There are few virtues a man can possess more erotic than culinary skill.
Aphrodite: A Memoir of the Senses
by Isabel Allende

Starting in November of 2009 Michelle at the Big Black Dog formed a group to bake its way through Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Zoë François and Jeff Hertzberg. I loved Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, so I signed up with the group. Michelle first had us do a couple of warm-up assignments, which were my first attempt at blogging. The first "Official" post was on January 15, 2010, and it was followed by 41 more, on the 1st and 15th of each month. When I signed on I said I would bake the whole book, and like Horton (the elephant) I meant what I said and I said what I meant. I finished baking the book on October 1, 2011. Having completed that challenge, now I am just going to do some stuff, and post about it. As part of that stuff Michelle is posing a new, and different, challenge for us each month.

I am still baking bread, mostly the Five Minutes a Day kind, and if you would like to try the Five Minutes a Day bread method there are some links, with recipes, in the right hand column to get you started. Please give it a try.

But first, a word from my sponsor . . .
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This day be bread and peace my lot.
Alexander Pope

How can a nation be great if its bread tastes like Kleenex?

Julia Child

Everyone is kneaded out of the same dough but not baked in the same oven.
Yiddish proverb
(And some are only half baked.)

There is no love sincerer than the love of food.
George Bernard Shaw, via Sharon

Of all smells, bread; of all tastes, salt.
George Herbert

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year's Day Sourdough Waffles

Happy New Year to all.

Now I realize that some of you are perhaps not feeling up to a good breakfast this morning.  I hope that what you did last night was at least worth how you feel now.  I, on the other hand, had a nice dinner, read a bit, then went to bed at a decent hour.  My Mother always said that an hour of sleep before midnight was worth two after, and apparently Dr. Oz Himself agrees!  (Actually, he says that the best sleep comes between 10 pm and 2 am.)  So I was ready for a hearty breakfast to sustain me for the football games ahead. 

We had a very nice Christmas, and Santa was particularly good to me.  I must have been very good last year because I got a new waffle maker.  And not just any waffle maker, a Professional Double Belgian Waffle Maker! 
 No more amateur waffles for us!

If you have stayed at some of the finer hotels, Sleep Inn, for example, you may be familiar with the waffle makers on a stand that you rotate, or flip, after pouring in the batter. Using gravity as your friend, this makes for a more even waffle.  Well, the waffle maker Santa brought me goes one better, because not only does it rotate, it has two, count 'em, two irons!  So you can make two waffles at the same time.  This helps ameliorate, though it does not entirely eliminate, the dreaded waffle bottleneck.  (With only one iron there is a production bottleneck while each waffle cooks which causes demand to vastly exceed supply.  While you can keep waffles warm in a 200 degree oven, they are best fresh from the waffle iron.) 

And although my Professional Double Belgian Waffle Maker does not come with bells or whistles it does come with beeps and lights to tell when the waffles are done. 
It even comes with a dedicated batter dispenser!

To make the waffles I used my locally caught wild sourdough, and made sourdough whole wheat waffles.  They are not 100% whole wheat, but are 60/40 whole wheat/AP flour, to keep them light.  I am currently using 100% hydrated sourdough.

Whole Wheat Sourdough Waffles (or Pancakes)
The night before, mix 200g of your sourdough starter with 80g of AP flour, 120g WW flour and 200g water.   Leave at warm room temperature overnight, covered with plastic wrap or a plate.
 (For Buckwheat waffles use 120g  buckwheat flour in place of WW flour.)
Next morning remove 200g of starter to save for next time and to the rest add 1 egg (or 1/4 cup eggbeaters), 3 Tbs milk, and 2 tsp canola oil.   Mix 1 tsp sugar with 1/2 tsp baking soda and sprinkle on top. Stir gently to incorporate and until the batter begins to get foamy.  
Makes about 3 waffles using 2/3 cup batter for each, may be doubled.

Here is the batter, ready to go.  Note that the dedicated batter measure has a dedicated bowl hanger.  
 And here is a close-up of the batter. 

All those bubbles make for some really light waffles
 which were wonderful.
And even though there were 4 of us, the Professional Double Belgian Waffle Maker made them as fast as we could eat them.

As a final note, I wrote in my last post about our holiday tradition of making my Grandma's Coffee Cake.  Since we make it for Christmas, and it was not yet Christmas, I did not have a picture.  But Katie came through, and we had it for Christmas Brunch, and this is what it looked like (after we had been at it a while). 
So for 2012 keep your resolutions and your expectation modest, you will be happier for it.   For example, our resolution is to not lick the floor.


  1. I'm so jealous. I have a waffle maker, but it pales in comparison! Thanks for the recipe.

  2. Sounds like a very cool waffle maker!! You'll have to invite lots of friends over now and turn your kitchen into a breakfast diner & serve up lots of waffles. Thank you for the recipe! I've made yeasted pancakes which were super, but not tried yeasted waffles yet.