Category Archives: Breads

Japanese Nikuman

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Twenty-one years ago, about one year after Brian and I were married, we moved to Japan. Brian had just graduated with his undergraduate degree and had gotten a job with a Japanese investment bank in Tokyo. We were excited about the new opportunity, but as recent graduates our finances were very limited. We moved with 4 suitcases full of clothes, a mattress set, and a couple of boxes of dishes, towels and books. That was the extent of our net worth at the time. The suitcases came with us on the airplane; the other items went by slow boat and arrived about 3 months later.

Our first two weeks in Japan were spent in a luxury hotel in downtown Tokyo. The company paid for our stay in the hotel while we searched for an apartment to rent. The hotel room was paid for, but not any other expenses (like food). The company also provided a $1500 start-up bonus to help us set up our apartment and for living expenses until our first paycheck (one month later). That $1500 had to furnish an entire apartment, including refrigerator, stove, and furniture and cover utility deposits. Plus living expenses for the month. In a country where a gallon of milk cost about $10/gallon-and that was 2 decades ago. In a gross understatement, we lived very frugally for some time.

Our first meal in Japan was a company dinner of Kaiseki (a highly formal and decorative Japanese meal-very heavy on seafood in varieties I couldn’t begin to name). The next day we were on our own, for house-hunting and eating. This began my introduction to inexpensive Japanese street food: onigiri, tako-yaki, yaki-soba, and these fabulous steamed buns- Nikuman.

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Nikuman are hot, soft steamed buns surrounding a spicy minced pork filling. These buns were one of my favorite new Japanese foods. They were delicious and cheap. The perfect combination for poor starving gaijin.

In Japan, I would never have dreamed of making these at home. They are readily available everywhere: from street vendors to convenience stores. Upon returning home, however, I wanted to try to recreate what had become not only a favorite food, but a nostalgic memory.

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I have tried dough recipes that use either baking powder or yeast as a leavening. Although it takes a little more time, I highly recommend using a yeast dough. The resulting soft, light buns are worth the extra rise time.

To make the buns, flatten dough to form a circle about 5” in diameter so that the middle is slightly thicker than the edges (pinch edges of dough with your fingers to make edges thinner). Place about a tablespoon of filling in the middle of the circle.

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Bring the dough up around the meat to the top, forming little pleats around the edges of the dough.

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Slightly twist the dough to close it, and pinch it firmly to seal. If your dough is dry, moisten edges slightly with water before sealing.

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Place the buns on  squares of parchment paper.  Let the buns rise for 15-20 minutes before steaming.

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Add about 1 Tbs vinegar to the water in the bottom of a steamer (this helps keep the buns white). Bring water to a boil. Place buns with the parchment paper in the top of a steamer (a rice cooker or slow cooker can also be used to steam). Cover and steam for 20 minutes over high heat.

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Serve hot. Buns can be eaten plain or dipped in soy sauce (plain or spicy: soy sauce + chili paste or hot mustard)

RECIPE:

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Japanese Nikuman
—–(adapted from LaFujiMama and JustHungry)

Dough:
2 packages dry yeast
1/4 cup warm (not hot) water
about 6 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup very hot water (bring to a boil and then let cool for 5 minutes)
1 cup warm (not hot) milk
1 tsp baking powder
2 Tbs coconut oil, lard or vegetable shortening

Parchment paper
White vinegar

Cut the parchment paper into 24 squares about 3” square. Set aside.

In a small bowl, stir together 1/4 cup warm water with a pinch of sugar. Sprinkle the yeast over the sugar water and proof 5-10 minutes, or until foamy.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together 5 cups of the flour and the sugar. Make a well in the center, add the hot water and mix rapidly. Add the warm milk and mix. Then mix in the yeast mixture, baking powder, and the shortening or lard. Mix well. Add the rest of the flour a little at a time until you have a workable dough (you may not need the entire additional 1 cup). Knead for a few minutes until the dough is soft and pliable.

Place dough in a large oiled bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel. Leave in a warm place until the dough has doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes.

Divide the dough into 24 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball, and let rest for 5 minutes.

Filling:
1 lb ground pork
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 (5 oz) can bamboo shoots, finely chopped
2 Tbs finely grated fresh ginger
1-2 Tbs chili garlic sauce (adjust based on how spicy you want it)
3 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs granulated sugar
1 Tbs sesame oil

Mix the ground pork, onion, bamboo shoots and ginger in a large bowl. Add the chili garlic sauce, soy sauce, sugar, and sesame oil. Mix the ingredients together until well incorporated.

Assembling Buns:
To fill the buns, flatten each dough ball to a circle about 5” in diameter so that the middle is slightly thicker than the edges (pinch edges of dough with your fingers to make edges thinner). Place about a tablespoon of filling in the middle of the circle. Bring the dough up around the meat to the top, forming little pleats around the edges of the dough. Slightly twist the dough to close it, and pinch it firmly to seal. (If your dough is dry, moisten edges slightly with water before sealing.) Place the bun on the prepared squares of parchment paper. Repeat with remaining dough and meat filling. Let the buns rise for 15-20 minutes before steaming.

Add about 1 Tbs vinegar to the water in the bottom of a steamer (this helps keep the buns white). Bring water to a boil. Place buns with the parchment paper in the top of a steamer (a rice cooker or slow cooker can also be used to steam). Cover and steam for 20 minutes over high heat.

Serve hot. Buns can be eaten plain or dipped in soy sauce (plain or spicy: soy sauce + chili paste or hot mustard)

Makes 24 buns

 

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Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

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Looking for a banana muffin that is moist and full of banana flavor? This recipe (slightly adapted from Cook’s Illustrated) is your answer. It packs FIVE bananas into a single loaf of bread (or batch of 15-18 muffins).

I like bananas, but only if they are on the slightly green side. Once they are completely yellow or start to brown, I won’t touch them. I can push them on the kids for a little longer, but none of us are squishy banana fans. So I regularly have one or two bananas from a bunch that go “bad” before we eat them. So I peel and throw these overripe bananas into my freezer in Ziploc bags. Eventually those bags get to the bursting point, and I know I need to do some banana baking.

This recipe is one of our favorites. The bananas are cooked (in the microwave) until they are liquidy, and then the liquid is reduced to concentrate the banana flavor. You can add chocolate chips and/or chopped nuts to your liking.

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The muffins also freeze nicely if you happen to have A LOT of bananas to use up and want to make multiple batches!

RECIPE:

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Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (or Bread)
——————————(adapted from Cook’s Illustrated)

1 3/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
5 large very ripe bananas
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 large eggs
3/4 cup light brown sugar
1teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line muffin tins with 15-18 paper liners, or grease muffin tins.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt.

Place bananas in a microwave-safe bowl; cover with waxed paper. Microwave on high power until bananas are soft and have released liquid, about 5 minutes. Pour bananas into a strainer placed over a medium saucepan. Allow to drain, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes. Set banana pulp aside.

Place the saucepan with the banana liquid over medium-high heat and cook until reduced to ¼ cup, about 5 minutes. Remove pan from heat and stir banana pulp into the reduced liquid. Mash with a potato masher or a fork until fairly smooth. Whisk in butter, eggs, brown sugar and vanilla.

Pour banana mixture into flour mixture and stir until just combined. Gently fold in chocolate chips and walnuts, if using.

Pour batter into the prepared muffin tins. Bake for 15 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.

Makes 15-18 muffins

FOR BANANA BREAD: Spray a medium loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray. Pour batter into pan. Bake at 350°F for 55 to 70 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool bread in pan on wire rack 15 minutes, then remove loaf from pan and continue to cool on a wire rack.

 

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Thanksgiving: Pumpkin Dinner Rolls

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These pumpkin rolls have had a place at our Thanksgiving table for more than a dozen years now. They are a savory roll, not sweet. The pumpkin flavor is not strong, but the pumpkin and spices add a subtle flavor that goes perfectly with a Thanksgiving meal. When we are not eating them with Thanksgiving dinner, I like to serve them with honey butter (1 stick butter mixed with 1-2 Tbs honey).

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I usually make crescent shaped rolls and knots when I make dinner rolls. To make crescent rolls, divide the dough into thirds. Roll each third into a circle. Cut into 8 wedges. Roll up beginning with the large end. Pinch end into bottom dough of the roll so that it doesn’t unravel when rising. Place rolls on a greased baking sheet (or use a silicon baking sheet), curving ends toward the center as you place them on the baking sheet.

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Brush or spray dough crescents with oil, cover with a towel and let rise until doubled. For a shiny finish, brush rolls with an egg white wash (room temperature egg white mixed with 1 Tbs water) before baking.

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To make knots: pinch off a golf-ball sized piece of dough. Roll it in your hands to make a long rope (about 8-10 inches long). Tie rope in a knot (just like you are tying your shoes) leaving the two ends about 1-2 inches long. Fold two ends around to the back of the knot and pinch them together to seal. Place the knot on a baking sheet with the pinched ends on the bottom.

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When making rolls for Thanksgiving, I like to make them ahead of time and then reheat them just before serving. I parbake the rolls and then freeze them until I am ready to serve them. Parbaking (or slightly underbaking) keeps them from overbrowning when you reheat the rolls in the oven just before serving.

To make and freeze: Shape rolls and place on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicon mat. Let rise as usual. Bake rolls for 10-12 minutes, or until rolls just barely begin to brown, but are cooked in the center. Rolls should look slightly underdone (not completely brown). Remove from oven. Cool completely. Place in Ziploc freezer bags. Freeze.

On serving day: Place frozen rolls on a baking sheet, bake for about 7-10 minutes, or until hot and golden brown. If rolls are thawed, bake for 5-6 minutes, or until browned. Brush tops with butter and serve immediately.

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RECIPE:

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Pumpkin Dinner Rolls
——————-
Yield: about 2 dozen rolls

1 ¼ cups warm water
1 egg
1 cup pumpkin puree
3 Tbs honey
2 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs molasses
4 cups whole wheat and/or white flour
1/3 cup wheat gluten
¼ cup sugar
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice ***
2 tsp salt
1  Tbs instant yeast

about 1 additional cup flour
1 egg white, mixed with 1 Tbs water

Mix wet ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Add flour, gluten, sugar, spices, salt and yeast. Mix until thoroughly combined. Add additional flour, if needed, a little at a time until dough just begins to form a ball. Knead for 5-6 minutes, or until dough pulls away from sides of the bowl and springs back slightly when touched.

Shape into rolls (knots or crescents are what I usually make). Place on lightly greased baking sheets. Spray or brush with oil and cover with towel. Let rise for 30-60 minutes, or until doubled in size. Brush with egg white (room temp) mixed with 1 Tbs. water. Bake at 375°F for about 15 minutes.

***Pumpkin Pie Spice substitute: 1 tsp cinnamon, ¼ tsp nutmeg, and 1/8 tsp each allspice, ginger, and cloves.

If desired serve with Honey Butter: 1 stick butter mixed with 1-2 Tbs honey

To make and freeze:Shape rolls and place on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicon mat. Let rise as usual. Bake rolls for 10-12 minutes, or until rolls just barely begin to brown, but are cooked in the center. Rolls should look slightly underdone (not completely brown). Remove from oven. Cool completely. Place in Ziploc freezer bags. Freeze.

On serving day: Place frozen rolls on a baking sheet, bake for about 7-10 minutes, or until hot and golden brown. If rolls are thawed, bake for 5-6 minutes, or until browned. Brush tops with butter and serve immediately.

 

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Pear Cardamom Bundt Cake with Lime Glaze

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I love the smells of fall baking. That combination of fruits like apples and pears with heavily fragrant cinnamon, cardamom and other spices. This recipe makes a highly adaptable batter that can be made into a bundt cake, quick-bread loaves, or muffins. Or if your bundt pan is on the small side, like mine, a combination of both cake and muffins. Breakfast and dessert all in one shot!

The lime glaze provides a tart, but sweet contrast to the fragrant fall flavors in the pear cake.

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I love cinnamon, but I don’t enjoy large amounts of nutmeg. Small amounts are fine, but I find that it can be very overpowering. One of my favorite fall spices to bake with is cardamom, and I will often swap out nutmeg in a recipe and replace it with cardamom. Cardamom is in the same family as ginger, but it is the seeds and pods that are ground and used for cooking, unlike the root with ginger. It is often used in Indian cooking, but is also a great compliment to cinnamon. It is a versatile spice that can be used in both sweet and savory cooking.

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The recipe below makes enough batter for a 12-cup bundt pan. My bundt pan only holds 10 cups, so I use the recipe to make 6 muffins (measure these out first) and the smaller bundt cake. Without the glaze, the muffins make a great breakfast, and they bake up light and airy.

The pears in this recipe are very finely chopped, or grated. I use a food processor to chop them finely. Pear skins are very thin, so I leave those on. They are not noticeable at all in the baked goods.

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RECIPE:

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Pear Cardamom Bundt Cake with Lime Glaze

Cake:
3 medium pears
about 1/2 cup buttermilk, milk or plain yogurt (see recipe for exact amount)
3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
3 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1 cup finely chopped walnuts or pecans

Lime Glaze, recipe below (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour desired pans: one 12-cup bundt pan; one 10-cup bundt pan plus 6 muffin cups; 2 loaf pans; or 24 muffin cups.

Core pears. Finely chop or grate unpeeled pears (I use a food processor) and place in a 2-cup measuring cup. Use a fork to slightly mash the pears (you should have about 1 1/2 cups chopped, mashed pears). Add buttermilk to the pears to equal 2 cups. Set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl, beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Mix in pear/buttermilk mixture.

In a small bowl, combine flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and cardamom. Mix into pear batter just until combined. Fold in nuts. Pour batter into desired pans and bake as directed below.

FOR A 12 CUP BUNDT PAN: Bake for 50-60 minutes.

FOR A 10-CUP BUNDT PAN: First scoop batter into 6 muffin cups. Pour remaining batter into 10-cup bundt pan. Bake bundt for 35-45 minutes and muffins for 18-20 minutes.

FOR TWO LOAF PANS: Bake for 50-60 minutes.

FOR 24-26 MUFFINS: Bake for 18-20 minutes.

Lime Glaze (optional):
2 cups powdered sugar
2 Tbs heavy cream
1 Tbs lime juice
zest of one lime

Combine all glaze ingredients and mix until smooth. Add additional lime juice or cream until glaze can be drizzled over cake. Cool cake or loaves completely before drizzling with glaze.

 

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Strawberry Nutella Muffins

051711 074-1After bringing these muffins to our early morning seminary class, I have had several requests for the recipe. So I am going to take a break from days full of never-ending weeding in my yard and nights full of endless softball games to share them with you. Strawberries are just beginning to arrive at the farmers markets and pick-your-own farms here in western PA, so it is a perfect time to make these muffins. And everything tastes better with a little Nutella swirled in!

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I found this recipe on Two Peas & Their Pod, and just couldn’t resist making them. The only changes that I made to the recipe were to add more strawberries than called for, and probably more Nutella. I didn’t actually measure the Nutella; I just scooped it out of the jar to put in the center of the muffins.

As with most muffin batters, to keep them from being dry and dense, you do not want to overstir the batter. There should still be some streaks of flour in the batter.

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Fill the muffin cups halfway with batter. Place a dollop (about a tablespoon: I just used a soup spoon straight from the jar) of Nutella on the batter. You do not need to spread it around. Nutella can be kind of thick at room temperature. I warmed the Nutella first in the microwave for about 30 seconds. This made it really easy to drizzle the Nutella from a spoon onto the batter. My jar was almost empty, so I just heated the Nutella in the jar. If you are only using part of your jar, you might want to spoon some into a small bowl before heating it.

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Top with another scoop of batter, until the muffin cups are about 3/4 full. Sprinkle with Turbinado sugar. This is a coarse raw sugar. You could use regular sugar if you don’t have it, but turbinado sugar does make a nice crystally (I’m sure that’s not a real word, but it should be) crust.

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These are best served warm while the Nutella is soft and gooey.

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Here is the original recipe from Maria, with my notes at the end on the slight changes that I made.

RECIPE:

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Strawberry Nutella Muffins
————(from Two Peas & Their Pod)

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup canola oil
1 large egg
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped fresh strawberries
1/3 cup Nutella
Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling on top of muffins

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin tin with paper liners or grease well. Set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and sugar.

3. In a small bowl, combine canola oil, egg, buttermilk, and vanilla. Use a fork or whisk and mix until well combined.

5. Incorporate the wet ingredients into flour mixture.  Add slowly and gently stir, you don’t want to over mix.  The batter will be thick. Carefully fold in the strawberries.

6. Fill each muffin cup half way with batter. Next, add a small spoonful of Nutella to each muffin cup. Cover the Nutella filling with the remaining batter. Sprinkle each muffin with turbinado sugar.

7. Bake muffins for 17-20 minutes, or until muffins are golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Remove the muffins from the pan and let cool on a cooling rack.

Makes 9 muffins

Kelly’s notes: I used coconut oil instead of canola oil. I didn’t measure the Nutella, I just used a spoon and scooped straight from the jar, but I probably used a little more than 1/3 cup. I heated the Nutella for about 30 seconds in the microwave before using (to make for easier drizzling). I also used more strawberries than called for (about 1 1/4 – 1 1/2 cups). I ended up with 12 muffins, and I needed to bake mine for 23 minutes before they were cooked through.

 

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Waffle Week: Lemon Yogurt Waffles

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Desserts in our house usually have to come in both a chocolate and non-chocolate variety. So, alongside our Double Chocolate Waffles, we had these Lemon Yogurt Waffles.

These waffles are a little sweeter than regular waffles (even after I cut the sugar in half from the original recipe), so I don’t think I would want them for breakfast. Little A had no problem eating them anytime of the day, however.

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The waffles are made with plain yogurt and flavored with fresh lemon zest. They have more of a light cake consistency than regular waffles.
The berry sauce was a perfect accompaniment for the sweet lemon taste of the waffles.

For Waffle Tips & Suggestions, click HERE.

RECIPE:

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Lemon Yogurt Waffles
——————(adapted from The Perfect Pantry)

1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2-1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
Grated zest of 2 lemons
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the yogurt, sugar, oil, eggs, lemon zest, and vanilla. Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.

Use a ladle or measuring cup to pour batter evenly into hot waffle maker (about 2 scant cups for the 4 small Belgian waffles in my waffle maker). Cook for about 3-5 minutes, or according to directions on your waffle maker. Remove waffles from waffle maker and place on a wire rack (not a plate). Serve immediately or keep warm in a warm oven (very low heat).

Makes 2-3 large Belgian waffles (8-12 small squares)

To freeze: Cool waffles on a wire rack. Place in Ziploc bags and freeze. Reheat individual frozen waffles in a toaster (for crispier edges) or microwave (for a soft waffle).

 

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Waffle Week: Double Chocolate Waffles

050711 010-1Dessert Waffles:
AKA, How to convince your mom to let you eat dessert for breakfast

We ate these Chocolate Waffles the first time for dessert topped with black raspberry ice cream and a triple-berry sauce. The kids convinced me they would also be good for breakfast the next morning, without the ice cream but with whipped cream instead. I don’t think that really changed the sugar content any!

These chocolate waffles are not too heavy, but with the addition of mini chocolate chips in the batter and topped with ice cream and berry syrup, they are reminiscent of a brownie sundae. Next time I would like to try them topped with vanilla ice cream and buttermilk syrup.

For Waffle Tips & Suggestions, click HERE.

RECIPE:

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Double Chocolate Waffles
                 (from Our Best Bites)

2/3 cup flour
1/3 cup corn starch
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp (scant) cinnamon
1 cup milk or buttermilk
1/3 cup oil
6 Tbs granulated sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 C mini chocolate chips

Combine flour, cornstarch, cocoa powder, baking powder and soda, salt and cinnamon. Use a whisk to combine. In a separate bowl whisk together milk, oil, sugar, egg and vanilla. Whisk for a minute so it gets a little frothy. Slowly add the wet ingredients into the dry a little at a time, whisking to combine. Just stir until they’re combined and don’t over mix.

Use a ladle or measuring cup to pour batter evenly into hot waffle maker (about 2 scant cups for the 4 small Belgian waffles in my waffle maker). Sprinkle about 1/3 of the chocolate chips (for a large Belgian waffle maker) over the batter in the waffle iron. Spread lightly with a heat proof spatula so that a small amount of batter covers chocolate chips. Cook for about 3-5 minutes, or according to directions on your waffle maker. Remove waffles from waffle maker and place on a wire rack (not a plate). Serve immediately or keep warm in a warm oven (very low heat).

Makes about 3 large Belgian waffles (12 small squares)

To freeze: Cool waffles on a wire rack. Place in Ziploc bags and freeze. Reheat individual frozen waffles in a toaster (for crispier edges) or microwave (for a soft waffle).

 

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Waffle Week: Whole Grain Waffles

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Looking for a healthier waffle that is also great tasting? These whole grain waffles are made with whole wheat flour, oat flour (ground oats) and wheat germ. After making the Buttermilk Waffles (with no separated eggs), I used some of the same techniques to try and make these as light as possible. Replacing some of the flour with cornstarch and letting the batter sit for a little while before cooking really helped make these waffles great.

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With the heavier whole grains, they will never be quite as light as all-white-flour waffles, but they make up for in flavor what they lack in airiness.

For Waffle Tips & Suggestions, click HERE.

RECIPE:

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Whole Grain Waffles

1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 cup oat flour*
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 Tbs wheat germ
2 Tbs brown sugar
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups buttermilk or sourmilk (or 1 cup kefir + 1 cup milk)**
2 eggs
1/4 cup oil
1 tsp vanilla

Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix remaining ingredients. Add wet ingredients to dry; mix well. Let batter sit for 30 minutes before cooking. Do not stir batter after letting it sit.

Use a ladle or measuring cup to pour batter evenly into hot waffle maker (about 2 scant cups for the 4 small Belgian waffles in my waffle maker). Cook for about 3-5 minutes, or according to directions on your waffle maker. Remove waffles from waffle maker and place on a wire rack (not a plate). Serve immediately or keep warm in a warm oven (very low heat).

Makes about 3 large Belgian waffles (12 small squares)

* To make oat flour: Place rolled oats in a blender or food processor and blend until fine.

**To make sour milk: add 2 Tbs lemon juice to a 2 cup measuring cup, fill to 2 cup line with milk (whole milk works best). Stir; let sit 5 minutes before using. If using sour milk, add an additional 1-2 Tbs flour to batter.

To freeze: Cool waffles on a wire rack. Place in Ziploc bags and freeze. Reheat individual frozen waffles in a toaster (for crispier edges) or microwave (for a soft waffle).

 

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Waffle Week: One-Bowl Buttermilk Waffles

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This is my favorite recipe for making same-morning (not overnight) waffles. I seem to have an irrational opposition to separating eggs, beating the whites separately and then folding them back into the batter. To compensate for not beating the egg whites, this batter is best if let to sit for 30 minutes before cooking. I realize that letting the batter sit for half an hour doesn’t really make these any faster to make than recipes using separated eggs, but psychologically I find these “faster”.

The batter contains a small amount of cornstarch (mixed with the flour and baking powder & soda) which helps to make the batter lighter. I love the light texture of the waffles with great air-pockets. And no egg white beating!

For Waffle Tips & Suggestions, click HERE.

RECIPE:

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One-Bowl Buttermilk Waffles (No Separated Eggs)
——————————-(adapted from Food Network)

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 cups buttermilk or sour milk**
1/2 cup oil
2 eggs
2 Tbs brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract

In a large bowl, combine the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; mix well. Add the buttermilk, oil, eggs, brown sugar and vanilla and mix well. Let the batter sit for 30 minutes. Do not stir batter after letting it sit.

Use a ladle or measuring cup to pour batter evenly into hot waffle maker (about 2 cups for the 4 small Belgian waffles in my waffle maker). Cook for about 3-5 minutes, or according to directions on your waffle maker. Remove waffles from waffle maker and place on a wire rack (not a plate). Serve immediately or keep warm in a warm oven (very low heat).

Makes 4 large Belgian waffles (16 small squares)

**To make sour milk: add 2 Tbs lemon juice to a 2 cup measuring cup, fill to 2 cup line with milk (whole milk works best). Stir; let sit 5 minutes before using. If using sour milk, add an additional 1-2 Tbs flour to batter.

To freeze: Cool waffles on a wire rack. Place in Ziploc bags and freeze. Reheat individual frozen waffles in a toaster (for crispier edges) or microwave (for a soft waffle).

 

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Waffle Week: Sourdough Waffles

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I make this waffle recipe more often than any other that I have tried. It is a great way for me to use some of my sourdough starter (without the commitment of all-day-bread-making). It is another overnight recipe, so it does need to be started the night before. I find this more convenient than mixing batter in the morning. I make the batter after the kids go to bed, and they are ready to cook with minimal effort in the morning. These waffles are slightly tangy, like the Yeast Raised Waffles, but the flavor is not as “yeasty”. Just how sour the waffles taste will depend on the strength of your starter.

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My kids especially like these waffles. They are very light and airy, with great pockets inside and out for soaking up syrup or other toppings.

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For Waffle Tips & Strategies, click HERE.

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Don’t have any sourdough starter? These waffles are reason enough to make one! Here are a couple of resources for sourdough starter recipes:

Annie’s Eats (uses commercial yeast)
Sourdough Home (does not start with yeast; this is the method that I used to make my starter)

RECIPE:

sourdough waffles (5)-1

Sourdough Waffles
————-(adapted from King Arthur Flour via Annie’s Eats)

For the overnight sponge:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbs sugar
2 cups buttermilk
1 cup sourdough starter, straight from the refrigerator (not fed)**

For the waffles:
2 large eggs
¼ cup oil
All of the overnight sponge
2 Tbs sugar
¾ tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda

To make the overnight sponge, combine the flour, sugar, buttermilk and sourdough starter in a large mixing bowl.  Mix well to blend.  Cover and let rest overnight at room temperature.

When you are ready to make the waffles, preheat a waffle iron according to the manufacturer’s instructions.  In a small bowl or liquid measuring cup, combine the eggs and oil.   Add to the overnight sponge.**  Mix in the sugar, salt and baking soda, stirring well to combine.  The batter will bubble.

Pour the batter into the preheated waffle iron and bake according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Use slightly less batter than usual (I use a very scant 1/2 cup batter in each section of my waffle maker), as this will continue to rise and spread in the waffle maker.

Remove waffles from waffle maker and place on a wire rack (not a plate). Serve immediately or keep warm in a warm oven (very low heat).

**SOURDOUGH STARTER NOTE: Sourdough starters can have different thicknesses (hydration). After adding eggs in the morning, if the batter is too thick to scoop with a ladle or measuring cup, add a  little bit more buttermilk. The batter will have a different consistency than normal waffle batters: it should be like a thin bread dough, be thin enough to scoop, but not thin enough to pour.

Makes about 4 1/2 large Belgian waffles (18 small squares)

To freeze: Cool waffles on a wire rack. Place in Ziploc bags and freeze. Reheat individual frozen waffles in a toaster (for crispier edges) or microwave (for a soft waffle).

 

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