Here’s something all breakfast, or anytime of the day connoisseurs should be made aware of, or at least be somewhat excited about. Today, August 24th, is NATIONAL WAFFLE DAY! So, why is it set during one of the hottest days of the year?  No rhyme or reason. It just happened to be the day innovative New Yorker, Cornelius Swarthout, received a patent for the first waffle iron in the U.S. back in 1869.


Who dreams of such a device? Well, Mr. Swarthout, of course, so to him and a  list of centurions, I am grateful for the option to put whatever I would like into each one of those tiny little waffle squares. You can’t do this with a pancake. Sure, toppings can sit on top of a pancake, hence the word toppings, but with a waffle you can place individual raspberries, blueberries, bananas, whipped cream and more into each one of those divine hollow squares. I prefer to slather butter and real maple syrup on my waffle creation, while others take a healthier approach by surpassing the slathering part altogether.


According to articles published online by Garry's Grill and Chicago Waffles, the history of this popular breakfast item dates back to ancient Greece, where flat cakes known as obelios were made using hot metal plates. The obelios wafers were a combination of flour, water, milk, and eggs, much like the ingredients used to make waffles today. The checkered design on waffles involved a technique that came about centuries later using a hinged iron with batter being poured and pressed together over an open fire. As for the origin of the word waffle, it was derived from the French term, guafre or wafla in Old English. Not long after, the Dutch created their own version of the waffle in a preferred rectangular or square shape.

It is estimated that every household in the United States has at least one waffle iron. After all, it is “almost” as common as using a coffee maker on any given morning. However, there are downright cheaters who have resorted to buying pre-made waffles in the freezer section of grocery stores. You know the type. They waltz into the store with dark sunglasses and possibly a wig, just so they don’t have to break a sweat when it comes to making fluffy, delicious waffles at home...or so I've heard. Alright, truth be told, I’ve been guilty of sticking a few frozen waffles in a toaster from time to time, but more so when my kids were  tykes and didn’t mind being fed disc-like treats morning, noon and night. Okay, that only happened once and then maybe another 7 or 12  times.


Regrouping back to the topic of National Waffle Day and the ultimate question; what do you like to put on your waffles and what are some of your favorite restaurants in the area to enjoy them? Indeed, another way to avoid the kitchen and the frozen disc option is to head to your favorite place that serves up incredible waffles. In the surrounding area, there are so many great places to enjoy waffles, including The Hanging Five and Oasis in Butte. I have also had the opportunity to indulge in the goodness of chicken and waffles at Roscoe's in Los Angeles and Sterling's in Kennewick, Washington. So, now that you know the backstory to National Waffle Day, time to "get your waffle on"! Hopefully you’re able to celebrate in the true tradition of heavenly consumption! Pass the syrup!

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