>Liege Waffles

These are the ultimate of all ultimate of all waffles.

Do you hear? ULTIMATE.

It doesn’t get better than this. It simply isn’t possible.

These waffles are crunchy on the outside. Yes, crunchy. They are toffee-like and caramelized due to the secret ingredient: pearl sugar. They have little pockets of air inside. They are flaky and buttery and soft through the middle. They pull apart like brioche or croissants. Yes, croissants. Think of these as croissant waffles. Kind of.

These are traditional Belgian waffles. Liege is a city in Belgium, where these are famous and commonly sold by street vendors. I want to go to Belgium just for these. And, well, maybe for the chocolate.

When I finished high school I worked a job in retail in the city for a few months before I went travelling. Right near my work, was a Frenchman with a Liege waffle stand.

I fell in love.

He sold the waffles for $2 to begin with, and you could have any topping you like, from icing sugar to Nutella and whipped cream. I like them with icing sugar best.

I used to eat those Liege waffles for lunch.

They are much more expensive now, and he sells baguettes as well, but my love for Liege waffles remains. So not long ago, I went on a hunt for a waffle maker.

And in Australia, where waffles aren’t really a big deal, it was difficult. It took me forever to find a waffle maker that had square plates (not round) so I could make Liege waffles.

Then, when I was making these waffles you see here one morning for brunch with a girlfriend, my waffle maker stopped working. That’s right. It broke. Mid waffle-making. The little light just turned off and Mr Waffle Maker died. Disaster.

So I cooked the rest of the dough in the jaffle maker. FAIL. It was raw in the middle. Don’t try this at home.

I printed this recipe out ages ago and can’t remember where it came from. I’ll do some hunting and get a link up ASAP.

These waffles are made with yeast and the dough requires some growing time. If you want to make them for breakfast, make the dough the night before and refrigerate it, covered overnight. It will slowly grow in the fridge and be ready for you to cook in the morning.

1 packet of dry yeast (7g, 1/4oz)
1/3 cup lukewarm water
1 1/2 tbsp white sugar
1/8 tsp salt
2 cups plain flour
3 eggs
220g unsalted butter, softened (1 cup)
1 cup of pearl sugar

This is pearl sugar.

It is made in Belgium, and is kind of just clumps of sugar. It is hard to find, so you could always just roughly crush up some sugar cubes to use instead. I have in the past and it worked just fine.

Mix the dry yeast, water, sugar and salt together in a small bowl and set aside for about 15 minutes to let the mixture develop.

Place the flour into a large bowl or into the bowl of your electric mixer fitted with a dough hook. Make a well in the flour and pour in the yeast mixture. Begin to knead.

Still kneading, add the eggs, one at a time. Then add the butter about 2 tablespoons at a time, mixing until each addition is incorporated. The final dough will look like a mixture between cake batter and bread dough.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise until it doubles in size.

Gently mix in the pearl sugar and let it rest for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, heat your waffle iron.

Once the waffle iron is hot and the dough rested, scoop a couple of tablespoons of dough onto each waffle plate. I used an overfilled ice cream scoop.

Look at all that golden, melted, caramelized pearl sugar.

Cook the waffles for about 5 minutes, until golden brown, crunchy and caramelized. Pull one apart and see how amazing it is inside.

Serve warm with a dusting of icing sugar. Makes about 12 medium-sized waffles.

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Filed under Breakfast, Pancakes & Waffles

7 responses to “>Liege Waffles

  1. Katie Stearns

    these look delicious!

  2. I love thick waffles, and brioche…the fact that you’ve managed to combine the two is both dangerous (only so far as being ‘healthy’ is concerned), and brilliant! They look amazing! :D
    (I’m sorry about your waffle maker.)

    • Thanks Valerie! They are amazing and I’m sad about my waffle maker too because I can’t make them again (but maybe that’s better as far as my health is concerned!)

  3. Pingback: >Little Strawberry Pies | Butter

  4. Emily

    I love the Degraves St Waffle Man! thanks for the recipe, I can’t wait to try it out myself

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