Not to be confused with American or Belgian waffles, Liège-Style Waffles are small, dense and crunchy-sweet, owing to the addition of Belgian pearl sugar nibs, which caramelize as the waffle cooks. These waffles are more of a sweet snack (think street food) than breakfast fare, so don’t even think about drenching them in maple syrup – that would be over the top and may send you into sugar-shock. I love these served slightly warm with a big dollop of chocolate hazelnut spread on top, some sweetened whipped cream, and a few fresh berries.
Yield: about 10 waffles
- 1/4 cup (60 grams) whole milk, lukewarm (110˚F)
- 2 tablespoons (27 grams) light brown sugar
- 1 ¼ teaspoons instant dry yeast
- 1 1/3 cups (173 grams) all-purpose flour
- ¼ plus 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 large (100 grams) eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 11 tablespoons (155 grams) unsalted butter, melted
- 3/4 cup (121 grams) Belgian pearl sugar (available here)
- Whipped cream
- Nutella or other chocolate hazelnut spread
- Fresh berries, such as raspberries, sliced strawberries and blueberries
- Confectioners’ sugar
- In a small bowl, whisk together the warm milk, brown sugar and yeast. Let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the flour and salt together at low speed until blended. Gradually add the yeast mixture and mix at medium speed until a very shaggy dough begins to form, about a minute. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as necessary. Add the vanilla to the melted butter and add to the dough while mixing at medium-low speed. Mix until smooth. Remove the bowl from the mixer stand, cover with a tea towel or plastic wrap, and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, 1 ½ to 2 hours.
- Stir the Belgian pearl sugar into the dough by hand until evenly distributed. Divide the dough into 10 balls and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 225˚ Preheat your waffle iron for 10 minutes. Have a baking sheet at hand.
- Spray the waffle iron generously with non-stick cooking spray. Cook one dough ball at a time, placing it in the center of the iron and cooking until it is golden and crisp. Place the waffle on the baking sheet and place in the warm oven while you make more waffles with the remaining dough. Serve the waffles warm with the suggested toppings.