I’ve been thinking about waffles, obsessively, for a few weeks now. Obviously, I generally think a lot about waffles, but these last few weeks have had me in overdrive. The more I work on them, the more ideas I have.

Chocolate waffles have long been a thorn in my side. Above all other varieties, I consider mastery of them to be mastery of the waffle craft. Why? Because to get a pronounced chocolate flavor – and to offset the bitterness of the cacao –  requires so much sugar  that, unless every single facet of the recipe is absolutely perfect, you will either burn the waffle, dry it out, or turn it into a limp piece of cake that’s merely imprinted with a waffle pattern.

My last experiment with chocolate waffles got me closer than I had ever come to preparing something delicious, but it still was far off the mark. Then I had a realization that simply upping the salt would amplify much of the chocolate flavor, while reducing the temperature would allow me to more efficiently crisp the waffle, without any risk of burning the sugars within. 

I just made the recipe below, and it’s one I’d be comfortable serving, However, I can still hone it. The texture is a little too dry, and the chocolate is not quite as pronounced as it could be – though it’s quite chocolately. A little more chocolate, cocoa, butter, and heat – and a little less salt and milk – should take it even closer to the ideal.

Chocolate Waffles

makes 2 round 1/2″ American-style waffles

30.0g 49% Maracaibo chocolate
31.0g egg (from an egg heated in a very warm water bath)

Preheat the waffle iron to 179°C/355°F

1. Begin melting the chocolate in a bain marie hot water bath. Set aside.

2. Sift all of the dry ingredients into a small/medium bowl.

3. Add the melted butter, melted chocolate, egg, vanilla and about 60g of the milk to the dry ingredients, and mix to just blend. Then add the remaining milk and finish blending.

4. Pour the mix into the preheated 1/2″ iron and cook for 4 minutes 40 seconds.

Remove the waffle from the iron and place on a wire rack to cool. When the waffle has cooled below 49°C/120°F, place the waffle back into the iron to cook for 10 seconds longer. Serve immediately.