Pick up "Will It Waffle?" at your local bookstore!
If there's a theme to my book — beyond "yes, it will waffle" — it's that good things happen once the waffle iron comes out of the cupboard.
The Unidentified Waffled Object is a prime example. There's a story behind that name. I'll get to it.
A quick digression first: I get a lot of questions about which waffle iron I use. The answer: It depends. I have seven — and more keep showing up. Do I really need another waffle iron? Not exactly. If you want to send me one, will I turn it down? Not exactly.
So the Chef's Choice people were kind enough to send me the Chef's Choice 854 Classic Pro, which is what I used to make the Unidentified Waffled Object in the photo above — as well as many, many more that were waffled for testing purposes. And breakfast purposes.
There's a small section on this site about waffle irons and I'll have one to give away soon. Stay tuned for that.
Back to the Unidentified Waffled Object. It's not like there's a Latin naming convention for breakfast foods. It's variously known as "egg in a basket," "egg in a hole," "bird in a nest" — you get the idea. But what to call the waffled version? I turned to Instagram and Facebook for help. Intriguingly, someone piped up to say she called these "UFOs" when she made them for her kids, which led, naturally, to dubbing these "Unidentified Waffled Objects."
Listen, I'm not here to convince you on the name — just to explain it.
Here's the important thing: These are very simple to make and the result is really fun.
- Brushing the bread with melted butter avoids tearing the bread, which can happen when spreading even softened butter.
- Cracking the egg first into a ramekin allows you to pour it onto the waffle iron with a bit of control rather than cracking it over the hot waffle iron and hoping for the best.
- For a shortcut, replace Step 7 with closing the lid and cooking the egg from both sides at once. It won't have the intact yolk, but it will still look cool and taste great.
Time: 5 minutes
Yield: Serves 1
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 1 piece of bread
- 1 tablespoon salted butter, melted
- 1 large egg
- Drinking glass (diameter of mouth: about 2.5 inches)
- Ramekin or small cup
- Preheat the waffle iron on medium and coat both sides with nonstick spray.
- Brush one side of the bread with melted butter.
- Using a drinking glass, punch out a circle from the center of the bread. Remove the circle and set aside for Step 9.
- Place the bread, buttered side up, on the waffle iron and close the lid. Cook for about 1 minute, or until golden brown.
- While the bread is waffling, crack the egg into a ramekin or small cup.
- When the bread is golden brown, pour the egg into the hole in the bread and leave open the waffle iron lid.
- The white should start to set in about 1 minute. If the white is cooking much faster than the yolk, lower the waffle iron lid until it's just above the yolk — without touching — to allow the radiated heat to set the yolk.
- When the egg is done to your liking — about 2 or 3 minutes total — remove the Unidentified Waffled Object to a serving plate.
- Place the reserved bread circle in the waffle iron and close the lid. Cook for about 1 minute, or until golden brown.
- Serve hot, accompanied by discussion of naming possibilities.