To make a good waffle, what do we need?" asked the interviewer, answered promptly and honestly with "Love." He was interviewing, of course, Melbourne's favourite waffle master, Marc Laucher of bubbling busy 'Waffle On' at Degraves Street.
Admittedly, a waffle making machine also came in handy that day, but our waffles were certainly not short of Marc's suggested ingredient.
I came together with my brother and a good friend who had lived and studied in Belgium for some time in her life. She had bought a waffle-maker years ago, and what a beautiful little machine it was. With 180 degree spin for even cooking!
Liège waffles are the more popular variety in Belgium, thought to have originated in the 18th Century. They have since been delighting waffle-lovers all over the world, inspiring our little cooking session.
In all honesty, we were missing a vital ingredient. Liège waffles are known to contain the special 'pearl sugar' which Marc himself cannot even find in Melbourne, but must import from Belgium! For our purposes, a simple Google search of 'pearl sugar replacement' gave us the grand idea of crushing sugar cubes into small clusters. And then we were ready.
It was surprisingly simple to make. I was a little sceptical when we had to knead 3 eggs (Sirs Eggbert the 1st, 2nd and 3rd) into a slightly hard ball of dough. But with a little persistence (ignoring the ugly, sticky mess) and endless kneading jokes ("we should write all of these down".... "we don't knead to").... we finally had our batter.
I think a little secret to our success was letting the dough rest and waiting for it to double in size as dictated by the recipe. Patience isn't a virtue of mine, but good company kept me distracted enough to let the waffle dough bloom.
Painted skilfully with melted chocolate and fresh strawberries, I can safely say we had ourselves a huge Liège waffle success. And the reason I write this article is to tell you that you can too!
Get yourself a waffle machine, grab a few friends and make an afternoon of it. Marc knows it; food is love- and so much more fun when shared with friends; process and all. Have a look at Marc's recipe and listen to the radio interview (French Radio SBS). Go chat to him, tell him about your experience- he loves talking to everyone about everything! See how many kneading jokes you can make, Google the difference between Liège and Brussels waffles and ponder the different toppings you can decorate your work of art with. Just waffle on Melbourne.
PS- a word of advice - be careful when applying butter to burning hot waffle irons. We suffered a casualty:
Do you still have a copy of this recipe at all? The links you've posted are no longer valid and i remember making this exact recipe straight from the sbs site before they presumably removed it. It was great and i would love to make them again!