Another one of the fantastic cooking-related gifts I received for Christmas was an awesome waffle maker from Ben.  I already had a waffle maker but it just wasn’t doing it for me – it never seemed to cook the waffles consistently and the pockets it created were very small and shallow.  Also, it only made one waffle at a time which is not the best scenario for preparing breakfast for more than two people.  I LOVE my new waffle maker.  It make four waffles at a time, and they have the large, deep pockets that I adore.

We tested it out with our usual plain waffle recipe, and then Ben asked if I could make chocolate chip waffles.  Why not?  This recipe sounded great and as an added bonus, it used up most of the mini-chocolate chips I had on hand.  We made these the morning after my brothers spent the night and they were enjoyed by all.  They were just perfect with a fresh strawberry topping and a dollop of whipped cream.  We made a double batch to ensure that we would have enough to feed five people, and ended up with a lot of leftover waffles.  We froze them and I am looking forward to having another later this week :)  I am so glad Ben suggested this breakfast, it was an excellent idea!

Best of 2008 – Breakfast Items
Homemade Bagels
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins
Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Muffins
Cranberry Scones
Raspberry Muffins
Banana Crumb Muffins

Chocolate Chip Waffles
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 large egg white, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups milk, at room temperature
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted, plus more for brushing the iron
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup mini-chocolate chips

Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl.

Separate the 2 eggs and put all of the egg whites (3 total) in a large bowl.

In a large liquid measuring cup or bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, milk, vanilla and 1/4 cup melted butter.  Whisk the milk mixture into the flour mixture until a batter is formed.  Take care not to over-mix the batter.

Whip the egg whites with an electric mixer until they just begin to hold a loose peak.  Scatter the sugar over the whites and continue beating until they hold a soft peak.  Fold a third of the egg whites into the batter to lighten the base, then fold in the remaining whites.  Gently fold in the chocolate chips.

Preheat a waffle iron to medium high.  Brush the inside surface of the waffle iron with melted butter.  Pour in enough batter to barely fill each hole of the waffle iron (keeping in mind that the batter will spread once the lid is closed).  Close the iron and cook until crisp and the waffle iron stops steaming, about 5 minutes.  Serve as the waffles come off the iron or transfer to a dish in the oven heated to 200 degrees F.  Repeat with the remaining batter.

Source: adapted from Food Network Kitchens