Published November 1, 1993.
The best waffles are crisp on the outside and creamy on the inside, like a soufflé with crunch; the secret is buttermilk.
Many waffle batters are too thin, which results in a disappointing, gummy-textured waffle with a dry, unappealing interior.
Our ideal waffle has a crisp, well-browned exterior with a moist, fluffy interior. It should be like a rich, just-cooked soufflé encased in a flavorful crust.
We found that a thick batter lets the outside of the waffle become crisp while the inside remains custardy. We also determined that buttermilk is absolutely crucial. When combined with baking soda, it creates a much thicker batter than the alternative, sweet milk and baking powder. Because crispness is so important in waffles, we tried substituting cornmeal for a bit of the flour and found that 1 tablespoon per cup of flour adds extra crackle. Finally, the extra effort of separating the egg and then whipping the white and folding it into the batter proved worth the trouble. The waffle turns out fluffier inside; you can actually see pockets of air trapped inside when you cut into the cooked waffle.list of recipes