Belgium Liege Waffles
When we think of Belgium waffles, we envision the large fluffy, waffle made from batter similar to pancakes. But the waffles sold on the streets of Belgium are crispy treats wrapped in paper. There’s no need for whipped cream or fruit topping. They are sweet enough just as they are.
What makes them unique? The batter is actually dough, made with yeast and when you place the dough in the waffle iron, it’s much thicker than a runny pancake batter. The other secret ingredient, and the one that makes all the difference, is pearl sugar. Mixed into the dough, the sugar pebbles caramelize, giving the waffle its crispness.
After the first time I made the Liege waffle, I never again made the kind more familiar to Americans. I don’t make them often, but when I do, it’s a “look forwarded to” treat. Yesterday was my daughter’s thirtieth birthday and I invited our family for a birthday brunch. I made scones, home fries, eggs, French toast, avocado toasts, brown sugar glazed bacon, and Liege waffles. Below is the recipe. I encourage you to try these. It’s my favorite breakfast food. I’ll warn you, they are not low fat, but indulging occasionally is one of life’s pleasures.
1 package (¼ ounce) of self-rising yeast
1/3 cup lukewarm water
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 ½ tablespoons granulated sugar
2 cups flour
1 stick of melted butter (8 tablespoons)
2 teaspoons vanilla
¾ cup of pearl sugar
Mix the yeast, salt, sugar and water in a small bowl and let it sit for 15 minutes in a warm spot.
Place the flour in a large bowl and make a well in the center. Pour the yeast mixture in the middle and mix on medium speed until blended. Do not over mix.
Add the eggs while mixing, and then slowly add the melted butter and vanilla. The batter should be thick and sticky.
Let the batter rest in a warm spot until it doubles. Fold in the pearl sugar and let the dough rest for 15 minutes.
Heat the waffle iron and spray with vegetable oil. Spoon the dough in the center of each waffle iron section until the light indicates they are done. (Approx. 3 minutes)