Liege Waffles - The Other Belgian Waffle
3 1/2 Cups AP Flour
1/2 tsp Kosher Salt
1 1/2 TB granulated sugar
1 pkg active dry Yeast
1 1/3 cup Unsalted Butter
200 ml or 13 1/2 TB Cold Sparkling Water
270 grams pearl sugar (About 8 1/4 oz)
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 cup Heavy Cream
2 TB Favorite liqueur (I used Nocello)
Allow eggs and sparkling water to come up to room temperature first.
Sift the flour and salt into a bowl, then make a well in the middle.
Melt the butter over hot water or in the microwave then allow to cool to lukewarm. (about 110)
Beat the eggs in another bowl, then add butter whisking to combine.
Sprinkle yeast over the top and whisk well.
Then add the sparkling water and whisk again.
Add the entire mixture to the flour along with the granulated sugar and vanilla extract.
Beat the dough for at least ten minutes. (I used the dough hooks to my hand mixer)
It will start out kind curdled looking, but will stiffen and become a slightly sticky brioche-ish type dough.
Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for 60 – 90 minutes. (I have a gas oven with a pilot light, so I use that)
Begin heating the waffle iron and add the Pearl Sugar to the dough.
Fold it in, actually, you kind of knead it in... Like I said, the dough is kind of in between a batter and a dough (like Brioche)
Drop by heaping 1/8th cup (About 3 TB) onto each quarter or section of the waffle iron (Mine is a double square, please adjust for round irons by dropping 1/4 cup in the center of the iron) and bake until well browned.
Serve hot off the iron, dusted with confectioner's sugar, or top with UNsweetened liqueured whipped cream. (I like the nut Liqueurs like Nocello, Frangelico, & Amaretto) Sprinkle with berries or nuts or both.
Pairs Well With
I have been itching to make Liege waffles for years, but have never been able to find Pearl Sugar. Granted I could order it over the net, but I hate paying shipping and handling on baking ingredients, Vanilla beans are one thing, Sugar is quite a bit heavier.
Recently, while hunting for Demerara Sugar, I was lucky enough to find some, quite by accident. I have since heard that Swedish Pearl Sugar may be found in some U.S. IKEA stores as well, although I have never seen it at the San Diego IKEA. Swedish Pearl sugar is smaller than the Belgian though. If you are desperate for Liege waffles it will work, but the Belgian Sugar is SO much better, it's worth the extra effort to find it.