Search Results for: Nutella

Nutella Espresso Caramel Chocolate Brownies


Helloooo? Is anybody there? It’s me! 


Yeah.  It’s been a while huh? 

I decided that I needed to take a bit of a break from blogging.  Time to just sit back and relax.  To clear my head.  To focus on other things.  

I actually took a bit of a back seat from all things social; which is totally weird because I’m obsessed with social media and just generally being online!  

During my “downtime” I decided to finally take the plunge and start learning WordPress.  Because let’s face it – I haven’t really changed the design of Made With Pink since I started it a few years ago.  I’ve been wanting to move my blog over to WordPress for nearly three years, so I  finally decided to bite the bullet and figure out what I need to do to make the switch.  I’m hoping to have it done within the next few months.  Fingers crossed I don’t break my blog in the process! *If anyone has any pointers let me know!!*


During the last few months I really haven’t baked that much either.  I won’t bore you with the details, but I had to pack up a lot of my baking equipment for a few months.  But as usual, I continued to bake on the weekends so my husband and I would have something for dessert on Saturday nights.  About two months ago I decided it was time to develop a new brownie recipe.  I wanted something super gooey and chocolatey.  Something so good that it would take all your willpower not to devour the entire pan.  

Success!  

I swear to you that these brownies are the best you’ll ever eat.  They’re rich and fudgey, with just a hint of espresso. In fact, these were so good I made them 6 weeks in a row.  Seriously.  I’m not joking!  I love this brownie recipe because it’s super quick and easy.  No need to wait for butter to soften like you would for a cake, plus you’ll only need to use one bowl.  I also made sure that this recipe  made 4 good sized brownies.  As much as I’d love to have a tray full of brownies last me the entire week, it’s really not good for anyone to be eating them everyday.  So this recipe would be perfect for a family of 4, or two hungry adults who want to indulge 2 days in a row!

If you are one of those people who does want an entire tray of brownies lingering in your kitchen to satisfy your cravings for the week, it is pretty easy to double this recipe.

After baking these brownies a few times I decided to drizzle some leftover salted caramel sauce on them that I found in the fridge.  A mighty good addition if I do say so myself, but not crucial to the success of the recipe.  


Nutella Espresso Caramel Chocolate Brownies
Serves 4

Ingredients:

50g Butter
60g Dark Chocolate
30g Nutella
15g Cocoa Powder
1/2 tsp Espresso Powder
50g Brown Sugar
35g Castor Sugar
10g Corn Syrup or Golden Syrup
1 Large Egg
35g Flour (Plain / All Purpose)
Pinch of Salt
2 Tbsp Salted Caramel Sauce (optional)

Instructions:

1.  Pre-heat oven to 180ºC.  Line a 13cm x 18cm rectangular dish (or a 14cm x 14cm square dish) with aluminum foil and coat with non stick cooking spray. 

2. In a double boiler combine the butter, dark chocolate, Nutella, cocoa powder and espresso into a medium sized heat proof bowl (metal or glass) and heat until melted and combined. 

3.  Remove the melted chocolate and butter mixture from the heat, and stir in both sugars and the corn syrup until combined.  Add in the egg and stir quickly until the mixture becomes smooth and glossy and starts to pull away from the bowl.

4.  Gently stir in the flour and salt until smooth and combined, making sure not to over stir (no more than 40 stirs).

5.  Pour the batter into the pan and smooth the top with a spatula.  If you’ve got some salted caramel that you’d like to use, now’s the time swirl it across the top of the batter.  Bake for 22-26 minutes depending on how gooey you like your brownies.  Make sure not to over bake.   They should be soft in the centre with a few slight cracks around the edges. I like my brownies really gooey so I only bake them for 22 minutes.  

Let cool slightly and then serve while still warm in order to maintain their gooeyness, or you cal let them cool completely to make them easier to cut and handle.  Either way, their delicious!  

Enjoy!  

Speculoos Swiss Roll


Speculoos. Speculooooos! You have to admit, it’s pretty fun to sayBut if all your thinking is “speculoos what?”, then you might be more familiar with the American name – Biscoff or Biscoff Spread.  
Originally from Belgium, Speculoos biscuits are delicious little crunchy biscuits that are flavoured with a blend of caramalised sugar and a hint of spice.  Over the past few years a speculoos hyrbid has emerged in the form of a delicious spread, similar to that of peanut butter or nutella.  I first fell in love with Speculoos spread a few years ago while on holiday in Brussels, and have enjoyed encorporating it into recipes ever since.  This vanilla swiss roll with speculoos whipped cream is one of my favourites.  Speculoos has increased in popularity, and is now readily available in the UK in Waitrose stores and other specialty grocers.
I made some pretty awesome Speculoos Whoopie pies a few months ago, and I often think about them and how delicious they were.  I wanted to re-create their flavour, but opted to do so in the form of a swiss roll.  I‘d never made a swiss roll before, but I knew the flavour I was after, so I set out to create exactly what I had in mind.  The result was a delicious sponge with a light vanilla caramel flavour, and a wonderful caramalised speculoos flavoured cream filling.
 
Ingredients:  
Vanilla Sponge: 
4 Eggs 
160 grams Super-fine Golden Castor Sugar  
1 Tbsp  + 1/2 tsp Vegetable Oil 
2 Tbsp Double Cream +1/4 tsp of vinegar (combine and set aside) 
2 tsp Vanilla Extract or Vanilla Bean Paste 
110 grams Plain Flour 
14 grams Corn Flour 
1 tsp Baking Powder 
1/4 tsp Salt  
Speculoos Cream Filling: 
250 milliliters Double Cream 
1/3 Cup Speculoos Spread  
To Garnesh: 
2 Tbsp Speculoos Spread, melted

Instructions:  
1.  Preheat oven to 180ºC. Grease a 9×13 jelly-roll pan and line with parchment paper. In a large bowl, beat eggs with electric mixer until pale and yellow – about 5 full minutes. 
2.  Pour in the oil and the sugar while the mixer is still running.  Add in cream and vinegar mixture, and the vanilla extract In a separate bowl, sift together the flours, baking powder and salt. Slowly add to the liquid ingredients. Mix until well combined. 
3.  Pour batter into parchment lined pan, ensuring batter is evenly distributed. Bake for 10 – 12 minutes, or until the sponge springs back with the touch of a finger. 
4.  While the sponge is baking, lightly sprinkle a tea towel with powdered sugar to avoid the sponge from sticking. Once the sponge is done baking, immediately turn it out onto the tea towel and peel away the parchment paper.  Starting at one of the short ends, carefully roll up the sponge together with. tea towel. Set the rolled cake on a wire rack and cool completely. 
5.  To make the speculoos cream filling, combine the double cream and speculoos into a large bowl and beat on high speed with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Carefully unroll the sponge before spreading with a layer of speculoos whipped cream, stopping about 2 centimeters before the end of sponge in order to avoid cream spilling out once rolled. 
6.  Carefully roll the sponge, and place seam down on a serving platter. Place 2 tablespoons of speculoos spread in a small heat proof dish and melt in the microwave for 10 – 20 seconds.  Pour over top of your finished Swiss roll, and let set in the refrigerator before serving.  
** This Swiss roll keeps well in the fridge.  I find that it improves in flavour over night.  If you are going to chill it over night in the fridge, just make sure to carefully cover it in cling film to prevent it from drying out. (Use cocktail sticks to prevent the cling film from sticking to the Speculoos topping)

Mini Orange Cakes for Bonfire Night

Remember remember the 5th of November………..


Well, tonight is officially bonfire night in the UK, although the majority of bonfires were probably over the weeekend, there will still be quite a few going on tonight. 
I’ve made up a cute little treat for bonfire night, and best of all they can actually be cooked right in the bonfire! I had made these look like little “carved pumpkins” for Halloween, but wasn’t able to get this post up before then, but ultimately they’re best for bonfire night.
I’d first mentioned these cakes way back in the spring when I made some similar mini cakes baked in Easter eggs. I’d gotten the idea for my Easter egg cakes way back when I was a kid in Girl Guides. We’d all gather around the camp fire and hollow out our oranges before our guide leader came by to pour the cake batter into them. We’d then wrap them in foil and place them in the fire and wait patiently for them to cook before sitting around our toasty warm campfire eating a nice warm little cake.
What fun!
What you’ll need:
– Some large oranges
– Cake batter of your choice – I just used ½ a boxed mix. Vanilla or chocolate will taste the best once combined with the flavour of the orange.
– Nutella or Icing of your choice (optional)
There isn’t really a recipe for these – they’re super easy. Simply cut the top part of a large orange off to create a little lid, and then set that part aside. Next you’ll need to hollow out your orange with a spoon. I used a knife to cut down the insides of my orange in order to help separate the flesh from the peel. Then use the spoon to scoop out the fleshy bit which you can eat. To get your orange really “clean and tidy” inside, use the sharp edge of a spoon to scrape away all the left over fleshy bits from the inside of the peel. I got my oranges perfectly cleaned out so that no fleshy remains were inside, but it really doesn’t matter that much. The less orangey bits left inside, the more room for cake! I also scooped the flesh out of the tops I cut off.
Next fill the cakes about 2/3 full with your prepared cake batter. Use any left over cake batter to make some regular cupcakes. Place the little orange tops back on the oranges and wrap them rightly in foil.
Carefully place the foil covered cakes around the outer edge of your bonfire, making sure that they are surrounded by hot coals, but still easily accessible because you’ll eventually need to get them out!
Alternatively you can cook these at 180ºC (350ºF) in the oven like I did (I couldn’t have a bonfire on the patio of my flat!). I set the foil covered oranges on a cupcake pan to prevent them from rolling around my oven.
The cakes took about 20 minutes to cook in my oven, and they should take about the same in the bonfire. You can check to see if they’re done baking the same way you would a normal cake, but just unwrapping them and sticking a toothpick in to see if it comes out clean.
Once they’re baked and cooled you can take a permanent black marker and draw little faces on them like I did. If you wish, you can top them off with some icing or nutella, but they taste just as good plain.
Enjoy, and have a fabulous bonfire night!

Macaron Successes, Failures and a Giveaway!

It was about 2.5 years ago (shortly after moving to the UK)  that I was flipping through a magazine when something caught my eye.  Something magnificent that I’d never seen before.  No, it wasn’t a pair of designer shoes or a pretty dress.  It was a cookie!  But not just any cookie.  These cookies were colourful fancy little things with pretty ruffled edges.  I scoured the page to find out what they were called and where I could get them.  Macarons. I’d never heard of them before – except for the American coconut haystack kind (aka macaroons).  I immediately googled macarons to see how I could make them.  At that time only a few websites & blogs popped up that actually featured recipes for macarons, each of them explaining how finicky they were to make.  Age your egg whites, fold the batter until it flows like magma – (no more than 50 strokes), don’t make them on a humid day, let the piped macarons rest on the counter for 45 mins,  leave the oven door propped open with a wooden spoon, and only listen to smooth jazz while making them – ok, that last one is a lie, but you get the picture.  It seemed as if the odds to make these pretty little cookies were stacked against me.  Never the less a few days later I decided to bake my very first batch of macarons.  I did all of those things I mentioned above (except for the jazz), and you know what?  My macarons actually turned out pretty darn good for my first try!  They had the frilly little feet and everything!  I was thrilled with them, and gloated to myself that they really weren’t that hard to make!  Well, fast forward 2.5 years, and I’ve made dozens of batches of macarons, but sadly only about 50% of them have actually turned out well enough to even be called a macaron.  I didn’t know what I was doing wrong.  My beginners luck had run out shortly after I made my first batch, and it seemed like each batch I made was completely hit or miss – even if I used the exact same recipe as the time before.  Macarons started getting increasingly popular on the blogging and baking scene, and I was constantly reading new blog posts and trying new recipes out.  I got pretty discouraged after a while, and to be honest I probably went a good year without baking another batch of macarons – until now.  Recently I came across a blog post by Brave Tart where she described her exact recipe and method of macaron making.  What made Brave Tart’s recipe and method so different from all the others I’d come across what that none of those crazy “rules” that I mentioned above applied!  It didn’t matter if the egg whites were aged, room temperature or cold, humid days were no problem at all.  And I believed her!  Why?  Because she confirmed my thoughts all along.  You see, Brave Tart is a restaurant pastry chef who makes batches upon batches of macarons each day, and if she had to adhere to all those crazy rules ALL the time, she may only be able to produce and sell her macarons 3 days a week!  So, this past weekend I gave Brave Tart’s recipe a try.  Three trys to be exact.  Each time I managed to get at least one tray of perfect looking macarons.  Sometimes I aged the egg whites, and sometimes I used fresh cold ones. They worked each time.  I did however have a few issues, but I don’t believe they’re the fault of the recipe. 



My latest macaron baking sessions allowed me to come to the conclusion that my oven is – well basically a piece of crap.  Why?  Well, to be honest I’ve never really been a fan of my tiny UK oven – especially after discovering that some of my North American pans are too big to fit inside. But the size isn’t what annoyed me this week.  It’s the fact that my oven only has a top element – not a bottom and a top element like most of the ovens I’m used to.  This results in a lot of my baking browning on the top in order for it to become fully cooked throughout.  In fact, I’ll often have to cover whatever I’m baking with a sheet of aluminum foil to prevent it from browning as it continues to cook.  This was reflected in the 3 batches of macarons I baked over the weekend, and led me to believe that my oven may likely be the main reason why my macarons have been so hit and miss over the past couple of years.  I tinted the first batch bright pink, and I was really pleased with the way they were looking in the oven until I noticed that they were starting to brown slightly around the edges, making the colour a little uneven.  The other thing I noticed when I took them out of the oven after the recommended baking time was that the bottoms weren’t nice smooth (and lets face it – we all want nice smooth bottoms don’t we!)  Instead my macarons had slightly moist and sticky bottoms – a result of there being no direct heat underneath my macarons.  I came to this conclusion after reading this article from Syrup and Tang that explains the differences between the 4 main types of ovens & their heating elements.  The article stated “If you have a crappy electric oven with an element just at the top (type D), abandon much hope of easy macaron making without a serious oven stone of some sort to store heat in the lower part of the oven.”  That explains a lot!  As I mentioned before, my oven is fan assisted with the only heating element located at the top.  I’ve tested the temperature regulation of my oven before using a thermometer, and although it does reach the exact temperature I set the oven to, the temperature will vary by about 10ºC-15ºC throughout the duration of the baking time. Not good!  Basically thanks to the Syrup and Tang article I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ll need to create a heat source at the bottom of my oven using my pizza stone.  I haven’t had a chance to try that yet, but I definitely will sometime soon!

Anyways, lets get back to my macarons! Although all 3 batches of my macarons turned out, I was most pleased with the look of my final batch.  In order to avoid my macarons from noticeably discolouring I opted to leave them au-natural.  I made a plain vanilla flavoured macaron and filled them with Speculoos (a subtle gingerbread flavoured spread similar to peanut butter).  I also had a few extra Speculoos cookies laying around which I crumbled and sprinkled on top of the macaron shells before baking them.  These were so so good!  And thanks to Brave Tart’s recipe they were also so so easy to bake!  For this particular batch I opted not to age my egg whites or bring them to room temperature.  I just used cold ones straight from the fridge.  Although I did get those pretty little feet around the edges of all my macarons, I do think that the best feet were achieved in my first batch (the ones that discoloured & that I ate before taking any real photos) when I used egg whites that were aged for 2 days at room temperature. 



Vanilla & Speculoos French Macarons
Slightly adapted from Brave Tart

4 ounces (115g) Almond flour, or whatever nut you like
8 ounces (230g) Powdered sugar
5 ounces 
(144g) Egg whites , temperature and age not important!
2 1/2 ounces (72g) Sugar
The scrapings of 1 vanilla bean or 2 tsp vanilla extract (I used vanilla bean paste)
1/2 tsp (2g) Salt

1 Belgian Speculoos cookie – crushed up

Belgian Speculoos Spread (Peanut butter or Nutella would also go well)

Instructions:

1. Preheat the oven to 300° and have ready a large (18”) pastry bag, fitted with a plain circle tip, along with two sheet pans lined with parchment paper.

2.  Process the almond flour and powdered sugar in a food processor for a minute or two in order to get rid of any little almond chunks.   Set aside.

3.  In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the egg whites, sugar, vanilla bean (not the extract), and salt and turn the mixer to medium (4 on a Kitchen Aid). Whip for 3 minutes. They will not seem especially foamy at that point.  

Increase the speed to medium-high (7 on a Kitchen Aid) and whip another 3 minutes, then crank the speed to 8 for go another 3 minutes.  

At that point, turn the mixer off and add in any extracts/flavor/color and whip for a final minute on the highest speed, just to show it who’s boss (and to evenly distribute the color/flavor).  At the end of this minute, you should have a very stiff, dry meringue.

When you remove the whisk attachment, there will be a big clump of meringue in the center, just knock the whisk against the bowl to free it. If the meringue has not become stiff enough to clump inside the whisk, continue beating for another minute, or until it does so.

4.  Now dump in the dry ingredients all at once and fold them in with a rubber spatula. Use both a folding motion (to incorporate the dry ingredients) and a pressing motion, to deflate the meringue against the side of the bowl.

First timers: the dry ingredients/meringue will look hopelessly incompatible. After about 25 turns (or folds or however you want to call “a single stroke of mixing”) the mixture will still have a quite lumpy and stiff texture. Another 15 strokes will see you to “just about right.” Keep in mind that macaronage is about deflating the whites, so don’t feel like you have to treat them oh-so-carefully. You want to knock the air out of them.

Undermixed macaron batter: quite stiff. If you spoon some out and drop it back into the mix, it will just sit there and never incorporate. Do this test before bagging your batter and save yourself the trouble of baking of undermixed macarons!

Overmixed macaron batter: has a runny, pancake batter-like texture. It will ooze continuously, making it impossible to pipe into pretty circles. Um, try not to reach that point.

You can evaluate your batter one stroke at a time, no rush.  Essentially, the macaron batter needs enough thickness that it will mound up on itself, but enough fluidity that after 20 seconds, it will melt back down. I’ve heard people describe this consistency as lava-like, or molten, and that’s pretty apt.

5.  Transfer about half the batter to a piping bag. (When your bag is too full, the pressure causes the batter to rush out in a way that’s difficult to control, making for sloppy macarons.)  Pipe the batter into the pre-traced circles on the baking sheet. Stop piping just shy of the borders of the circle, as the batter will continue to spread just a bit.  After piping your macarons, take hold of the sheet pan and it hard against your counter. Rotate the pan ninety degrees and rap two more times. This will dislodge any large air bubbles that might cause your macarons to crack.  Sprinkle the tops with the crushed Speculoos cookies.  

Bake for about 18 minutes, or until you can cleanly peel the parchment paper away from a macaron. If, when you try to pick up a macaron, the top comes off in your hand, it’s not done.  Once the macarons have baked, cool thoroughly on the pans, before peeling the cooled macarons from the parchment. Use a metal spatula if necessary.

6.  To fill your macarons take a large dollop of  Speculoos and carefully smooth it on the bottom of a macaron before sandwiching another macaron of similar size and shape on top to create the finished macaron.  

Macarons, against all pastry traditions, actually get better with age. The shells soften and become more chewy, mingling with the flavor of the buttercream too. So, while of course you can eat them right away, don’t hesitate to store them refrigerated for up to a week. If at all possible, set them out at room temperature for a few hours before consuming, because cold buttercream is kinda gross.


I’m so excited that I found this recipe, and Brave Tart herself has been wonderful about getting back to my tweets and emails full of questions!  I can’t wait to make these again using different flavours, fillings and colours.  Next time I’ll use the pizza stone as a bottom heat source and will let you know whether or not its successful.


And now onto something really exciting!  Everyone knows that the key to making a good macaron is a good kitchen scale, so I was delighted when lovely folks over at Salter UK provided me with a beautiful new MyScale kitchen scale to test out.  I decided that making these macarons would be the perfect opportunity for me to try it out.  The scale is definitely the prettiest kitchen scale I’ve ever seen, and it’s also pretty cool because you can customise the pattern on it to whatever you like!



The Salter MyScale Personalised scale is customisable allowing you to change the display image to suit your tastes and kitchen decor.  It comes with 2 ready made designs – a pastel polka dot background and  a beautiful silvery grey damask pattern that I LOVE!  But if you don’t like either of those patterns then the really cool thing is that you can upload and print out your own design using a picture of your choice by visiting the MyScale website.



The digital display is back-lite which makes it easy to read, and the buttons are really sensitive to the touch, so there’s no need to push down hard on them in order to reset it or change the measuring units.  (I had to do this with my old scale and it was a pain!)  You can easily switch from grams to ounces and milliliters to fluid ounces at the touch of a button, so there’s no need for measuring cups.  The scale turns off automatically after a few minutes, but instead of the digital display turning completely blank, it reverts to a clock!  The scale is also wall mountable so that you can use it as a pretty piece of art and a clock when you’re done baking in order to save valuable counter top space!  See – told you it was pretty cool!




Now here’s the best part!  Salter UK has kindly provided me with a 2nd MyScale to giveaway to one of my readers!   To enter all you have to do is leave a comment below telling me what design you would choose to use on your MyScale.  Additional entries can be earned by doing the following:

  • Become a follower of Made With Pink using Google Friend Connect
  • Become a fan of Made With Pink on Facebook 
  • Follow Made With Pink on Twitter and tweet the following message:  I’ve just entered to win a customisable #Salter_MyScale from @Made_With_Pink and you can too! Visit http://tiny.cc/nehz9
Links to all of the above are in the right hand column.  Maximum of 4 entries per person.  The winning comment will be chosen at random
You can also follow Salter UK on Twitter here: @SalterUK and as well as on Facebook
Open to UK residents only.  Contest closes at 11:59pm Sunday May 29th.  Winner will be announced the week of May 30th.  

*** Just a reminder that you MUST leave a comment below in order to be entered into the prize draw, otherwise I have no way of keeping track of who tweeted, followed etc.  If you make a comment anonymously then please leave an email address so I can contact you if you win. You should leave a separate comment for each of the 3 things listed above if you want to be entered more than once.  I will be using random.org to choose a number from all of the comments listed below in order to determine the winner. *** 


Alternately if you can’t wait to find out if you’ve won the MyScale you can purchase it via Amazon here:   


Authentic Belgian Waffles

Photo courtesy of Nancy Brown


Ok, I have a confession to make.  Even though I was really excited about the Royal Wedding and chose to bake a few things to help celebrate it, I wasn’t even in the country to watch it!   Why?  Because I had booked a 3 day trip to Brussels instead!  In hindsight I should have booked my Brussels trip to leave a day earlier so I could be back on UK soil to watch and celebrate the Royal Wedding live with everyone else, but I choose to use my Airmiles for the flights in order to fly for free, so flight availability was a bit tight.  Instead, I recorded the Royal Wedding and watched it on Friday evening when we got home.  Didn’t Kate look amazing?  And did you see their cake?? 

It turns out that we went to Brussels at the perfect time.  The weather was almost perfect (except for a torrential downpour during our day trip to Brugge – but that only lasted half an hour before the sun popped out again), there were minimal crowds, and the food was delicious. But the best thing of all were the waffles!  Oooh the waffles!  I’d always thought Belgian Waffles were just a larger thicker waffle with whipped cream & berries on top – nothing really different than a regular waffle, but boy was I wrong!  The waffles that we were eating in Belgium weren’t like anything I’d ever had before. They were crispy and caramelised around the edges, and the actual waffle was chewy and yeasty and full of vanilla flavour.  As far as toppings go, we had a choice from the simple yet always delicious Nutella, or the Belgian specialty Specaloos to strawberries piled high with whipped cream.  I opted for Nutella, because after seeing the ridiculously tiny fork they give you to eat your waffle with, there was NO way I could manage eating one covered in strawberries and whipped cream.  After biting into my first Belgian Waffle I just knew I had to recreate them at home.  After getting back to our hotel room and quickly googling an authentic Belgian waffle recipe I discovered that the waffles I’d fallen in love with were actually called Leige Waffles or “Gaufres de Leige” in French – but for the simplicities sake I’m just going to continue calling them Belgian waffles ok?


See those silly little forks!

The main differences between Belgian Waffles (aka Leige Waffles) is that they use yeast as a rising agent in them, and the batter is more like a very sticky dough rather than a runny batter like North American waffles are.  They also had something completely different in them that resulted in their caramelised edges – pearl sugar!  I’d never seen or heard of pearl sugar before, and instead of looking like little pearls it actually looked more like white the white little rocks you’d find in a fancy planter or walkway.  I did manage to find some pearl sugar in a Belgian grocery store.  


I’ve read that it can be rather hard to find outside of Belgium, but crushed up sugar cubes can be used in place of of pearl sugar if you can’t find it.  The recipe I used called for 1 cup of pearl sugar, but after making the waffles I would suggest reducing that amount down to 1/2 a cup.  I thought the pearl sugar would have melted while the waffles were cooking in the iron, but most of it didn’t which did result in nice little crunchy bits in the waffles, but I thought 1 cup of pearl sugar was just too much.  I opted to top my waffle off with Nutella (my favourite), even though I did have some other specialty Belgian toppings that I brought back as well.  The waffles were delicious, and very very similar to the waffles we had in Brussels.



Belgian Waffles (aka Leige Waffles)
Adapted from Food.com

Ingredients:
1 (1/4 ounce or 6g) package yeast
1/3 Cup (80ml) Lukewarm Water
1 1/2 Tbs Sugar
1/8 tsp Salt
2 Cups (250g) Flour
2 tsp Vanilla Extract or Vanilla Bean Paste
3 eggs
1 Cup (225g) Softened Butter
1/2 Cup (approx 1-2 handfuls) Pearl Sugar or Crushed Sugar Cubes

Instructions:
1.  Mix yeast, water, sugar and salt, and let develop for 15 minutes.
2.  Place flour into a large bowl and make a well in the center.  Pour in yeast mixture and vanilla and begin to knead.  Continue to knead while adding the eggs one at a time, along with approx 2-3 Tbsp of the soft butter at a time.  Make sure the dough is mixed well.
3.  Leave the dough in a warm spot to rise in the bowl until doubled – approx 1.5 – 2 hours.
4.  Gently mix the pearl sugar into the dough, and let rest for 15 minutes.  Heat waffle iron.


5.  Place about 1/3 cup of the waffle dough into the middle of your hot waffle iron and spread out slightly with a fork or spatula.  Cook the waffles on low heat for 3-5 minutes, until waffles lightly brown on top.

My waffle iron – sorry it had too many crumbs to take a photo of the inside!

6.  Serve the waffles warm with your choice of topping such as Nutella, Fruit, Whipped Cream, Specaloos, etc.



There’s that tiny fork again!

I don’t think I could live without my waffle iron.  Thanks to some good friends back in Canada, it was one of the first appliances we got when we moved to the UK as we got it for a wedding gift.  Waffle irons aren’t nearly as common here in the UK as they are in North America, so finding a waffle iron in physical store can be kind of hard. Often if a store does carry waffle irons in stock, they will only have 1 or 2 brands or designs.  The waffle iron I have is no longer available, but if you’re looking to purchase one I’d recommend the one below.