It’s hard to imagine that something as commonplace as the waffle didn’t make it big in the United States until the 1960s—especially when its origin dates back to ancient Greece. The earliest waffles were called “obelios” and were cooked between two hot metal plates. Sometime during the 13th century, Europeans started stamping the cakes with motifs ranging from family crests, landscapes, and the characteristic grid pattern.
It was the Belgians, though, that perfected its recipe into something so delicious that their waffles were eaten by themselves – much unlike the loaded breakfast waffles Americans eat today. The Belgian waffle, originally known as the Brussels waffle, made its debut in America at the 1962 World Fair in Seattle. Not long after, Maurice Vermersch (a native Belgian) catapulted the waffle’s popularity at the 1964/1965 New York World’s Fair. The crispy and airy waffles were sold one of two ways: plain, or with strawberries and freshly whipped cream. The Vermersch family held their waffles to the highest Belgian standards. They refused to provide silverware to their customers, as that was not how waffles were eaten on the streets of Belgium.
Here in America, Belgian waffles have become a staple in diners and on breakfast menus. When compared to authentic Belgian waffles: where they lack in flavor in texture, they make up for with toppings and garnishes.
We’re serving up our own version of Belgian waffles at The Factory at brunch on Saturday, March 25th for International Waffle Day. We prefer our waffles with put up blueberry sauce, maple syrup, and freshly whipped cream. Pictured here on Heath Ceramics with our Top-Stitch Placemat in Dove, an Organic Cotton Jersey Napkin, vintage silver, and a Weck Jar.
P.S.: Find breakfast and brunch recipes, including a variation on the Belgian Waffle with hot dogs, chili, and slaw in John Currence’s Big Bad Breakfast.