Happy Summer Solstice! It’s a rainy overcast day here in Southern California, which doesn’t quite make it feel like the first day of summer….haha. We went to the DMV early this morning to get in line before it opened. We both needed to transfer our Minnesota driver’s licenses back to California licenses. I was hoping that the rain would deter other residents from going to the DMV this morning, but that was certainly not the case. The line was already around the corner by the time we arrived half an hour before opening time. Thankfully the wait wasn’t too bad and things moved quickly once the doors opened.
I brought our old California licenses along because I figured it would be helpful to have those license numbers (and it was), but they also provided some good laughs. In my picture, I was 15 1/2 years old, I had braces, I am as tan as can be (Alex said that I looked like a little pumpkin), there is sweat on my face and my hair is tightly pulled back in a ponytail because I had come straight from tennis practice. No one told me that they were going to take my picture when I went to get my driver’s permit! Alex’s picture highlights how long his neck is and he has his little jedi braid sticking out from the side. Needless to say, we were both hoping to have better pictures this time around!
Things went pretty smoothly with minimal wait times, or so I thought. When we got home I noticed that our temporary licenses were different. Upon further comparison, I realized that they had given me a driver’s permit - you know, the one that says you can only drive with a licensed driver over the age of 18. Haha what?? Apparently, at one point, they forgot to write down that I already had a license. I had to drive all the way back to the DMV. Thankfully I just bypassed the line and walked straight up to the where they issue the temporary licenses and got the issue resolved quickly.
But let’s get back to SUMMER! I don’t know about you, but coconut is one of my favorite summertime flavors. It is so refreshing and makes me feel like I am being transported to a tropical beach. Pulling inspiration from our Asia trip (hint: there are a couple more Asia-influenced coconut recipes coming soon!) and seeing the plethora of fresh, cold young coconuts there, I wanted to put a fun twist on one of my favorite past recipes - Belgian liège waffles.
If you have never had a liège waffle before, trust me when I say that they are wonderful. What makes a liège waffle so different from a regular waffle? Well, not only are liège waffles made from a yeast based dough, but that dough also has small pearl sugars infused throughout, so when cooked, the pearls create a lovely crunch and burst of sweetness. That being said, you will typically find liège waffles half the size of a normal waffle as they are much richer and sweeter.
Like I mentioned already, this waffle recipe is made from a yeast based dough. You will need to allow the dough to rise for 2 hours prior to cooking, or you can let the dough rise overnight so that it is ready the next morning. The strong coconut flavoring of these waffles comes from both coconut milk and coconut oil in the batter, and is further enhanced with a coconut milk based cream topping. This recipe is truly perfect for a fancy brunch or a special breakfast for two!
Belgian Coconut Liège Waffles with a Coconut Cream Topping
Cook time:Serves: 16
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- 1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon sugar, divided
- 1 packet active dry yeast
- 3 1/4 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup coconut oil, liquid-form
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup Belgian pearl sugars
Coconut Cream Topping Ingredients:
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- 2 1/2 Tablespoons sugar
- 1/4 cup cold water
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
- Pinch of salt
- In a small bowl, heat the coconut milk to 105F - 115F. Stir in 1 teaspoon sugar. Sprinkle the yeast on top. Allow the yeast to sit for 1 minute before stirring. Let the mixture sit for 5 more minutes. The yeast should become foamy; however, if you don't see any foam, the yeast is likely dead, so start over with a new packet.
- Fit an electric mixer with the paddle attachment. Combine the flour, 1 Tablespoon sugar, and salt. Make a well in the middle, add the yeast mixture. Whisk until it starts to combine.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, coconut oil, and vanilla until well combined.
- Fit the electric mixer with the bread hook. With the speed on low, add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture. Increase speed to medium, and knead for 7 minutes, until smooth and sticky.
- Lightly oil the inside of a large bowl. Transfer the dough to the bowl. Cover with plastic wrap. Let rise for 2 hours or overnight (*).
- Crush the Belgian pearl sugars until smaller in size. (*)
- Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface. In small batches, knead the crushed pearl sugars into the dough. Let rest for 10 minutes. Prep the waffle iron.
- Cut the dough into 16 equal pieces. Roll the pieces into balls. Cook the pieces, one at a time, by placing in the center of the waffle iron. Cook until golden and cooked through.
- Make the coconut cream topping. Over medium heat, heat the coconut milk and sugar in a small saucepan until the sugar has dissolved. In a small bowl, stir together the cornstarch and water. Add to the coconut milk, and add in the salt. Whisk together until it starts to boil. Reduce the heat to low, and allow to simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Top the waffles with the coconut cream topping and (optional) additional coconut flakes. Store the remaining waffles and coconut topping in separate airtight containers in the refrigerator.
(*) Baker’s Notes:
- For the pearl sugars, I used these.
- If you choose to refrigerate the dough overnight, allow the dough to sit at room temperature for at least an hour the next day.
- When cooking the waffles, to keep the waffles you’ve already made warm, place them in the oven set to 200F.