During the COVID-19 pandemic with school closures and hubby working from home, I have more time to prepare breakfast for my family and enjoy with them each morning before the kids head off to remote learning. Below is one of the things I often make for my family recently.
I bought a Belgium waffle maker last year as I couldn’t resist the discounted price and I have been making yeast-based Liège Waffles and American waffles. This time I tried to make Asian-style waffles which are crispy outside but super light and fluffy inside. Unlike American waffles that are leavened by baking powder, these waffles involve beaten egg whites, the secret weapon that makes the waffles so much lighter without the use of any baking powder. The preparation is similar to making chiffon cakes. First you separate the eggs and use the yolks to make a yolk batter. Then the egg whites are whipped into a fluffy meringue and then folded into the yolk batter at a later stage. When I make waffles I usually prepare a bigger batch and then store extra ones in the refrigerator (or even in the freezer for longer storage). To serve I simply reheat them in the toaster oven. They always come out crunchy on the outside with a soft and airy interior as if they are freshly prepared.
The recipe I provide below makes about 5 thick waffles using a round Belgium waffle maker. It can be easily adapted to smaller portions by using ⅔ or even half of the recipe.
Asian-Style Waffles (No Baking Powder) 亞洲式窩夫(不含泡打粉)
Makes about 5
210 g all purpose flour
30 g cornstarch
1/2 tsp salt
300 g milk
3 large egg yolks
45 g unsalted butter, melted
30 g grapeseed oil
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste or pure vanilla extract
3 large egg whites
1/2 tsp lemon juice or white vinegar (I use Korean apple vinegar)
30 g granulated sugar (I used organic cane sugar)
Notes: The eggs I use are 50 to 55 g each without shells
Combine flours and salt into a mixing bowl and stir well. Make a well in the center then pour in the egg yolks, milk, oil, melted butter and vanilla. Whisk until incorporated.
With a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip egg whites and vinegar (to stabilize the meringue) with medium-high speed until very foamy. Gradually add sugar in batches and continue beating with medium speed until soft peaks. Beat at medium-low speed until meringue is glossy and reaches firm peaks. When you lift up the whisk, the peak will hold its shape with a small pointy tip that doesn’t flop easily.
Scoop about one third of the meringue into the yolk batter and fold with a whisk to lighten. Then scrape this back into the bowl of meringue. Fold gently and thoroughly (so you don’t deflate the meringue) with a spatula until homogeneous.
Pour a proper amount of batter onto a preheated waffle maker. Close the lid and cook according to manufacturer’s directions until golden brown. Remove carefully with a fork and repeat with remaining batter.
*The last batch may not be as fluffy as the meringue may have deflated.
Serve immediately with syrup, icing sugar, fresh fruits, ice-cream or your favorite toppings.
We serve these waffles both as breakfast and dessert.
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