dough can also be wrapped in plastic wrap and frozen until you have a craving at a later date…you never know when the waffle urge might strike!

Bouncing around Belgium

Sorry for being AWOL the past few days–but I promise I have a good excuse, my dog ate my blog. 603832_10200112646526655_1184609543_n

In truth, Bentley had nothing to do with it and is blameless (as always). Instead, Jordan and I did quite a bit of traveling this weekend and I didn’t get a chance to sit down properly and get to work. But better late than never, here’s a general run down of our explorations.

We woke up early Friday morning, jumped in the car and sped off–literally, it is Germany after all–to Brussels. One thing I can’t get over about European road trips is how nice and easy they are to take. For example, here is a German rest stop where we grabbed lunch.

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America needs to get with this program…we had schnitzel, salad, and pommes frites before hitting the road again. I still can’t wrap my head around how nice it is to have this option when traveling in Germany.

When we got to Brussels after our lengthy travels we settled into our stylish flat, before dropping our bags in search of the best Brussels has to offer.

20140318-080502.jpgLike moules-Frites for dinner…

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Tasty belgian beers were a must

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and Waffles. Let me state, for the record, that I don’t get worked up about waffles or pancakes. They’re usually too cakey and I’d rather have poached eggs. However, these waffles are in a class all their own and are unlike anything we’ve ever had. Liège waffles have an entirely different consistency and a superior taste to anything else, and are widely available in Brussels. I’m working on figuring out how to recreate them at home so stay tuned for that experiment in later days…

20140318-080514.jpgPanoramic view of the Grand Palace  at night….so gorgeous!

After a bit more exploring, Jordan and I wandered back to our flat with the help of spritely cab driver. Saturday was meant for a tad more exploring before continuing on our way.

Which means Saturday was really just another opportunity to eat waffles. Twice.

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Part of the Grand Palace by daylight, albeit very dreary, rainy daylight.

We managed to take a walk by the Mannekin Pis

20140318-080636.jpgTrue life, this is a statue of a small figurine urinating in a fountain. It was erected around 1618 and designed by Hieronimus Duquesnoy the Elder. It is only 61cm/24in tall and has been repeatedly stolen, with this version dating back from 1965, and the original restored version kept safely under lock and key at the Maison du Roi. There are many  legends surrounding the statue, including one of a boy who put a fire out by peeing on it and another who was hung in a basket from a tree and peed on enemy troops, who then lost the battle. I kid you not.

Manneken pis also has several hundred outfits that change several times during the week, so if you get to visit him, odds are he’ll be sporting something entirely different.

After that adventure, we wandered through the Galerie de la Reine.

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Before stopping at Mary for some goodies…which I highly recommend a visit!

Finally, we made sure to pick up some beer for Jordan before packing up and heading to Cologne.

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Why did we have to rush over to Cologne you might ask? Well…Beyoncé had two concerts, one Friday and one Saturday and we were fortunate enough to have tickets!

It was easily the best show I’ve ever had the privilege of attending and I can’t begin to tell you how much ‘fangirling’ I’m guilty of committing. 20140318-080652.jpg

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She sang beautifully, perhaps even better than her recorded tracks, and put on an energetic and captivating show that flawlessly mixed in both old and new songs. If I had realized that the sound quality would actually be halfway decent on my phone, I would have recorded better/longer clips. Forgive me and enjoy these tiny samplings of her concert–and if you have a chance to go, you absolutely should!

That about sums up our weekend of adventures, but I’m deadly serious when I say the liège waffle experiment is on my to-do list, if for no other reason than my ability to walk around all the time saying: