Vafler – a heart-warming Norwegian delicacy

There is no other dish that manifests the Norwegian hospitality and warmth better than Vafler – the heart-shaped waffles.

In Norway, waffles are usually consumed with the morning coffee and a newspaper but they could be described as a Norwegian version of the British afternoon tea. Freshly baked pastries are usually served with jam and cream but can also be served with cheese and other savoury side dishes.

According to the Norwegian Seamen’s Mission, Norwegian expatriates consider the heart-shaped waffles both the symbol of homesickness and a heart-warming delicacy. For over 150 years, visitors of the Mission have thought of them as a Norwegian trademark.

The first known recipes of waffle dough were found at the Kielland family’s library in Stavanger in the early 1700s. The waffle dough recipe contained wheat flour, sugar, butter and eggs as well as powdered cardamom, nutmeg, cloves, aniseeds and ginger. Many of these ingredients are still seen on waffle recipes of today. On the other hand, there are as many waffle recipes as there are waffle fryers.

Cheese waffles
8 to 10 pieces
2 eggs
3 dl milk
1 dl mineral water
3 dl wheat flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 dl oil
4 dl (approx. 200 g) Le Gruyére AOP cheese, grated
In addition
cold smoked salmon or gravlax
rucola or shoots
Le Gruyére AOP flakes
  1. Mix together the broken eggs, milk and mineral water. Mix the sugar, salt and baking powder with the wheat flour. Gradually add the flour into the egg-milk mixture with continuous stirring. Add the oil and mix until homogeneous.
  2. Allow the dough to rise for approx. half an hour.
  3. Heat the waffle iron. Add the grated cheese with stirring into the waffle dough just before frying. Fry the waffles until golden brown.
  4. Serve the cheese waffles with cold smoked salmon or gravlax, cheese flakes and fresh strawberries. Slightly sugar-coat the strawberries and drop in a bit of flake salt.
    You can also fry the waffles in advance and warm them in the oven, although this may compromise their crispiness.
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