Belgium is known for its culinary excellence and one will invariably think of Mussels, Fries, Chocolate and Waffles when speaking of Belgium. In the Spring of 2015, a Belgian entrepreneur came up with the idea of bringing together the best of two worlds. Fries and Waffles which, in his native language, became what is known today as “Wafelfrietjes” or Waffle-Fries. Unlike the renowned fries, the waffle fries are not made of potatoes and fried in oil but, instead, they are made of the same batter as the “Brussels” waffle, baked in an iron cast waffle iron and served in a paper cone, as are the traditional fries. The mayonnaise and ketchup are replaced by powder sugar, whipped cream, and Belgian chocolate. But the list of possible toppings is endless. In the summer of 2016, the “wafelfrietjes” were successfully presented at the Tomorrowland festival in Belgium and were nominated as the most innovative festival food by Gault and Millau, the influential French restaurant guide. The “Brussels” waffle and its toppings finally served in a practical manner for those who want to keep on the move…
The "Brussels" Waffle
Originally showcased in 1958 at the World Fair “Expo 58” in Brussels, Belgian waffles had their American debut at the Century 21 Exposition in Seattle, WA in 1962. The Belgian waffles were further popularized in the United States when these were brought to the 1964 New York World's Fair at Flushing Meadows Park, USA, by Maurice Vermersch of Brussels, Belgium. Today, Belgian waffles are found throughout the world and the United States is certainly not an exception.
Here is yet another waffle baked following one of Grandma’s recipes, the Vanilla Waffle. My grandmother’s house always smelled like a bakery with scents of vanilla, sugar, and baked flour. I’ll always remember the large thin box on the countertop in her kitchen, the one filled with delicious vanilla waffles. After gobbling down a few (usually too many), my grandmother had to put the thin box out of my reach. As I grew up, I helped her making them and kept the recipe in my personal notebook. One thing is sure, these vanilla waffles are great for everyone and at any time throughout the day. I bake these often and they always put smiles on everybody’s face. No matter how many I bake, they seem to disappear in no time. One can’t get a nicer compliment.
Almond Ginger Bites
For choco-holics and other chocolate lovers only!
To make a chocolate mousse we prefer using a bittersweet Belgian chocolate that is high in pure chocolate (at least 54.5 percent cocoa solids), thereby preserving a deep chocolate flavor and a great texture for the chocolate mousse.
When melted and whisked with eggs, sugar, and fluffy beaten egg whites, the texture of the chocolate mousse becomes very light but yet a spoon stuck in the middle of the bowl will stand. Once your first spoonful reaches your taste buds, it takes a lot of self-discipline to stop before the bowl is empty. At Karo’s Belgian Sweets we decided not add any cream to the recipe, thereby enhancing the taste of the Belgian chocolate and allowing the chocolate mousse to be kept in the refrigerator for several days (for anyone who can do that).