kim hendrickson, salvia press, waffle recipe, dutch waffles, waffelen, st. nicholas day
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  The Tea House Times Guest Blog - Kim Hendrickson
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ST. NICK CELEBRATION THE OLD FASHIONED WAY by Kim Hendrickson

Monday, November 30th 2015 @ 12:00 AM

15 years ago, I was asked to speak to a local history group on 1600's Dutch Cooking. When they asked me to cook a traditional Dutch wafelen (Dutch waffles) over an open hearth in one of the oldest buildings in Bergen County for their annual St. Nick's Day event, I thought I had died and gone to heaven!

Cooking in a wood fired stove is not as easy as it sounds no matter how much I may love it. Just holding this heavy cast iron "sandwich" iron open while the batter is placed in the center is a challenge enough, but after four hours of kneeling in front of an open hearth to judge the heat of the fire before the iron is placed on the coals, then watching to make sure each waffle is cooked to perfection is challenging.  It's the day after aches and pains that makes you think you might not go back next year, but its really so much fun that by the time the day is over I am already a planning for next years event.   It wasn't until years later when I described the event to a friend that I realized I might be the only person that thinks this kind of annual tradition is a complete blast after he looked at me and said, "Kim, how can you think that standing for hours in front of a smoky fire, red faced, lifting cast-iron is fun?" 

The first year or so, I tried to prepare too many traditional foods: stew, waffles and cookies.  Over time I learned that preparing waffles gave the kids who came an opportunity to participate by spooning the batter on to the iron, then waiting and watching as the waffle browned. Back then, waffles were a side dish eaten with applesauce, so that's how I serve them, in my traditional costume, beside a wood burning oven.

Pretending to go back in time to cook and enjoy a true St. Nicholas Day celebration is not only a chance to give back to the community I live in, turns out, its a tradition I simply cannot do without.

I've include the original recipe for you to try.  It's from the 1600's and is the most delicious waffle you will ever eat. Make a bunch in advance, freeze them and pull them out to just crisp in the toaster oven to impress and unexpected guest. There is only one downside to serving them; your guest may never leave!

Happy St. Nicholas Day!

 

WAFELEN (soft waffles)

2 cups flour

1/2 teaspoon soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 egg yolks, beaten

1 1/2 cups buttermilk

6 tablespoons butter, melted 

2 egg whites

Heat a waffle iron.* Sift the flour, soda, baking powder, sugar and salt together. 

In a medium bowl, combine the eggs, buttermilk and melted butter together. Add the dry ingredients to combine. 

Beat the egg whites to stiff peaks in a separate bowl. Fold the stiff egg whites into the mixture until smooth. 

Makes about 8 waffles. 

 

* If you don't have a waffle iron, treat the batter like pancake batter. Make small pancakes, so you have lots of crispy edge and serve; shape won't get in the way of flavor! 


~ Kim Hendrickson, Salvia Press

 

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KIM HENDRICKSON, author of the Tastefully Small cookbook series, has been teaching for nearly twenty years. A regular instructor at the John C. Campbell Folk School, she is a frequent speaker at culinary events throughout the U.S.  She has catered for The Travel Channel’s Bizarre Food Show, the New York Metropolitan Opera, the Penguin Repertory Theater. And TV’s “Slangman”, David Burke. Kim's book, "Finger Sandwiches", is the only one of its kind, dedicated exclusively to a celebration of unique and flavorful tea sandwiches, and her "Savory Bites" and "Dessert Canapes" books help round out the Tastefully Small series to make any gathering both fun and delicious. If Kim has one abiding passion, it’s helping people find their inner chef.  From the importance of selecting the proper ingredients, to garnish and plating ideas, to shortcuts that can help reduce the stress of planning an event, the sole aim of Kim’s passion for food and teaching is to make sure it’s as much about the joy of creating something beautiful as it is sharing that food with others. See http://www.SalviaPress.com

   

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