Tuesday, October 20, 2009

today's special

Yup, that's me. And I am celebrating all day, beginning with a big
ol' fashioned festive breakfast of cornmeal waffles with real maple
syrup, and homemade sausage. Want to join me? The coffee's on,
so come on in, for my scrumptious birthday breakfast!

This wonderful recipe is from the August issue of Gourmet magazine,
which much to my great sadness, is closing up shop. How can they
possibly do this to me? Don't they know I'm their biggest fan? Well,
guess I'll be hanging on tightly to the past issues that are scattered
around the manor.

These delectable waffles quickly became one of my favorite things.
They're light, crispy and the heavenly corn flavor pairs perfectly
with real maple syrup. You mix them up the night before, so all you
have to do in the morning (and believe me, I'm not a morning person)
is the add the baking soda and heat up the waffle iron. Easy peasey.
If I can do this in my sleep, so can you!

Cornmeal Waffles

2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water (105-115 F)
2 large eggs
2 cups whole milk
2/3 cup stone ground cornmeal
1 2/3 cup flour
1 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/2 tsp baking soda

Stir together yeast and warm water in a large bowl and let stand
until foamy, about 15 minutes. (if mixture doesn't foam, start over
with new yeast and make sure water is warm enough)

Whisk eggs and milk until combined. Whisk in cornmeal, flour,
sugar and salt until smooth, then whisk in butter. Chill covered,
overnight. Batter will bubble up and expand, slightly.

Next morning:

Add baking soda and stir.
Preheat Belgian waffle iron.

Yummity yum. (This recipe makes 4 whole Belgian waffles)

Oh, and by the way, I was two years old when the above picture was
taken in 1958, so you do the math. I am definitely not over the hill,
though. My feet are firmly planted on this side of that darned
ubiquitous hill.


  1. Happy Birthday Willow! Many Happy Returns of the Day and thank you for sharing it with us on your always beautiful blog! I hope you're spoiled royally today... xoxoxo

  2. Oh, Happy Birthday!!!
    Those waffles sound amazing-Now I'm kinda hungry Lol

  3. Happy Birthday Willow! Enjoy every moment of your day!

  4. A very happy birthday to you! Nice start with the waffles and I hope you ended the day with something very special as well!

  5. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Willow. You've got many more balls to host yet, I'm quite sure....assuming WT remains up to it! (and, btw, i didn;t do the math--you as old as you feel..which, err...in my case makes me about 80! Ha.)

    "darned ubiquitious hill" -- the poet in you comes out. Love those words.

    "the August issue of Gourmet magazine,
    which much to my great sadness, is closing up shop. How can they
    possibly do this to me? "
    --that was just like me when they closed victoria Magazine down years a go. I had just got into it with the Christmas issue. Here I was, there only male fan with no magazine home. Later i found British House and Garden though but even that is hard to find.

  6. And yes, pour me a cup and I'd love soe of those incredible looking waffles. Yum.

  7. Happy Birthday Willow. I hope your lovely breakfast is just the beginning of a lovely day for you - hope you get spoiled wrotten!

  8. Happiest of Birthdays, Willow! A fellow Libra. What an adorable little one you were. I'm going to pretend I'm there having waffles with you--sounds delicious. (In reality, I'll be getting up at the crack of dawn to head out on yet another flight.) Hope you can do something wonderful on your big day.

    I'm sad about Gourmet!! Everyone is really hit by this economy. I'm very sorry to hear that...

    Have a splendid day, Willow!

  9. Happy Birthday vintage lady! Vintage things are always better because they show they're age and they're proud of it. Plus, they're one of a kind. Except for the fact that I posted some photos this evening of a little girl from the 1930s who looks a bit like you. You sure you're not a time traveller?

  10. Happy Birthday WIllow. May you wake up to waffles every morning...the scent alone would be enough to whisk me through the day. xv

  11. Happy Birthday, Willow!
    May your day be special and your new year of life filled with joy and happiness each and every day!

    GOURMET Magazine has taught me so many things about cooking and faraway places and life in general. I am still not over the shock of their demise! I am more than ever thankful that I rescued my back issues from being given away when I moved from the States. They stacks were several (yep, many!) feet high, but I am o so glad I smuggled them into the container (as my husband liked to joke, my books and magazines and my piano were more than half the weight of our moving goods)!

  12. Hoppy Bird day to you
    Hoppy bird day to you
    Hoppy bird day
    Deer Willow
    Hoppy bird day to you !!
    Love the waffles and the sausage but not together !!!!!
    Will share the coffee and munch my waffles willingly

  13. Happy birthday Willow.
    I have brought with me some fine Yorkshire teacakes, fresh from the bakers in Brighouse and perfect for toasting.

  14. Willow,
    Happy birthday girl. Since you joined us for dinner last Saturday night, perhaps you'll invite me for breakfast?
    Have a great day.

  15. Hapy Birthday my dear, you seem to be at least having a yummy one.

  16. Happy Birthday Willow and thanks for visiting my blog. Those waffles look gorgeous and anything with maple syrup on it would be OK by me. Have a great day.

  17. Happy Birthday Willow, dear friend! I hope you have a wonderful day and that the coming year is one in which all your hopes and dreams come true!! :)

  18. Happy Birthday Willow!!!!!!

    Thank you so much for sharing your special day with us. The corn waffles look good and I will add the recipe to my list from The Manor.

    And I can say that you are younger than I am, and since I am far from over the hill, I know you are still young like I am.

    God bless.

  19. Happy Birthday! Don't know what time of day it is over there now, but heat that waffle iron up again. I'm coming over!

    willow is now one year older,
    celebrates as days grow colder,
    yet Willow still looks twenty-one,
    tell me, someone, how that's done?

  20. happy birthday willowy woman of the manor. thanks for all that you bring to and out in all the people who are drawn to you like moths to a candle!!!! steven

  21. Happy Birthday! My mom made cornmeal waffles when I was little..different recipe, but they were great. Enjoy your day!

  22. Waffles sound delicious BUT what about the eggs?

  23. Wasn't '56 a wonderful vintage dear Willow! Now you've caught up to me & we can play at being 53 together. I know your special day will be a joyous one, thank you for the wonderment you bring to so many of us each day. The aroma of those magical waffles has floated right across the Great Divide - a very big yum!
    Love Millie ^_^

  24. Best wishes for a WONDERFUL day Willow!
    You are precious!

  25. Happy Birthday Willow.....2 waffles for me please!

  26. This comment has been removed by the author.

  27. Ooops ~ sorry about the delete. I can't read without my contacts in!

    Hope you doubled that recipe since we're all coming over! Sounds delish! And looks like the weather is going to be glorious just for you!

    Happy, happy day! xxoo

  28. Now definitely, we will try that recipe!! Happy birthday, Willow! It can't help but be a great one since you're starting the day with those waffles.

    And look at that darling pic of you!!!! ♥♥♥

  29. Happy Birthday to you, Willow! Hope you have a simply wonderful day!

  30. Happy birthday Willow! The waffles look like the perfect way to get the day started.

  31. Come on in!! The waffle iron is still hot. Can I get anyone more coffee?

  32. Oh Happy Birthday Willow! Have a wonderful day - we will make some waffles here in your honour - see if you can pop across to Necky Knoll House to try some of our special girafflewaffle syrup!

  33. Birthday greetings from all the Neckmann family, Willow! Raph mentioned it's your special day - I've posted a card for you on my blog.

    Best wishes from Raph, Maureen, Nexi, Necky Becky and Littl' Nicky xxx (and Hals the Neckshund!)

  34. Mmm. Girafflewaffle syrup. Send some right over!

  35. Happy Birthday Willow!!! At 2, you already looked adorable :)

    Enjoy your day, and remember...the key is to grow younger.



  36. making mental note:

    g r o w y o u n g e r

  37. What a darling little girl you were/are Willow, and what a sweet pink dress for your party.

    Happy birthday Willow, enjoy your special breakfast and I'll be over to share a cup of java with you shortly.

  38. Happy Birthday!!!
    Relish at length

  39. Happy Birthday, Willow! I'll be happy to share a waffle... or two or three! Have a lovely, lovely day.

  40. happy birthday willow.
    and what a perfect breakfast to celebrate your day!

  41. Happy, Happy Birthday! May you have a day filled with delight and a year filled with good health, good friends and happy memories! Hugs, Terri xoxo

  42. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! Willow I am so glad you were born. I hope you have the world's finest day today.

    Cornmeal waffles? Y U M !!!!

  43. i have all the ingredients, including michigan maple syrup!! i'll save them for my birthday, coming up in december...born in 1945. that should grow you "younger", as you say. i love picking up my spry 80 year old friend and go to lunch and galleries. she's a wonderful 'model' young 'elder' for me.
    and gourmet mag. so sad. what would JULIA say? perhaps an on-line version is in the future. but, just not the same AT ALL.
    enjoy the beautiful warm birthday just south of me. best warm wishes, neva

  44. Happy Birthday, you haven't changed a bit! And, just so you know, the other side of the hill is still good.

    And I'm going to have to get a waffle iron and try those. Or better yet, I'll come to your house and you can make them for me.

  45. Happy Birthday! Enjoy your entire day and I hope it is filled with joy and happiness.

  46. Happy birthday and all good wishes for a sweet day, a sweet week, a sweet year!

    Those waffles look scrumptious.

  47. Well Happy Birthday Willow!! Hope you have an "easy peasy" day..love the sound of that. Hope this gets published..my blog's half disappeared..can't read all of yours either..maybe it'll come back!!

  48. Happy Birthday, Willow! Sending virtual champagne for your celebration! (Now I need to find my waffle iron.)

  49. Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday dear Willow, Happy Birthday to you!

    May you celebrate 100 more. As usual, stellar post and a wonderful hootenanny.

    Greetings from London.

  50. Happy Birthday! Hope you have a great day.

  51. I raise my coffee cup in salute to you and your birthday dear Willow.

  52. Mmm - waffles (drooling now). Happy birthday! Dr. M has a BIG birthday next month - maybe I'll make him waffles!

  53. I'm here from Betsy's blog to wish you Happy Birthday!

  54. Happy birthday Willow! Wow, waffles are a fantastic idea. I was also 2 years old when that pic was taken, & you're right-- we're on the good side of the hill!

  55. Happy Biiiirthday tooo youu,
    Happpy Birthdaaay toooo yooooou,
    Happy Biirthdaaaaay dear Willoooow,
    Happy Biiirthday to yooooooooouuu.
    Hippip ....Hoooray!
    Hipppip.... Hoooray!
    Nog a Piep.... Horay! ( Nog a piep means another pip in Afrikaans)

    Have a wonderful day Willow!

  56. Nog a Piep!!! (with Polish mug raised) :D

  57. Happy Birthday, dear Willow ... Celebrate today, tomorrow and into the weekend .. birthdays deserve more than a one day party ...

  58. Happy Birthday Willow...You were adorable at 2 and still so! Enjoy your birthday and waffles and coffee and all that follows breakfast!

  59. Happy, Happy Birthday Willow. Wishing you a wonderful day with many, many more to follow. I wish you everything you wish yourself and more.

    A really cute two year old.

    Gourmet is closing up shop? You're kidding right? Somehow I think you aren't.

  60. A very Happy Birthday - may the new year bring you happiness, continued health and much inspiration!!

  61. Happy birthday, dear Willow! I hope your day is filled with wonder and merriment (and a lot of waffles!).


  62. Happy happy birthday, Willow! :) I hope it's a wonderful start to another great year.

  63. Happy Birthday - and many happy returns Willow.
    I hope you have a wonderful day.
    Jen Morrison

  64. I recently acquired an harmonica....close your eyes and listen, I'm playing Happy Birthday for you!

    Have a smashing good day!


  65. Happy birthday, Willow - you young thing. Your waffles sound wonderful. May you have a fun-filled birthday with lots of pampering and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.

  66. Many happy returns of the day. Your waffles look so yummy! Age really is a state of mind. Ask Peter Pan the next time you see him:)

  67. Happy, happy, happy!!

    And many,many more!!

  68. Happy Birthday, Willow! May you stay on the "right" side of the hill for a very long time! (and the waffles look, and sound, delish)

  69. Happy happy birthday, Queen of the Manor, I am so glad to be home in time to celebrate with you. I was dreaming of waffles all last week, the ones I used to eat at the Willingdon Club in Bombay, right after a swim. Yours sound delicious. I do love the new welcome on your blog - the entering, the staircase, the perfume, the waffles... could there be a better hostess than you?

  70. Wishing you the happiest of birthdays from Helen in Bend Oregon!

  71. hallo Willow, you should know that I often drop by but don't leave a sign but could NOT do that today, as it is your BIRTHDAY, have a GREAT ONE !!!
    I too comiserate about the demise of Gourmet, what a loss-but most likely something will pop up in its stead soon enough! Wish for it, among other things, when you BLOW OUT THE CANDLES !!
    happy birthday!
    greetings, Beth

  72. happy birthday. You sure were (and still are of course) a cutie

  73. Over the Hill??
    I think NOT.

    Thanks for sharing a gift with us on your Birthday ( I shall give the recipe to my chef) .. .
    HappyHappy EveryDAy!


  74. Happy Birthday Willow! Do hope your day has been special.

  75. Happy B-day! YUMMY! I'm going to make some of those waffles. My mouth is watering...


  76. Happy day! Hope you have been celebrating all day long (and to heck with that hill).

  77. Happy Birthday, Willow!
    Best wishes and lots of bloggy kisses xx
    I hope you have lovely treats planned for the entire day. Your birthday breakfast sounds delectable.

    (I'm thinking, sadly, about the loss of my waffle iron AND Gourmet magazine. Never mind that -- only HAPPY thoughts!)

  78. Happy Birthday Willow! Best Wishes for another amazing year!

  79. Happy Birthday Willow. I came over this morning to sent good wishes your way and got distracted thinking about your breakfast. I love waffles. Hope the rest of your day has been as nice as breakfast.

  80. Birthday waffles? Oh, happy day! And to you, of course. I was out of town when your ball was held but, in catching up, it looks a grand success. Cheers.

  81. A brekkie of waffles on this special day,
    Snapped from the pages of one final Gourmet.
    Syrup and butter and all things so yummy,
    All meld together for joy in the tummy!

    Willow, a youngster at 50 plus some,
    A Poet, a Writer, a Wife and a Mom.
    So cute at two, and cuter now still…
    She remains very much, on THIS side of the hill.

    Happy Birthday my Dear Friend!

  82. Well, hey lady! Happy Birthday to you! I hope it has been a wonderful day.

  83. Hey, all, thank you SO very MUCH for all your fun birthday wishes and poetry (Suza)!!! You've made my day EXtra special.

    Lots of love to all of you, my dear, dear, bloggy friends!!! ~xox

  84. I know that I write some really far out crap, but Willow, you are pure class!!!!

  85. Happy Birthday Willow! Your baby birthday pic is so adorable! Hope your day was really special. May the year ahead be happy and prosperous.

    Love and best wishes!!!! xoxoxo =D

  86. love waffles, and love you my fiend.
    have a happy day. i wish i were there to give you a big hug.

    you were an adorable baby girl!

  87. Willow, I pray you have had a wonderful birthday! We are exactly a month apart, I'm Sept 20th, of course there's some years in there too. Your breakfast sounded yummy. I would love to drop by and have a cup of coffee with you. Happy Birthday!!!!!

  88. happy birthday! what a delightful photo of you and your cake. i must try the waffles.

  89. Willow,
    OK.. I'm going out and buying a waffle iron. YUMMY.... you must
    fix these waffles next time I'm
    You were and still are precious to all of your uncles and Ahuntie Dee!
    Happy Birthday!!
    The Bach

  90. Thanks, Unks...er Bach. I'll most definitely make them for you next time you're here! ~x

  91. Happy Belated birthday! Sorry i missed it. I love Belgium waffles, and some good rich black coffee. . ..
    What a great photo of you as a child. What a doll! :)

  92. Willow! I can't believe I missed your Birthday! I hope it was wonderful all day. You were a sweet, beautiful little girl and still are! Your parents must have been pretty special as there are some great genetics in your family! May all your wishes come true and may this year be filled with abundance on all levels for you. xx

  93. So sorry that I am a day late to wish you a Happy Birthday...

    I Hope this year is full of happiness and infinite Blessings for you...

  94. Allow me to be the onehundred and first person to wish you very many happy returns of the day.

  95. I guess our modern society's penchant for 30 minutes meals using canned ingredients killed Gourmet magazine, and I for one, am very, very triste(Spanish for SAD).
    Gourmet didn't just introduce me to food I had never tasted before--it showed me a whole different world.

  96. Well gosh darn! A birffday girl! Love the picture...I don't do math...sooooo.... you are.....forever young in my mind!
    Hope you are having a fabulous week

  97. Joanny
    The Dowser's Daughter

    Adorable photo of you --"If you carry your childhood with you, you never become older."


  98. I flunked home economics and got kicked off the cheerleading squad.
    I know I can't make those waffles without something dreadful happening.

    LOVE your photo! Are you too adorable?

  99. Such a cute photo! It looks like you've always enjoyed parties. Belated Happy Birthday Willow! ; )

  100. Happy Belated Birthday. Hope it was a great one!

  101. I mixed up this batter yesterday morning and the boys and I ate cornmeal waffles for dinner last night. They were delicious and we loved them! A perfect birthday breakfast, or daddy's-out-of-town dinner!


Inject a few raisins of conversation into the tasteless dough of existence.
― O. Henry (and me)