Liège Waffles ... the preparation
This is a very exciting weekend for me. I didn't do much except the Baked Stuffed Meatballs and Linguini for lunch yesterday. I want to devote my time to my special waffles. You must be wondering what's so special about it. Well, the last time I tasted it was last year and like I said in my previous post, I will make these waffles in the future. The future is now!
I was going to do this last night but I want my pictures to be as far as step 10 when the dough is mixed with the pearl sugar and divided into oval chunks which means they will be ready for cooking after the final rising stage. So here's part 1 and how it happened ...
recipe adapted from sarahsjoys
1 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
1/4 cup scalded whole milk at 110-115 degrees
2 tbsp + 2 tsp. of water at 110-115 degrees
2 cups bread flour
1 extra large room temperature egg, lightly beaten
1 tbsp. + 1 tsp. light brown sugar
3/4 tsp. salt
1 stick unsalted butter- room temp
1 tbsp honey
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup Belgian Pearl Sugar
1. Place yeast, milk, and water into the work bowl of a stand mixer. Stir for a few seconds to moisten the yeast.
2. Add the egg and 1/3 of the flour. Mix to blend. Scrape down sides of bowl.
3. Sprinkle remaining flour over the mixture, but do not stir it in. Cover and let stand 75-90 minutes (you’ll notice the batter bubbling up through the cover of flour by the time expires). I did it for 90 minutes and with good results.
4. Add brown sugar and salt to the work bowl and mix on low speed just to blend.
5. With machine on low, add honey and vanilla. Then add 2 tbsp of butter at a time. Mix 4 minutes at medium-low speed; scrape down sides once or twice in that period. Let the dough rest for 1 minute and then continue to mix for 2 minutes. If you measured your ingredients perfectly, the dough will be sticking to the sides of the bowl in the last minute of mixing and then, in the last 30 seconds of so, will start to ball-up on the paddle. If this does not happen, let the dough rest for 1 more minute and mix for another 2 minutes. Whatever the outcome of the extra mixing, proceed to Step 6. I didn't encounter any problem so it was full speed ahead to the next step!
6. Scrape the dough into a large bowl, sprinkle lightly with flour, cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for 4 hours. This step is crucial for developing the flavor.
7. REFRIGERATE FOR 30 MINUTES BEFORE PROCEEDING TO STEP #8. This is essential. The yeast respiration must be slowed before continuing. I missed this step so I prayed hard that it will not affect the waffles.
8. Stir the dough down (meaning: gently deflate the gases from the dough, by pressing on it with a rubber spatula), scrape it onto a piece of plastic wrap, and then use the spatula to press the dough into a long rectangle. Fold that rectangle over on itself (by thirds – like a letter) so that you have a square of dough. Wrap it in plastic, weigh it down a bit (I put two heavy dinner plates on top of it) and refrigerate overnight. Mine was rectangular all the way
9. The next day, place the cold dough (it will be quite firm) in a large bowl and add all of the pearl sugar to a bowl. It will seem like a lot of sugar, but it’s supposed to be mixed into the dough by hand until the chunks are well distributed. Divide the dough into 5 pieces of equal size- I did seven though because I think five is too big and I didn't use all of the 3/4 cup sugar pearl.
10. Shape each chunk into an oval ball (like a football without the pointy ends) and let it rise (covered loosely in plastic wrap) for exactly 90 minutes.
I have to wrap it up here and do the finale when the dough hits the waffle maker and I finally taste it. It is not difficult but it is time consuming. In between rising time, you can take a nap or read a book, watch TV or water your grass. That's what I did.