So the search began. I pored over cookbooks, food blogs and magazines in search of a great waffle. Here's what I was looking for in the classic breakfast treat:
First of all, it couldn't contain yeast. I honestly don't decide what breakfast is going to be until I'm making it, so planning it out the night before usually doesn't work for me. (Unless I'm entertaining, and then it's breakfast casserole all the way.) As for texture, it had to be crisp and crunchy, yet still soft in the middle. Flabby waffles are such a disappointment! Lastly, it had to have a filling. I usually prefer chopped pecans, but I'll throw in chocolate chips if I'm feeling crazy.
So after many failed attempts, I finally came up with the right recipe. It's been modified a bit over the years, and I've strayed a few times, but I just keep coming back to this one. Yes, it takes a bit more time and an extra bowl to whip the egg white, but I promise it's well worth the effort. I have a sneaky feeling that this will become your favorite waffle recipe, too.
CRUNCHY PECAN WAFFLES
SERVES 2 to 4
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour .
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 1/4 cup milk
- 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 egg, separated
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
Preheat waffle iron according to desired setting (I use the highest setting on mine). Preheat oven to 200 F.
Sift together all-purpose flour, cornstarch, salt, baking powder and baking soda.
In a separate bowl, whisk the buttermilk, milk, oil, egg yolk, vanilla and almond extract until well combined.
Using a hand mixer, beat the egg white until light and fluffy. Add sugar and continue beating until it is thick and glossy, with stiff peaks.
Pour the milk mixture into dry mixture and stir until just combined. Gently fold in the egg whites until no visible egg is remaining. Pour batter into the waffle iron and sprinkle generously with chopped pecans. Cook according to manufacturers instructions.
Keep cooked waffles in the warm oven (not stacked, as this causes them to get soggy) until ready to eat. Sprinkle the waffles with any remaining pecans and serve with fresh berries, butter and maple syrup.