To have a real brunch party is great fun – a different time of day to entertain! Last Sunday was our last day with Bianca and Cesare visiting from Italy by way of South Carolina, as Cesare is learning the American way in South Carolina for the Italian company he is working for. Bianca is the daughter of the family our eldest son lived with in Arezzo, when he was doing his semester abroad in college some 8 years ago. Our two families became instant friends with visits going back and forth from the day of our meeting. This stay Bianca was with us for 10 days, Cesare came on Thursday for the weekend. They both love food and fortunately are fans of my cooking so they are a joy to cook for. For her goodbye meal, Bianca wanted pancakes or waffles. I opted for waffles for Sunday brunch,
along with some sausages and a big beautiful fruit salad. Of course, since this was a party, some of us started with mimosas (made with Prosecco) or Bloody Marys.
I have not made waffles in a very long time, since the boys have grown up and we are not together on Sunday mornings very often. And I am not the type to be whipping egg whites to fold into the batter, if you know what I mean. I wanted something simple and quick, knowing I’d have to make a double batch for the eight of us. I found this wonderful recipe online from In Jennie’s Kitchen blog, similar to the one in the recipe book that came with the waffle iron eons ago that I could no longer find. It was great – perfect – easy – delicious! Bianca says she wants to get married, only so she can get a waffle iron as a shower or wedding present! (I think I’ll get her one soon!)
Now the thing I was fretting about late into Saturday night, was how was I going to keep the first cooked waffles warm while continuing to make them and have the full batch ready for everyone. A little research online came up with a very low temperature in your oven and put them straight on the racks, not on a plate or cookie sheet as that would cause moisture to form and sogginess to beset them. So I did this, but the lowest my oven would go was 175 degrees and they were recommending 150. So I turned the oven off and on, afraid they would dry out. In hindsight, I should have just left it on at 175 the whole time, as they could have been a bit hotter.
Here’s the recipe with thanks to In Jennie’s Kitchen:
QUICK & EASY HOMEMADE WAFFLES – makes 5 to 6 Belgian-style waffles
1 3/4 cups flour
1 tbs.baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 3/4 cups milk
2 large eggs
1/2 cup melted butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl. In another bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, melted butter and vanilla extract. Pour the milk mixture over the dry mixture and whisk until just combined. Let sit five minutes to “develop” (just a fancy word for letting the baking powder activate).
Meanwhile, heat your waffle iron. Pour, or ladle, enough batter to cover about 2/3 of the surface (the rest will spread once you close the top). Most waffle irons have a handy light that goes on or off, signaling the waffles are ready. A sure sign of doneness is once you see all the steam has stopped shooting out.
Have a LOVEly brunch wherever you are!