Most helpful positive review
63 of 68 people found the following review helpful
on July 23, 2013
I have a VillaWare 2-square Belgian waffle, so my comparison is to that one, which is very fine but high priced.
Here's what I found:
Parts. The flip unit does not detach from the base. There is a removable drip tray that fits under it, not shown in the photo here, and I highly recommend using it, because we all know what cooking waffles is like. Even if the batter doesn't run over, the oil might.
Cleaning. I cleaned it before use by wiping with damp paper towel, heating it, brushing it with Crisco shortening, and then cooling it and wiping with a dry paper towel. I highly recommend this because the non-stick ceramic coating inside really smells of chemistry in action. Once heated and oiled this way, the smell is completely gone and it felt safe to use. After making two very fine waffles, the only cleaning needed seems to be 1) the drip tray needs a light hand wash with soapy water, and 2) wipe the waffle iron with a dry paper towel after cooling.
Use. AS WITH ALL NON-STICK SURFACES DO NOT USE SPRAY OILS. Use vegetable oil or butter applied with a brush before use. Their recipes did all include cornstarch in large amounts (1/2 cup) and cornmeal - (odd?) - and we are at a high altitude, so I made a Belgian waffle recipe I already knew was reliable, rather than the ones included in the machine box. It's not that there is anything wrong with their recipes, mostly to test results against something familiar. The batter I use has whipped egg white, a pinch of cream of tartar, and melted butter. The Oster WM has a temperature gauge, an "on" red light, and a "ready" green light. Even has a "ready" green light on the reverse in case you are heating it upside down. For safety, it is IMPOSSIBLE to open the unit upside down, so you cannot make a mistake and drop batter all over the place. Yay!
Once the green light appeared I poured in a lavish amount of batter, closed the lid, and immediately flipped it over to coat the top. The green light turned off, as naturally, it had cooled from adding the batter. The green light did NOT come back on to signal the waffle was done. In fact, I began to get a little worried after the steam stopped coming from the sides, turned it back upright and raised the lid to find a perfectly shaped, slightly over-browned but delicious waffle. Apparently the only "timer" you get is to watch it closely. When the steam slows down, it's time to check it or removed it, just as with most wafflers (except VillaWare which has a very nice bird call to tell you time's up). If you should open the lid prematurely, and want it more toasted this lid shuts securely without mashing the points on the waffle, which, is after all, the point of making waffles instead of pancakes. I had the heat knob turned to its highest level, because we like them crispy outside.
Results. A very impressive 7" waffle, suitable for any sweet or gravy you want to add. Very hearty - more like sponge cake than any waffle I've ever made, light, crisp outside and tender inside. One round, because of the volume of batter needed and the size of the resulting waffle, filled up my breakfasters the way four waffles from the regular style would.
Recommendation. Clean this carefully before and after use. Making waffles is such an ordeal anyway, that you have to know this is not a shortcut to a quicky breakfast. The heated panels that cook the waffles are not removable, so it must be stored as a unit. I had no dripping of batter to clean up, but it seems designed to keep dripping to a minimum. Final verdict from all who ate was that the waffles were superior to any I have ever produced. Myself, I highly recommend this waffle iron, despite some intricacy of use, to put your breakfast on a new high tier. Excellent!