We’re excited about wafers.
Our skilled blacksmith Richard, of Keystone Forge, made us a wafer iron based on an extant one and at Rowany Festival, we tried it out.
I had previously looked up wafer receipes before (Le Menagier de Paris lists 4, 2 without cheese) but we ended up trying it with The Medieval Kitchen’s version The Medieval Kitchen.
The Medieval Kitchen’s version is a basic one – flour, sugar and chilled water. (I looked this up, apparently it’s to stop the fat from melting? Must learn more)
So first step, heating the iron. We (Richard) started a fire and then held the iron over the flames. I estimated we held it over the flames for about 3 minutes, flipping the irons over after 2.
We really should have had oil, but we had butter. So we opened the irons and spread the butter with a spoon. The irons were hot enough that the butter immediately began to sizzle. The irons then went back into the fire.
The mix was then added to the irons. First thing that went wrong. I did not add enough of the batter to the irons in the first go and had to scoop more in. This caused the irons to get colder. The result was a kind of rubbery not golden brown and it wouldn’t get golden brown.
Second batch, we used a little less butter, with just the bottom waffle pattern being greased, used a ladle to scoop as much in as possible as fast as possible and bamn. Waffle turned out to be a little more golden. The pattern didn’t come out as well but there wasn’t enough butter to fill the irons.
Tips we were given by Mistress Rowan
- Brush oil on quickly and pour batter in while irons are still hot.
- Have a rest for the iron to sit on as you want to be able to reproduce the results.
- Sugar burns easily so for learning, a receipe without sugar is best.
Le Menagier de Paris Translation by Janet Hinson
Waffles are made in four ways. In the first, beat eggs in a bowl, then salt and wine, and add flour, and moisten the one with the other, and then put in two irons little by little, each time using as much batter as a slice of cheese is wide, and clap between two irons, and cook one side and then the other; and if the iron does not easily release the batter, anoint with a little cloth soaked in oil or fat. – The second way is like the first, but add cheese, that is, spread the batter as though making a tart or pie, then put slices of cheese in the middle, and cover the edges (with batter: JH); thus the cheese stays within the batter and thus you put it between two irons. – The third method, is for dropped waffles, called dropped only because the batter is thinner like clear soup, made as above; and throw in with it fine cheese grated; and mix it all together. – The fourth method is with flour mixed with water, salt and wine, without eggs or cheese.
Item, waffles can be used when one speaks of the “large sticks” which are made of flour mixed with eggs and powdered ginger beaten together, and made as big as and shaped like sausages; cook between two irons.
Wafers are also extensively mentioned throughout the translation in the menu and quantities listed. Are they different? I’m not sure.
Pictures to come later.
Edit 23 April 2018: More wafer experiments occur!Wafers Part 2