Some hotels which offer hot breakfasts have waffle makers out for the guests to make their own Belgian waffles. Have you ever thought, “Wow, these make incredible waffles! I wish I had one of these at home!” Several years ago Waring started selling a similar type of waffle maker.
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Similar to the commercial units, the two ½-inch deep waffle grids sit on a base. A handle attached to the upper lid is lifted exposing the two grids. Batter is poured onto the bottom grid, top is closed and using the handle the grids are rotated 180 degrees. This locks the grids in place and prevents the lids from rising as the waffle bakes. Once rotated, a timer starts and when timer goes off, hopefully, your waffles are done. Turn the handle 180 degrees to open and remove the waffle. A drip tray on the base catches any falling batter to quicken cleanup.
More Detail on Use
The preferred setting on the browning control knob is #4, but this may be different based on how crisp and dark you like your waffles.
Beeps and indicator lights will let you know when waffles are done. The orange light on the base illuminates to let the user know that the waffle maker is heating up. When the unit is first plugged in and turned on for each baking session 6 beeps and a green light will let you know that the waffle maker is heated to the right temperature. Each time after the first waffle, 3 beeps and a green light will let you know that the waffles are ready.
There is a supplied measuring scoop to use with a line marking indicating how much batter to use. The amount of batter you put in the scoop is dependent on how thin or thick the batter is that you’re using. If not using the supplied scoop, Waring recommends ¾ cup batter or just enough to fill the entire lower grid.
When the waffles are ready, the unit beeps 3 times. At that point you can rotate the grids to open and remove the waffles with a heatproof plastic spatula.
Cleanup is sometimes a chore. Many people have written reviews on this waffle maker. Without reading any to see their opinions, I can say that due to the fact that we use so much oil to coat the grates (to keep waffles from sticking---see below) that cleanup is kind of a pain.
The Finished Product
I have to say that when using the right recipe or the right mix these waffles are as good as any from a restaurant or the hotel. I have used the recipe from the instruction booklet to make the batter from scratch and it does make the perfect waffle. We usually don’t have the time to make a yeast batter, so we use Krusteaz brand mix which we buy at Costco. I have seen the same mix in the grocery stores in smaller quantities. The kids love the finished product and whenever my daughter has her friends stay overnight they want the waffles the next morning.
The Sticky Truth
As much as I like the waffles from this I am most disappointed on how quickly the non-stick grids don’t seem to stay non-stick. This is the second unit we’ve bought. Understand that this unit was being used both days on weekends for several months. We DID follow the manufacturer’s instructions which suggest that before using this for the very first time, the user should season the grids by first preheating the waffle maker, brushing with cooking oil and then wiping with a paper towel. It didn’t seem to make any difference.
The grids on the first unit seemed to have gotten that sticky residue that I’ve often seen after using a non-stick pancake skillet over time. That first unit is sitting in a pile of stuff for a yard sale. I can't get the grates clean enough in order to make ANY waffles without them sticking.
I have been told that’s from the cooking sprays and the oils used in the sprays. For this unit I have not used the spray cans but rather use peanut oil which I believe has a higher burning point than the oils used in the spray cans. I can’t be sure. So we use a silicone brush and liberally coat the grids with the oil before cooking each waffle. We don't use cooking sprays any longer. Even with that, our waffles will sometimes still stick to the point where we have to turn off the waffle maker and take the plastic spatula to scrape out all the stuck pieces on the grids. I still haven’t figured out why we have that problem.
I wondered why I don't see guests at hotels having problems with their waffle makers. So one time I looked at the spray can the hotel had out for the guests to use. It was not an oil based spray. It is evidently only sold commercially because I have not been able to find it anywhere. It may also be because the ones in the hotels are sturdy commercial units which have grates which are well made with a much better non-stick surface.
Overall, I would recommend this product. The kids will love the waffles as will adults. The instruction manual has recipes for a few different types of waffles to get you started. The price has come down about $20 over the past few years when bought locally. The first one cost us about $70 and this last one cost $50.
Recipe for those who want to cook some great waffles
This is the basic waffle recipe from the instruction booklet:
CLASSIC BELGIAN WAFFLES
Classic Belgian waffles have a crispy outside and are soft
and moist on the inside.
Makes 10 waffles
1-1/2 cups water
2-1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (one packet)
3 cups sifted flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs, separated + 1 egg white
1/3 cup sugar
8 tablespoons unsalted butter - melted and cooled
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups whole milk
Heat 1/2 of the water to lukewarm, 105° - 110° F. Dissolve
the yeast in the water with a pinch of the sugar from the
recipe; let stand 5 to 10 minutes, until the mixture begins
Put the flour and salt into a large bowl; stir to blend and
reserve. Add the egg yolks, one of the egg whites, and
remaining sugar to the yeast mixture; stir to blend. Add the
remaining water, milk, melted butter, oil, and vanilla; stir
until the mixture is smooth. Stir the liquid mixture into the
flour mixture and beat until the mixture is smooth.
Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold the egg
whites gently into the batter. Let the batter stand for
1 hour, stirring every 15 minutes.
Preheat your Waring Pro® Belgian Waffle Maker on setting
#4 or preferred setting (green indicator light will be
illuminated when preheated).
For best results, do not open waffle maker during cooking
process. Doing so will offset the timing mechanism.
Use the measuring scoop to measure the batter and pour
into the preheated waffle iron. Use a heat-proof spatula to
spread the batter evenly over the grids. Close lid and rotate
wafflemaker 180° to the right. Bake the waffles in the waffle
iron until beeper indicates that the waffle is done. Rotate
waffle maker 180° to the left. Remove waffle and repeat
until all batter is used. Waffles may be kept warm in a slow
(200°F) oven. Place waffles arranged on a cookie sheet on
a rack in the warm oven. Serve with whipped cream, fruit,
jam, powdered sugar, or a warm fruit syrup.
*We recommend using setting #4 to achieve a golden
brown baked Belgian waffle. Adjust the browning control
if you prefer lighter or darker waffles.
Nutritional Information (per waffle):
Calories 300 (40% from fat) • Carb. 37g • Pro. 8g
Fat 13g • Sat. fat 7g • Chol. 94mg • Sod. 104mg
Calc. 61mg • Fiber 1g
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Amount Paid (US$): 49.99