Zbigniew Bzdak / Chicago Tribune
In 2010, former Chicagoan Daniel Shumski took an appliance (the waffle iron) that most of us assumed had only one purpose (making waffles) and unveiled a whole world of new culinary possibilities. He explored this uncharted territory on his blog, The Waffleizer, posting recipes for bread pudding and burgers, among other oddities, which led to "Will It Waffle?" his 2014 book featuring 53 recipes.
So where does someone who links himself with a very specific cooking device go next? Eventually, Shumski realized he had to branch out. "I think after I made so many things in the waffle iron, I don't know what had the power to surprise me any more," he says. Then he looked to an even more ubiquitous piece of equipment: the cast-iron skillet.