Categories
Chocolate Cooking General Recipes

Buttermilk Waffles for Brunch!

My favourite type of waffles are Belgian Liège style waffles (names after Liège, a city in Belgium). There is a little shop in Kenginston Market in Toronto that serves up some pretty delicious ones! It’s called “Wafles & More“. They also serve a a pretty good hot chocolate, should you feel like a rich, warm drink to accompany your already decadent breakfast 🙂

Wafles & More
Belgian Waffles

I woke up this morning craving some waffles and since it is New Year’s Day (and most places are closed), I knew I would have to cook some up myself. Given that Liège style waffles are made with a yeast-based dough and therefore, cannot be made on a whim, within the hour, I decided upon buttermilk waffles instead. They turned out pretty great!

Should you want waffles that are not too sweet, with just a hint of warm molasses and sourness, slightly crisp on the top, fluffy in the middle, and glowing with a caramel-coloured hue, then try this recipe!

Ingredients:

2 cups of flour

1/4 cup turbinado, light brown, or dark brown sugar (packed)

1 teaspoon baking soda

1.5 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

0.5 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)

114 g (8 tablespoons) cultured, unsalted butter (if you can’t find cultured butter, any unsalted butter will do)

2 cups whole buttermilk

3 eggs (separated)

1 teaspoon vanilla essence

Toppings (you could use any or all of these, or throw on any toppings that appeal to you):

Whipped Cream (Ideally, flavour it with some liqueur)

Berries

Bananas

Melted Chocolate

Maple Syrup

Chocolate Hazelnut butter (go here for a recipe)

Nutella

Peanut Butter

Jam

Method:

1. Place all the dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix and then sift them all into a large bowl.

2. Warm the butter and buttermilk to just slightly warmer than room temperature.

3. Mix the butter, buttermilk, egg yolks, and vanilla essence together in a bowl. Then add this mixture to the dry ingredients and gently mix them all together with a whisk.

4. Whip the egg whites until they form stiff peaks.

5. Turn on your waffle maker.

6. Gently fold the egg whites into the mixture from step 3.

7. The batter is now ready! Spoon some into the waffle maker and let it cook for about 3 minutes. You will have to figure out how much batter to add into the waffle maker, as well as precisely how much time to let the waffles cook, after a few tries (both these variables will be influenced by the type of waffle maker you have).

8. Your waffles are good to go! Throw on some toppings and enjoy!

9. Just a note, I think whipped cream is an absolutely essential topping for waffles. I recommend whipping some up right before you start making the waffles. I also suggest adding some liqueur to the cream before you start whipping it up. I used cherry liqueur!

10. Also, if you’d like, you can make a few extra and store them in the fridge. I have found that when you’re ready to eat them, it’s best to heat them up in the oven at 350 degrees Celsius, for 2 mins on either side, after basting them with some butter.

Neatly plated waffles 😊
Simple buttermilk waffles
Messy waffles 😝
Categories
Chocolate Food General Recipes

Boozy Berries: Champagne Strawberries!

While plain old chocolate-covered strawberries are delicious in themselves (I’ve blogged about those before) some evenings or afternoons call for something with a little more Oomph; champagne gives strawberries exactly that!

Making these champagne-y berries is a little more complicated than simply serving your friends some fruit, but I think they’re fun and worth the effort!

Oh and a quick note: my partner got excited about injecting the berries with other sorts of alcohol, so we tried rum, vodka, and whiskey. We both felt all three options were too strong and they overpowered the strawberries; we would not recommend them!

 

Ingredients:

12-15 Strawberries

100 g good quality dark chocolate (I used Côte d’Or)

A cup of champagne (you might want to buy a mini-bottle of champagne, unless you want to drink the left-over champagne from a full-size bottle)

Equipment:

A tray

A sheet of parchment paper or wax paper

A syringe

A bain marie (double boiler) and stove, or a bowl and microwave

Method:

1. Wash the strawberries.

2. Fill the syringe with champagne and then inject each strawberry. Just experiment with it a little and see how much champagne you want in each strawberry. You will actually see the fruit fill out and become more plump. You’ll know if you’ve injected too much because the champagne will start squirting out of the fruit. It’s quite a fun process 🙂

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3. Once all the berries have been injected, melt some chocolate in a bowl. Ideally, one ought to temper the chocolate (go to this website for a pretty clear explanation of how to do it in case you are not familiar with the process). Tempering will ensure that the chocolate is glossy and shiny. If you don’t have the time and/or the patience, you can skip the tempering.

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4. Carefully dip each strawberry into the chocolate, holding the leafy portion of it, and then place it on a tray lined with parchment/wax paper.

5. Once all the berries have been coated, let them set on the tray for about 30 minutes.

Champagne filled chocolate strawberries

Champagne filled chocolate strawberries

6. Serve them to your guests!

Categories
Chocolate Food General Recipes

Dark Chocolate Strawberries Sprinkled with Toasted Brazil Nuts (a Quick and Healthy Dessert!)

Strawberries dipped in dark chocolate and coated in toasted nuts

I decided to stay in town for the long weekend because I wanted (had) to work on my thesis (it’s taking over my life!). So while it seemed like the whole world was outside enjoying the lovely spring weather, I was indoors all day, sitting at my desk, staring at this computer screen.

Earlier this afternoon, I felt particularly overwhelmed, and needed a little something to cheer myself up and keep me going on the chapter I was working on. So I went over to my pantry and picked out some snacks. I set out some dark chocolate covered biscuits and chocolate cream filled wafers on a plate and was about to walk away, when it occurred to me that I needed to add something more healthy to the mix. So I decided to make some chocolate covered strawberries!

Strawberries dipped in chocolate and sprinkled with toasted brazil nuts

The process is so simple that I don’t think it even makes sense to post a recipe. But, if you’ve never made chocolate covered strawberries, here are some simple tips.

Start off by melting some dark chocolate; you can use a microwave, just make sure to use a low heat setting, so as not to burn the chocolate.

If you’d like to sprinkle some nuts on the strawberries, pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and toast some brazil nuts or hazelnuts on a baking tray for about 5-7 minutes, until they are fragrant. Once cooled, place the nuts in a tea towel and rub them against each other through the towel, in order to remove their skins. Then, crush the nuts with a mortar and pestle and set the crushed nuts aside.

In the meantime, wash the berries and dry them with a paper towel. Then, dip the berries in chocolate. I decided to leave the leaves on the strawberries as it’s easier to work with them that way, and I also think it’s easier to pick them up by the leaves when you want to eat them 🙂

You can use your hands to coat the strawberries in chocolate, like this:Dipping strawberries in chocolate

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If you don’t want to use your hands, or you’d like to take the leaves off, you can also use a fondue fork.

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After you’ve dipped each berry in the chocolate, place it on a plate covered in wax paper or parchment paper.

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If you’ve decided to add nuts to the mix, coat the chocolate covered strawberries in the crushed nuts. Let the berries be for a while, until the chocolate hardens, and then serve them. And there you have it, a simple and quick snack or dessert that’s very healthy!

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