Many special events are marked in March. Among them, National Women’s History Month, St. Patrick’s Day and the start of spring. But, did you know that March 25 is International Waffle Day?
What better place to get a waffle fix than Tukwila institution, The Pancake Chef.
The restaurant is known for its German pancakes and fritters, but its waffles are also popular.
Owner Loren Sisley shares his secret for the perfect waffle and offers these two recipes for buttermilk waffles and berry compote.
“Too many people whip the air right out of the batter,” said Sisley.
Over whipping causes problems and if the batter is done just right, there may be a few lumps, he said.
At The Pancake Chef, they use three recipes for their waffle batter: a fiber mix, buttermilk and sourdough.
One of their more decadent creations is their Bacon Waffle.
It’s the perfect combination of salty and sweet, baked with chopped bacon. It’s served with two healthy, healthy in size that is, strips of bacon on top.
The Pancake Chef will celebrate its 53rd anniversary in Tukwila in July.
Sisley supports the Tukwila Police Department with food for its Special Olympics activities annually.
He’s been making pancakes since 1959, when he went from bus boy to the kitchen of Smitty’s Pancake House.
Smitty’s was a large restaurant chain in the 1960s and ’70s, Sisley said.
He came to The Pancake Chef in 1973. His wife Rachel is part owner but not as involved in the daily operations.
As far as Sisley knows, the Tukwila Pancake Chef is the only one in the state. There are others out of state with the same name but completely separate businesses.
The Tukwila Pancake Chef was started by the famous Clark’s restaurant chain of Seattle, said Sisley.
That chain once included the Twin Teepees, The Red Carpet, Village Chef and The Salad Bowl, among others.
The Pancake Chef took a steep dip in sales about four years ago, but had its first turnaround last March.
“It’s been slowly gaining again, so we’re happy,” said Sisley. “(The business) has been real good to us.”
– 1 1/2 cups milk
– 1 lb. Krusteaz pancake mix
– 2 oz. melted butter
– 4 eggs whipped well
Hand mix milk, pancake mix, eggs and butter, but don’t over whip.
Put in waffle iron for three minutes. If the iron isn’t Teflon, spray lightly with vegetable oil.
– 2 lb. bag blue or blackberries frozen, thawed and drained
– 1 bottle Torani syrup or other latte syrup
– 4 oz. lemon juice
– 3 oz. pectin blended with 1 cup sugar
Bring syrup and lemon juice to a boil.
Slowly add in pectin and sugar mix while whipping. Continue whipping until blended well.
Cover and let simmer with heat on for a few minutes, then fold in thickened syrup with berries.
Put on top of waffles and serve.