Just about every day this week we have been experiencing what is known as a freezing fog. It is very interesting and somewhat dreamlike. It is basically a fog during low (freezing) temperatures that leave a frost upon what it comes in contact with. It makes the grass and bushes seem like they are shimmering and all the cars are left with a sheet of frost on them. Making us scrap our windows on the car in order to get our day started. I have seen fog before, but never like this. Driving on any of the bridges you cannot really see beyond two cars ahead of you and looking at downtown is as though someone took an eraser and tried to remove all the tall building.The sun rises and peeks though it all seems so surreal. It has made me feel like I am in the midst of a science fiction movie.
Waking up this morning I was not about to face the cold temperatures yet again and walk our way through another freezing fog. I really just wanted to stay warm under the covers and snuggle with the pups – oh, and Brian too! I was thinking, what would make this morning bearable? What would inspire me to get out of bed? Waffles???
Yes, Waffles! Any waffle is good, but a great waffle is awesome. In my opinion an “awesome” waffle is a Belgium one. When they are made correctly they are light in texture with a real crisp exterior. A Belgium Waffle is made with yeast as opposed to a leavener like baking powder. The eggs in these waffles are separated and you whip the whites and fold them into the batter in the end; a very crucial step in making the waffles light. The thought of them was making my mouth water! I asked Brian if he would like some, and if so is there any flavor he would prefer. He suggested chocolate chip – a man after my own heart! I finally was out of bed. Whipping up some Chocolate Chip Belgium Waffles and I was ready to start my day. Freezing fog, or whatever the weather had in store for us.
Belgium Waffles with Chocolate Chips (Makes about 12)
2 ½ cups of milk
2 ¼ tsp yeast
½ cup sugar
1 ½ tsp salt
1 ½ sticks of butter
3 eggs, separated
1 tbsp of vanilla extract
2 2/3 cup of AP flour
1 1/3 cup of white whole wheat flour
1 cup of bittersweet chocolate chips
Butter, at room temperature for serving
Real Maple Syrup, for serving
First, warm ¼ cup of milk and pour it over your yeast in a large bowl. Stir it a bit and let it foam. To this add your yolks, sugar, salt, vanilla, and butter. Whisk it all together until it is smooth.
Next, in the bowl of an electric mixer place your egg whites and whip on high speed until you have a stiff peak and set aside.
Then, add your flours to the bowl of your yolks and sugar mixture. Whisk it well and then pour the remainder of your milk over it all and whisk it well. You want to get it as smooth as possible, but a few small lumps are fine. With a rubber spatula fold in your whipped egg whites. By folding you will keep the batter light without collapsing the whites. You want to fold it all until it is a smooth looking batter. When whites are incorporated you can ten add in your chocolate chips and stir until they are incorporated.
Finally, with a waffle iron warm and ready pour a bit of your batter onto it and close. Since each waffle iron is different it is at this point that you will need to follow the manufactures instructions. When your waffles are done, carefully remove them from the iron and place them on a plate to serve. Serve with butter and real maple syrup and you will have perfection.