Mmm...imagine yourself walking down on the tiny street of Belgium, enjoying a sunny summer day, and at some point, you find yourself following the amazing smell of waffles :) That's how I find myself every time I eat those waffles, it's almost like traveling in time but at home sipping your coffee. This recipe is making the best ever yeast waffles that are completely plant-based and super fluffy.
As usual find below some information about waffles and a delicious vegan recipe - what a combo, right?
In ancient times the Greeks cooked flat cakes, called obelios, between hot metal plates. As they were spread throughout medieval Europe, the cake mix, a mixture of flour, water or milk, and often eggs, became known as wafers and were also cooked over an open fire between iron plates with long handles.
Detail of a Belgian moule à oublie
Waffles are preceded, in the early Middle Ages, around the period of the 9th–10th centuries, with the simultaneous emergence of fer à hosties / hostieijzers (communion wafer irons) and moule à oublies (wafer irons). While the communion wafer irons typically depicted imagery of Jesus and his crucifixion, the moule à oublies featured more trivial Biblical scenes or simple, emblematic designs. The format of the iron itself was almost always round and considerably larger than those used for communion.
The oublie was, in its basic form, composed only of grain flour and water – just as was the communion wafer. It took until the 11th century, as a product of The Crusades bringing new culinary ingredients to Western Europe, for flavorings such as orange blossom water to be added to the oublies; however, locally sourced honey and other flavorings may have already been in use before that time.
Oublies, not formally named as such until ca. 1200, spread throughout northwestern continental Europe, eventually leading to the formation of the oublieurs guild in 1270. These oublieurs/obloyers were responsible for not only producing the oublies but also for a number of other contemporaneous and subsequent pâtisseries légères (light pastries), including the waffles that were soon to arise.
A food van selling waffles in Brussels
Waffles remained widely popular in Europe for the first half of the 19th century, despite the 1806 British Atlantic naval blockade that greatly inflated the price of sugar. This coincided with the commercial production of beet sugar in continental Europe, which, in a matter of decades, had brought the price down to historical lows. Within the transitional period from cane to beet sugar, Florian Dacher formalized a recipe for the Brussels Waffle, the predecessor to American "Belgian" waffles, recording the recipe in 1842/43. Stroopwafels (Dutch syrup waffles), too, rose to prominence in the Netherlands by the middle of the century. However, by the second half of the 1800s, inexpensive beet sugar became widely available, and a wide range of pastries, candies, and chocolates were now accessible to the middle class, as never before; waffles' popularity declined rapidly.
By the early 20th century, waffle recipes became rare in recipe books, and only 29 professional waffle craftsmen, the oublieurs, remained in Paris. Waffles were shifting from a predominantly street-vendor-based product to an increasingly homemade product, aided by the 1918 introduction of GE's first electric commercial waffle maker. By the mid-1930s, dry pancake/waffle mix had been marketed by a number of companies, including Aunt Jemima, Bisquick, and a team of three brothers from San Jose, Calif. – the Dorcas. It is the Dorcas who would go on to innovate commercial production of frozen waffles, which they began selling under the name "Eggo" in 1953. Manufacturers are now testing the production of waffles with potato starch, which increases the stability of the waffle and protects them from sticking to the iron.
Belgian-style waffles were showcased at Expo 58 in Brussels. Another Belgian introduced Belgian-style waffles to the United States at the 1962 Seattle World's Fair, but only really took hold at the 1964 New York World's Fair, when another Belgian entrepreneur introduced his "Bel-Gem" waffles. In practice, contemporary American "Belgian waffles" are actually a hybrid of pre-existing American waffle types and ingredients and some attributes of the Belgian model.
Even as most of the original recipes have faded from use, a number of the 18th and 19th-century varieties can still be easily found throughout Northern Europe, where they were first developed.
And if you would like to know more about varieties of waffles - click here (as they are way too many :)
So let's jump to the recipe!
Prep: 20 min
Cook time: 20 min
Servings: 6 pieces
Calories per serving: 354 kcal
Find the recipe & nutrition facts below :
2 cups of all-purpose flour (250gr.) + 1 tbsp
2 cups of unsweetened soy milk (480gr.)
1/2 cup of any sweetener (better works with sugar) (100gr.) + 1 tbsp
4 tablespoons of vegetable oil (80gr.)
1 package of active dry yeast (7gr.)
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
10 drops of orange essence (optional but good)
10 drops of almond essence (optional but good)
1 pinch of salt
Step 1: Place 1 cup of warm(not hot) milk in a medium bowl, add 1 tbsp of flour and sugar, then add a pack of dry yeast and mix together. Set aside for 10 minutes.
Step 2: Grease the waffle iron with a drop of vegetable oil and turn it on
Step 3: Mix the flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl
Step 4: Add the rest of soy milk, vegetable oil, yeast mixture, and vanilla extract + orange and almond essence to the dry ingredients.
Step 5: Whisk the mixture until it forms into a smooth batter. Set aside to rest for at least 5 minutes.
Step 6: Pour the batter into the waffle iron according to its instructions.
These waffles came out perfectly crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside.