They call this the “secret” Belgian waffle. Also known as a Liège waffle, it’s chewy, fluffy, coated in crispy caramel, and studded with sugar pearls. Topped with juicy strawberries, it’s a waffle dream come true.
I first had one from the Wafels & Dinges truck in NYC. Le Pain Quotidien has them on their breakfast menu (ask for extra berries). But they are also so easy to make at home — maybe that’s the real secret.
(adapted from not martha via Sparrows & Spatulas)
Makes 8-12 waffles.
6 TB warm milk (barely warmer than body temp.)
1/2 tsp. sugar
2 tsp. instant or active dry yeast
1.5 c. bread flour
1 tsp. cinnamon (optional)
2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. salt
1 egg + 1 yolk
1/2 c. unsalted butter, at room temp.
3/4 c. Belgian pearl sugar (or 1/2 c. Swedish sugar)
Stir the sugar into the milk. Add the yeast and let sit for 5 minutes. In a large bowl, mix the flour and salt together. Pour in the yeast, egg, yolk, and vanilla and mix until a stiff dough forms. Cover and let rise in a warm spot for at least 30 minutes.
After the rest, use a large spatula to fold/beat the butter into the dough until it is smooth and elastic. Gently knead in the pearl sugar. Divide the dough into 8 to 12 patties. Let these sit for at least 15 minutes.
Preheat the waffle iron, butter as necessary. Sugar burns suck so use a turner to get the waffles in and out of the iron. Cook each waffle 3 minutes. If you have an iron that flips, do so every 30 seconds.
I held the done ones in the oven (preheat to 200ºF). I also halved this recipe, substituting 1 egg for the 1 egg + yolk, which worked just fine, unless you ask le bf, who wanted more waffles (always).
If you’re looking for the Brussels-style waffle, Marion Cunningham’s recipe is here.