Jazz Up Your Favorite Waffles With A Bit Of Malted Milk Powder

Waffles with fresh fruit
Waffles with fresh fruit - Jmichl/Getty Images

When done right, simple, classic waffles can feel like one of the most ingenious creations in the culinary world. Maybe it's the shape, with their sunken squares for catching syrup, and crisp ridges for textural contrast with a light and fluffy interior. Maybe it's the versatility, that you can have them as a breakfast food topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit, or for dinner with fried chicken and maple syrup. Maybe it's the near-magic of making waffles, with a special press that makes the whole affair feel like an occasion, even if it's just an average Sunday. But as wonderful as waffles can be, there is still a way to make them even better. Adding just a bit of malted milk powder to your batter will elevate each bite to a whole new level.

Not only does the malted milk powder add a layer of caramel-like complexity to the flavor of the waffle, but thanks to the lactose inherent to the ingredient, a little bit goes a long way toward promoting the toastiness and crispness in your waffles, too. Because of the milk element, you should also expect a slightly creamy texture. And if you love a classic maple syrup pairing, you'll find the toasty, malted sweetness pairs perfectly with your sticky, sappy topping.

Read more: Cake Hacks Every Baker Will Wish They Knew Sooner

What To Keep In Mind When Adding Malted Milk Powder To Waffles

Malted milk powder in a scoop
Malted milk powder in a scoop - Michelle Lee Photography/Shutterstock

When malted barley is combined with wheat and evaporated milk, and then pulverized into a powder, you have the basis for malted milk powder. The stuff is nutty and sweet in a way that evokes butterscotch or caramel, but with a depth of flavor and a touch of savoriness that makes it such a versatile and compelling ingredient in many applications. Because of its digestive properties, malted milk powder was initially marketed for health benefits, but quickly became a favorite of soda fountains and their jerks, who found an audience that loved the flavor of a milkshake made with a scoop or two of the stuff. The rest is waffle-worthy history.

When purchasing malted milk powder, know that not all options are created equal. It's common to confuse the classic chocolate and vanilla Ovaltine canisters with malted milk powder. While the nostalgic, brand-name drink does contain malted milk powder, Ovaltine is a "malt mix" that contains other ingredients and flavorings and is really meant to be consumed in drink form. True malted milk powder like the kind packaged and produced by Carnation, Horlick's, or King Arthur Baking Company is more well-suited for cooking and baking.

More Ways To Waffle With Malted Milk Powder

Brownie waffles on slate board
Brownie waffles on slate board - Elena Hramova/Shutterstock

Malted milk powder is probably most notable for its connection to those milkshake creations, known simply as "malts." It's perhaps equally famous for making up the crunchy core of the classic chocolate-coated Whoppers candy. But malt brings flavor, body, and more to all kinds of foods, including other breakfast staples like pancakes. Much like salt or vanilla extract, malt can be a flavor booster when paired with tastes you already know and love.

One of the most satisfying ways that you can use malted milk powder is to amp up your chocolate chip cookies, so you should consider adding some bittersweet or milk chocolate chunks or shavings to your malted waffle batter. But why stop there? The combination of malt and chocolate is so powerful and compelling that you could easily incorporate cocoa powder right into the mix. Or, since your waffle maker can be used for more than just waffles, why not waffle-up some fudgy yet crisp malted brownies?

Read the original article on Daily Meal.