Sunday, December 7, 2008

Stroopie Waffles

A dutch favorite...and one of mine! My temporary home in NJ has plenty of Indian Markets and a great Asian Market as well, but I miss the stores where every ilse is like taking a trip to another country, like Central Market in my home state Texas. My son in Missouri took me to this market he loves (off Grand) with all its Asain ingredients he loves to cook with.

When I turned the corner and saw these packages of gooey goodness on the shelf...I heard a little devil on my shoulder say "Go ahead buy all six bags of know you love them"! I would rather pick up one every blue moon to enjoy and resisted...with one in hand I hurried down and around to the next country...

The history of the Stroopwafel goes back until 1784. A baker from Gouda baked a waffle of old crumbs and spices and filled this waffle with syrup. The Stroopwafel was born. In fact the Stroopwafel was a rest product. And therefor a popular pastry among the poor. During 1784 the Stroopwafel was only known in Gouda. Nowadays every bakery in Gouda has its own recipe.

Traditional Syrup Waffles (Stroopwafels) are made with two thin wafle-type wafers that have a very special caramel filling. Sometimes hazelnuts or honey, or other flavors are added to the filling. The waffle is cooked at a very high temperature on a waffle iron then sliced in half. The syrup then spread on and the two halves come together again. The best way to eat a Stroopwafel is either at room temperature, or to heat it in the microwave for just a few seconds.

I remember traveling to Amsterdam when I was 22, and how in the open markets and on corners they had these street vendors selling cones full of crispy hot fries that came with mayonaise, but what got to me was the smell of the small round waffles being made right there on propane waffle irons to order. Watching them drizzle the syrup into the middle, then pressing them together for a long line of Stroopie heads like me. Next time you go to the ice cream joint that makes fresh waffle cones...take a whif...then try to imagine what I remember...and don't forget to walk along the canals while you are eating them with the envious looks on the boat passengers as they go by...