Here in the Bergisches Land of Germany a popular food tradition is to have a sweet treat in the mid-afternoon with friends and/or family. We have been invited over many times, on the weekends, to my mother in law’s house for coffee and cake or as is commonly found in most restaurants in this area just outside of Cologne and East of the Rhine, waffles. I was surprised to find that waffles were not a breakfast item on the menu here but rather an afternoon nosh. Waffles are served so commonly here that it’s hard to find a restaurant that doesn’t offer them and many establishments will often tout the quality of their waffles and what they serve with them. Some places serve nothing more than waffles of all kinds with numerous different fillings and toppings and, of course, the standard accompaniment of a Kännchen Kaffee or Tee. It is a nice and relaxing after lunch but before dinner tradition that can get overlooked if you are a visitor just passing through or you don’t have the pleasure of being invited out by a local for the customary afternoon treat. If you happen to be in this area, however, a favorite place of ours that serves up the tastiest waffles with cherries and whipped cream is a little Fachwerkhaus/restaurant called “Lindenwirtin” located in the countryside hamlet of Scherf. You can sit outside the restaurant and enjoy your waffles whilst gazing out over the peaceful hillside view of rolling pastures filled with grazing cows, densely contrasting forests of pine and the occasional hilltop village that dots the landscape.
Waffles with Cherries and Cream
For the Waffles
Recipe from the Dr. Oetker Schulkochbuch
125 grams (1 stick plus 1 tbs) Butter
25-50 grams (1/8 – 1/4 cup) Sugar
1 package Vanilla-Sugar (or 1 tsp vanilla extract)
3 Free range eggs
200 grams (about 1 1/2 cups) Flour
50 grams (about 1/2 cup) Cornstarch
6 grams (about 2 teaspoons) Baking powder
About 1/4 liter (1 cup) milk
1/2 a Vial (or 1/4 tsp) of Dr. Oetker Rum aroma *optional*
In a large bowl beat the butter on high with an electric hand mixer until it’s soft and pale and then gradually add the sugar, vanilla sugar, eggs and rum aroma and mix on medium speed until well blended. In a separate small bowl mix together the flour, baking powder and cornstarch. Add the flour mixture and milk to the butter mixture alternately in batches and blend at a medium to medium-high speed. Blend in enough milk until the batter is just about to become runny. Makes about 10-12 medium sized waffles.
For the Cherries
680 gram jar pitted Morello cherries with juice*
2 tablespoons flour
1-2 tablespoons cornstarch
*You can use a similar type of cherry in juice or more or less cherries depending on what is available to you. This amount made quite a bit of cherries. Enough for about 6 servings.
Mix all the ingredients together well in a small sauce pan and cook on high until the cherries come to a boil, stirring constantly to prevent clumping. Then reduce the heat to medium and simmer while stirring until the desired consistency is reached.
For the Whipped Cream
1 cup heavy cream
1 package vanilla sugar (or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract plus 2-4 tablespoons sugar or powdered sugar)
Mix all ingredients together in a deep bowl and whip on high with a hand blender until stiff peaks form. Refridgerate if not using immediately.