Vanilla Bean Strawberry Waffles

Who can resist a heavenly sweet strawberry waffle! This one is amped up with vanilla bean, a simple strawberry topping and whipped cream!

1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 vanilla bean
1 case of strawberries, stemmed and sliced
7 Tbsp sugar, divided
3 large eggs, separated
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

Whipped cream:
1 cup heavy cream
2 Tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

In a small saucepan heat the milk over medium heat until bubbles form around the edges. Remove from heat. Split vanilla bean in half lengthwise (long ways) and use a small knife to scrape the fragrant mush into the milk. Add the vanilla pod and let stand 30-60 minutes. (I’ve made these waffles waiting only 20 minutes, waiting a timed 30 minutes and waiting nearly an hour. The vanilla bean in the waffles are most distinct after the hour of soaking. Not worth wasting a very expensive, delicate ingredient if you don’t take the full hour to marinade.)

In a medium bowl, toss the strawberries and 4 tablespoons of the sugar. Macerate, stirring occasionally, until the berries soften and form a syrup, about 30 minutes.

Preheat waffle maker. (We used our Japanese egg waffle maker for this round of photos but a regular Belgian waffle maker works perfectly as well.)

In the bowl of a stand mixer using the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites on medium high speed until fluffy soft peaks form. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons sugar and whip until firm peaks form, 2-3 minutes.

Remove the vanilla pod and place the infused milk in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the egg yolks and the butter.

In a large bowl (yes, lots of bowls!), mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and pour in the milk mixture, stirring until just combined. Gently fold in the egg whites.

Ladle the batter into the waffle maker according the waffle maker instructions. Cook until waffles are crisp and browned, 3-4 minutes. A trick I’ve learned is when the waffle maker stops steaming, the waffle is ready!

To make the whipped cream, in a bowl for a hand mixer, whip the cream on medium high speed until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes. Add the sugar, and vanilla and whip until firmer peak forms, 1-2 minutes.

To remove the waffle, use a spatula. Serve right away with strawberry syrup mixture and whipped cream. No actual store bought syrup is needed. These are full of flavor and sweet enough! Enjoy!

Chef Willman

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