Waffle House Served Its One Billionth Waffle This Week, So Read This Brief History Of The Waffle To Celebrate

Calling all Leslie Knopes (Knopeses?): Everyone's favorite provider of 4 a.m. breakfast foods, Waffle House, served its one billionth waffle this week. Say what you will about the rest of their menu, but if any restaurant knows its waffles, it's WaHo.

So who was the lucky Chosen One? According to the Waffle House Twitter page, which sent out a tweet celebrating the magnificent occasion on Tuesday morning, our new Patroness of Waffles is Shanneil McCollum of Miami. She also received a plaque for her service to the waffle community, presented to her by the Norcross, GA, location where she ordered the fateful dish. Because this is the South, and we (yes, I live here) don't do things by halves, there were also balloons and overjoyed employees.

"I didn't know everyone was going to come with cameras and everything, but I enjoyed itand I can't wait to eat it," she told 11 Alive. She does look a little taken aback in the photo Waffle House posted to their Twitter page, but who wouldn't in that situation?

As a final cherry on top of the metaphorical whipped cream-laden waffle, Waffle House defended itself against unbelievers with aplomb.

"I don't see a waffle," tweeted one man, who apparently had nothing else to do except look for inaccuracies in Waffle House tweets. "I also question how you knew which restaurant to have the plaque ready at."

"It's waffle magic," the chain responded.

In the words of Nux from Mad Max , what a day! What a lovely day! And what better way to celebrate a lovely day than by reading a brief history of the waffle? If you can make it to the end of this post without desperately quelling the urge to make waffles, you're a much stronger person than I.

The Origins

The Iron Age brought about many improvements to human life: tools, weapons, and — you guessed it — the waffle iron. According to The Nibble, some believe that an enterprising cook had the idea to use two iron plates on either side of a griddle cake to heat it up faster. This eventually morphed into a thin, flat cake known as an obelios in Greece, where they were most commonly made.

Rise of the Waffle

Over the years, obelios evolved into oublies, which were essentially giant, pizza-sized cakes served in cones from street vendors. In the 13th century, oublies finally became waffles after a craftsman had the idea to create a wafer griddle with a honeycomb pattern, producing the first waffle iron. Other designs included family crests, landscapes, and, because this was the Middle Ages, religious symbols.

The Takeover

Wafles, as they were known to the Dutch, made their way to the Americas when colonists from the Netherlands in the early 17th century. Here, the waffle got a second "f" and met its soulmate, maple syrup.

Finally, the first stovetop waffle iron was patented in the 1864 by the amazingly-named Cornelious Swarthout. Today, the day his received the patent is celebrated as National Waffle Day.

The Modern Day

Stovetop waffle irons finally became the electric appliances we know and love today in the 1930s. Soon after, neighbors Joe Rogers and Tom Forkner opened the first Waffle House in an Atlanta, GA, suburb on Labor Day in 1955. In the 1960s, the chain expanded in the deep South while the rest of America was introduced to the joy of Belgian waffles at the New York World Fair.

And that, my friends, brings us to the modern day, where Waffle House has served more than a billion delicious, fluffy waffles. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to see how many waffles I can fit into my mouth at once. I'm hoping for at least four.

Images: Waffle House Instagram; Ames Lai/Flickr, Giphy (4)