How such an important event slipped under my radar, I'll never know. The second week of September is, apparently, National Waffle Week. Although we should all be honoring this most important of breakfast foods all year long, this is the one time of the year when all good citizens take the time to give thanks to the waffle for all the pleasure it has given us.
As a lad, we were never served fresh, homemade waffles. My mother was too busy actually out earning money so we could afford frozen waffles. I didn't mind a bit. In my youth, frozen waffles were not the round Eggo's™ we have today. Nor did they come stuffed with various ingredients or in assorted flavors. The waffles we had were dinky little semi-flavorless rectanguloids that came six to a box. They were the only kind available back then. Once the mighty Eggo™-style waffle became popular, they disappeared from the marketplace. That's sort of a shame, as every now and again I get a nostalgic taste for them.
Truth be told though, to paraphrase Spencer Tracy, there is no such thing as a bad waffle. Fresh of frozen, or even stuffed with cream cheese and jelly, they are all magically delicious. I don't really like syrup on my waffles. I just like to smear them with butter, so all the pure waffle flavor comes through.
Of course, to truly celebrate this week, we should all make a batch of waffles from scratch. I realize making waffles from scratch is a major pain in the Butterworth. It's a lot of effort, and if you don't have an old fashioned waffle iron, the waffles don't come out quite right. It seems modern waffle irons are all of the non-stick variety, which, while making cleanup a breeze, prevents the waffle from becoming crunchy. To have a superior homemade waffle, you must find a pre-1970's waffle iron, and really grease it up good to prevent sticking. If the ancient wiring in your antique waffle iron doesn't burn the house down, you will be rewarded with a fantastic, crunchy waffle. Just like Mother never made.
I am fortunate enough that my Sister owns an old waffle maker, and actually enjoys making things from scratch. I believe she uses this recipe. Her waffles are truly top-notch. I would say that they are the best I ever had, but having been to Roscoe's Chicken and Waffles in Los Angeles, they are only a close second.
Now that I think of it, if you live in the area, Roscoe's is probably the ideal spot to celebrate this occasion. I would write more about the fabulous food at Roscoe's, but just thinking about it is making me drool, and since I am 3,000+ miles away, I don't want to torture myself.
My Sister's home would be another good spot to celebrate. Unfortunately she lives a few states away, and while my family puts up with a lot of my nonsense, a 4 hour trip for waffles is pushing it. I also suspect my Sister might not appreciate an unannounced visit from relatives demanding homemade waffles.
So I guess I will be celebrating with plain ol' Eggo's™ (since I don't think waffle fries count) this Holiday. When you think about it, though, it doesn't matter if you eat a waffle that's fresh or frozen. Holidays are really about celebrating special times with the ones you love.
Times like National Waffle Week.