Did The Greeks Use Waffle Irons?
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Ancient Greek culture is one of many across the world that has contributed to the development of modern science and invention. From the alarm clock to the advanced art of storytelling and the Hippocratic Oath—medical ethics and standards named after the Greek physician Hippocrates—the Greeks have had a large impact on modern culture.

But wait, that’s not the end of the list of inventions by them; they are credited with having discovered everyone's favorite breakfast item: waffles, and ancient Greek households even had their own waffle irons!

The origin of waffle irons

Waffles were created some 4,000 years ago when hot stones were used to flip the cakes and ensure both sides were warmed. Obleios, or wafers, were made in several forms in ancient Greece and the Middle Ages. The first waffle recipe was created in the late 14th century, but it did not include a leavening agent. What we now recognize as a waffle originated in the fifteenth century, when the grid pattern of cooking was established and leavening became a process they utilized.

Waffles were sold on the streets as early as 1603, but they first came to America with the Dutch immigrants settling in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania in the 17th century. The word "waffle" was first used in 1725. Waffle recipes spread through England and America in the 17th century and were based on Dutch, French, and Belgian recipes.

The Greeks invented the waffle iron!

Waffle irons were invented by the Athenians, but they were flat and smooth rather than spiked with tiny cubes like we do now. The practice of making waffles was soon adopted by the Catholic Church and featured religious decorations. 

Waffle irons were patented by Cornelius Swartwout of Troy, NY, on August 24, 1869. In the early 1900s, General Electric's electric waffle iron was introduced, and it soon became a common kitchen appliance by the 1930s. 

In 1953, the Dorsa brothers invented frozen waffles and called them Eggo. Frozen waffles are now available whenever we're pressed for time or if the kids are hungry and we can't make them ourselves.

What is the difference between a Belgian waffle and a regular one?

The most significant difference between Belgian waffle makers is in the waffle maker itself. Belgian waffle makers are larger and have larger squares in them, allowing you to collect all the savory maple syrup pools. Another difference is that Belgian waffles are not traditionally served with maple syrup!

How did Belgium waffles become so popular?

Belgians are famous for beer and chocolate, but waffles are their country's hallmark. It's a small state between France, Germany, and the Netherlands, and its unique beer and chocolate production make it a big draw.

Waffles are a sweet delicacy in Belgium, eaten by hand. Belgian waffles were first served at the 1962 World's Fair in Seattle, but they were most popular at the 1964–65 World's Fair in Queens, NY, where they were served plain and decorated with sliced strawberries and whipped cream. From then on, they have been growing in popularity in the U.S. and elsewhere.

3 tips to make a perfect waffle

Nowadays, there are many ways to make waffles with a premix by combining water, eggs, and oil, but the best waffles are made from scratch at home. Here are a few things people have learned along the way, and if you pay attention, you can be a waffle-making champion:

    When pouring your waffle batter into your waffle maker, make sure it is lumpy rather than smooth. If you work the flour too much, your waffles will be tough and won't rise as much as you need them to.

    You must measure the flour properly if you want good, fluffy waffles. Too much flour, and your waffles will be dry and dense, even if you do not overmix them. You will have flimsy little waffles if you don't have enough flour.

    Make sure your waffle iron is hot before using it. Your waffle will cook faster and more evenly, giving it the crispy edges we all like.

Can you make waffles ahead of time?

Making waffle batter ahead of time and cooking the waffles just before serving is a great strategy for producing make-ahead waffles. You can prepare the batter according to the recipe and keep it refrigerated for up to one week.

How to Store Waffles

After eating the waffles, transfer them to an airtight container. Store them in the refrigerator for up to three days. To make the best use of the waffles, heat them in a toaster or toaster oven.

Can You Freeze Waffles?

You can freeze waffles for up to three months. Position them in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze for several hours or up to a week. When they are frozen solid, transfer them to an airtight container or freezer-safe bag. They do not have to be thawed; just re-heat them before eating them.