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Pancakes, Waffles, French Toast: Pick One.


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Whenever there's a sleepover at our house (there's one tonight), the first order of business is determining what the breakfast will be, and that leads to an inevitable debate concerning pancakes, waffles, or French toast. We have few knock-down, drag-out food battles around here, and this is one of them.

I'm a fence-sitter on this issue. I haven't perfected a truly great waffle recipe yet, but have nailed a great pancake recipe that I can make quickly. If we have the time, however, I really adore a batch of well browned, long-soaked French toast using a very particular bread (the durum stick at Seven Stars here in Providence): they end up like breakfast souffles.

What's your preference? If you had to pick only one -- home or away -- what would it be?

Chris Amirault

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I've always liked waffles. Y'know, the ones that require rising time and a *special* pan. They always brought a sweat to my mothers brow if my father and I declared waffles as our breakfast wish. Delicately crisp on the outside, soft and yeasty on the inside. Even as a kid I thought pancakes were too heavy and sponge-like. And French toast is, well, bread left-over from last nights grilled cheese sandwiches. Thrifty, yes. A candidate for my morning plate? Nope.

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would scrambled eggs on brown toast count?:)those runny, melting, buttery eggs, sprinkled with some chives or dill...sorry, I am a savoury kind of person (although I would happily half pancakes with honey and yoghurt afterwards!)

The Gastronomical Me

Russo-Soviet food, voluptuous stories, fat and offal – from a Russian snuggled in the Big Old Smoke.

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Waffles, hands down, with my homemade raspberry or chokecherry syrup. Bacon or sausage on the side, naturally.

I do pancakes up at the cabin, generally when we have freshly picked blueberries.

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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If I am comparing the best waffle I have ever had to the best pancake to the best french toast, the french toast wins. But of those things, only the best pancake is something I make at home, the others are cooked by others. So, at home, gotta be the pancakes (though I'm working on my waffles and french toast, they haven't achieved the degree of perfection I have reached with my pancakes).

Chris Hennes
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I adore french toast, but it has to be made with good thick bread. I also like pancakes, but I really prefer pancakes that aren't just... well... pancakes. I like my pancakes to have a little texture to them, so I tend to go for cornmeal pancakes. (Funny... in my family we call pancakes "sonsabitches" because my grandmother would stand at the stove making them muttering "son of a bitch!" the whole time.) But waffles... oh waffles... I love you. All of you. If only I had a brunch buffet style waffle maker in my house... and by that I mean the machine and they guy making the batter. I'm hopeless at making them, but I love to eat them.

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I love them all and I refuse to choose one. But I remember being a sleep-deprived parent back in the sleepover days, and French Toast is the clear winner for ease of preparation on a bleary Sunday morning.

Margaret McArthur

"Take it easy, but take it."

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1912-2008

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Pancakes.

I love soft waffles more, but half the time they're those awful thin, crunchy waffles and the risk is often too high.

And while I like French toast, I don't get cravings for it like I do for Pancakes.

I just had the leftovers from the Oreo pancakes I had for breakfast. They were wonderful.

Don't forget what happened to the man who suddenly got everything he wanted...he lived happily ever after. -- Willy Wonka

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Y'know, I'm much more of a protein-lover than a carb-lover, and I'm not too heavy into the sweet stuff either, so that may be why French toast wins out for me. I love a really eggy not-too-sweet French toast made with a really rich eggy bread. French toast made with thick-sliced challah is heavenly. Syrup only if it's for-real maple, and even then just a drizzle, giving preference to butter. (Man, when's the last time I had French toast? Gotta fix that problem ... )

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I refuse to choose.

They all have their merits. I would also have to add aebleskivers to the list too. They were always a special treat when my mama would fire up the two cast iron pans. Light round balls under a cloud of powdered sugar and eaten with jam or my favorite lemon curd. Orange marmalade or cherry preserves were good too.

Once again...I refuse to choose.

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Pancakes! Blueberry if possible but plain with real warm maple syrup and butter. Lately I've been addicted to buckwheat pancakes. They have a nice nutty hearty taste. Yum! I know what I'm having for breakfast tomorrow. I like waffles but I have yet to have a really great one home-made or at a restaurant. French toast would be my last choice. Dunno why but for some reason I've never been a fan.

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French toast, no question. This summer I made french toast with brioche I had made for the first time. I may never eat it another way again. Blueberry pancakes are a very, very distant runner up.

Ditto, Marmish.

Although my brioche tends to be a tad decadent, so I don't make this very often. The brioche is so buttery that the only thing necessary is a little bit of Grade B maple syrup. It almost melts in your mouth. Damn, now I'm craving it. :smile:

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Hawaiian Sweet Bread French Toast.....mmmmmmm, a little butter with grade A Maple syrup.

edited for grammar & spelling. I do it 95% of my posts so I'll state it here. :)

"I have never developed indigestion from eating my words."-- Winston Churchill

Talk doesn't cook rice. ~ Chinese Proverb

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Oooh...dangerous topic! I don't have a waffle iron, so I'd pick waffles if it's available. Especially the Belgian kind. With a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. At home, it's french toast - with sausages on the side, maple syrup on top of everything. For whatever reason in my head, pancakes must have bacon next to it, but french toast must be eaten with sausages on the side.

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Yeasted, malted belgian waffles, with maple syrup & pecans. In a landslide, by a mile. Mix the dough the night before, rest in the fridge. Easy-peasy, esp if you have the kiddos make their OWN waffles. Pancakes & french toast are a dead heat for second, though my french toast requires stale New Orleans style french bread (not always on hand, so the ease of preparation edge goes to pancakes).

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French toast, no question. This summer I made french toast with brioche I had made for the first time. I may never eat it another way again. Blueberry pancakes are a very, very distant runner up.

Ditto, Marmish.

Although my brioche tends to be a tad decadent, so I don't make this very often. The brioche is so buttery that the only thing necessary is a little bit of Grade B maple syrup. It almost melts in your mouth. Damn, now I'm craving it. :smile:

I first made the brioche from the Artisan Bread in 5 Min. book. It was swoonworthy. Then I made the recipe from Baking From My Home to Yours which blew the first one out of the water. I think I need to bake on Monday.

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Pancakes. But they must have a crispy ring around the edges to best maintain the butter/maple syrup topping. This should always flow lightly over the top, and never sink into the pancake, rendering it soggy. My husband is a French toast man all the way, so it's really a wonder how we've managed to keep our marriage going this long.

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Waffles, for sure. The KA Belgian waffle maker cranks out some pretty ones. With mini chocolate chips and real maple syrup. Gotta have the crunch.

These days, French toast is second, but only when made with leftover, homemade challah.

As for pancakes, I like making them a lot more than I do eating them, but I will eat them on occasion, often with blueberries embedded in them.

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I love all three, but if I had to pick, I'd have to say French toast. It is the least easy to screw up, and my go-to restaurant breakfast item. Even the quickest-soaked, thinnest bread, least-seasoned FT is better than bad pancakes or waffles which can become like lead balloons in your stomach. FT is easiest to make in the morning as well. I'm not a soaker - to me that's more bread pudding than French toast.

Second place goes to good crispy-on-the-outside-soft-and-fluffy-on-the-inside waffles, and third to buttermilk pancakes.

"Life is a combination of magic and pasta." - Frederico Fellini

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