Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Happy (belated) International Waffle Day

In honor of last Sunday being International Waffle Day, this week's cooking blog will be about ...

Lemon Bars

Kidding !

Well, not about the part that Sunday was International Waffle Day.  That is a fact.

International Waffle Day began in Sweden, where it's name is 'International Waffle Day' in Swedish.  The holiday falls on the day that the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary and surprised her with the news that she was pregnant with Jesus.

I suppose it went something like this:

Gabriel:  "Hi, Mary.  How are you?  Guess what!?!  You are going to have a baby!  Here's a waffle!"

If you check your calendar, you will see that March 25th is nine months from Christmas.  As time went on the day was also celebrated as the first day of spring.  The winter tasks of chopping firewood and knitting were over and Swedish women were able to start their spring chores.  Spring chores included making waffles.

I wonder what would have happened if someone in Sweden wanted waffles during the winter?  Would the woman of the house put her hands on her hips, roll her eyes and with a sigh, explain that she was busy chopping wood and knitting?  If you want waffles, go make 'em yourself or you can just wait until March 25th.

I seem to be having a lot of conversations in my head today.

Anyway ~

This major holiday is not to be confused with National Waffle Day on August 24th.  That holiday represents the day in 1869 when Cornelius Swarthout patented the first waffle iron in the United States.  

I love both waffles and pancakes.  On the rare occasions when Randy and I go out for breakfast I am likely to order pancakes.  Usually of the blueberry variety.  Do not, I repeat, do not put whip cream on my pancakes or waffles.  First of all, it isn't really real whip cream.  Secondly, this isn't dessert, it's breakfast.  Even when we have breakfast for dinner, whip cream doesn't belong on pancakes or waffles.  Or French toast, for that matter.

With no Bisquick in my kitchen, my recipe for waffle batter comes from my trusty Betty Crocker cook book that I got from Mom and Dad for Christmas in 1978.  It is well used and well loved.

In an 8-cup measuring apparatus, whisk together two eggs.

Stir in 1-1/2 cups of milk (I use buttermilk) and 1/2 cup of oil (or melted butter).

It isn't in the recipe, but I add a dash of vanilla.

Toss in the dry ingredients ...

... 2 cups flour ...

... 4 teaspoons baking powder ...

... 1 tablespoon sugar ...

... 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Stir until just combined.  Sometimes I have to add more buttermilk, it just depends on how thick the batter is and how spunky I am feeling at the time.

Place your Mickey Mouse waffle iron on a baking sheet.  What !?!  You don't own a Mickey Mouse waffle iron?  I do!  My wonderful sister gave it me for Christmas a very long time ago.

When the waffle iron is ready, pour in some batter, lower the lid and let 'em cook until golden brown.  Now, it is a given that, in an effort to make sure Mickey's ears are complete, I will over-fill the iron.  It is for that very reason why I put the baking sheet underneath him.  It catches all the drips.

What is it about waffle and pancake batter that turns it into a substance harder than super glue when it dries?

For as much as I love sweets, maple syrup is something that I never use.  I slather Mickey with butter and jam - making sure that the good stuff gets in all his mouse crevices.

And, just like a chocolate Easter bunny - the first thing to go is Mickey's ears.

Have the BEST day ever!
~ Dorothy

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