The Famous Waffles

A month ago, this was just a waffle recipe. But like many things in this strange new normal, it’s suddenly something else…

Before we were all quarantined, most mornings, my two teenagers were out the door within 12 minutes of waking up. If I got them to eat something it was by begging them to just grab this granola bar! or this apple! while they shoved textbooks into their backpacks and rushed out, feet half into shoes, flattening the heels of their sneakers. If there’s anything good I can say about what’s going on right now, it’s that we are able to have a civilized breakfast. One of my daughters saunters downstairs at 9:00 and asks if we can have crêpes or waffles or pancakes, while the other is already pouring herself a cup of coffee before heading to history class (read: the laptop upstairs in her bedroom).

And here’s the thing. I’m only too happy to oblige! Because guess what else homemade waffles are right now besides breakfast? They are comfort and control, a feeling that lasts about as long as it takes to finish my coffee, or at least until I log on to twitter.

The waffle recipe also happens to be famous, and, of course, delicious. It’s from Marion Cunningham (of Fannie Farmer fame) and requires an overnight rise. The night before you want to make them, you mix a few of the ingredients with yeast, and in the morning, you wake to a batter that is three times the size. (In that way, you might also call the recipe a Project for Kids.) I’ve been meaning to make them forever, and now I’m not sure why I waited so long. They are crispy on the outside, almost custardy in the middle, and have a special savory-ness that will make you swear off the box mix forever. Or at least until our lives go back to normal.

Marion Cunningham’s Overnight Raised Waffles
This recipe makes 8-10 waffles. They’re so delicious, you should make enough for each eater to have at least two.

1 (1/4-ounce) envelope active dry yeast
2 cups milk, warmed
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

Add 1/2 cup warm water to a large mixing bowl and sprinkle in yeast. Let stand to dissolve for 5 minutes.

Add the milk, butter, salt, sugar, and flour to the yeast mixture and beat until smooth and blended. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let stand overnight at room temperature.

Heat a nonstick waffle iron. Whisk eggs and baking soda into batter. Pour about 1/2 to 3/4 cup batter into waffle iron. Bake until they are golden and crisp.

Serve with maple syrup and butter or your favorite jam or lemon curd or Nutella and strawberries.

What have you been cooking these days?

P.S. A lazy egg sandwich and a Trader Joe’s breakfast hack.