I waffle. I do. It’s Gemini nature and there’s no fighting it. I make no firm decisions, I take no firm stances. The firmest thing in my life is my tofu, and I’m okay with that. I consider myself “flexible” and “open-minded” and that’s the positive spin I place on this particular personality quirk o’ mine. My reason for bringing this to your attention is two-fold. The first reason is to explain my absence. I have been blogernating for 2 months because my calendar runneth over with a few little things like Disney World, holidays, birthday parties galore, and keeping up with bi-coastal Real Housewives. Although blogging remains high on the list of Stuff I’ll Get Around To, there is always a project with a quicker return that gets my attention first. That doesn’t mean I don’t start a post. I do start it, but then I remember that I need to organize the baby’s sock drawer and on the way there I notice our street is getting re-paved, then I chat with the neighbor about the weather and then I have to give serious thought to whether or not typing run-on sentences is more important than making dinner. Hmm… to write or to feed children? That is the question, but the small people always win. My weekly to-do list is, no lie, two pages long. Know why? Because rather than commit to three or four must-do items, I leave the options open by including everything I could possibly think of that ever needed to be done. Then, I don’t have to make any false promises to myself and I can waffle around more. It’s not procrastination, just sweet indecision. Self-aware much?
Time for a 180…the other reason to discuss waffling is for the most obvious. That fluffy, crunchy culinary delight that has been erroneously assigned to the breakfast time slot for far too long. The waffles I made yesterday were so good that I stuck Evan (sick, and at home again) in front of SuperWHY! so I could talk about them. They were that good.
I’m not including a picture because:
- I didn’t plan to write about them until just now.
- All waffles look the same, no matter what you do to them. It’s only the toppings that make the photo, and when you are making food for small children, “toppings” are best presented as “dips”, which they were.
- If I go and stage a photo of the leftovers in the freezer, that process will derail my writing and you won’t hear from me for another 60 days.
Since the name of my blog is “Veggie Berger”, you were probably wondering when I would talk about food. (No? Ok, well I was wondering when I was going to talk about food.) I think I’m done whining for a while and ready to talk food because I cook/bake/stir stuff every day and I enjoy the heck out of it, so I’d like to share. And, I’m sure you’re wondering how I keep such a “voluptuous” figure with such a veggie-centric diet. Cannolis, people, cannolis. Vegetarian ≠ skinny.
So, here goes with my first recipe post. I hope you’re enticed to step away from that meatloaf and serve up some of my flesh-free awesomeness for dinner. I present to you….
Carrot Cake Waffles
(adapted from “Carrot Muffins on a Grid” in Waffles from morning to midnight by Dorie Greenspan)
1/4 c raisins
2 containers (3-4 oz ea) carrot baby food (or cooked & pureed carrots)
1/3 c chopped pecans or walnuts
3 T unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 c flour (whole wheat, duh!!)
1/2 c oat bran or ground flax seeds or more flour
1 T baking powder
pinch of salt
3/4 t cinnamon
1/4 t ginger
1/3 c raw sugar
1 1/2 c milk (vanilla non-dairy milk takes everything to a new level of yum)
1 t vanilla
- Heat up the waffle iron. I use a Krups belgian waffle iron which I love. (side note: I discovered through trial-and-much error that you do not need to spray/grease/butter the grids. They are called “non-stick” for a reason.)
- Mix raisins, carrots and nuts. Set aside.
- In another bowl, blend all the remaining dry ingredients.
- In yet another bowl, beat the eggs, milk and vanilla. (I never said it wouldn’t be a mess.)
- Pour the wet over the dry, blend. Add carrot mixture, blend. Add melted butter, blend.
- Pour just enough onto the hot grids of the waffle iron so that it doesn’t overflow and cook just until lightly browned and you can flip and cook another minute or two. Don’t overcook – you’re going for a very light crunch.
This made 11 hefty waffles. Now here’s where it gets good: Serve warm OR at room temp, because they are basically square, perforated muffins. For breakfast, top with agave syrup. For a snack, cut into strips and dip into applesauce or give them a cream cheese schmear. (This works in a lunchbox, too.) For dinner, (ready for this?) melt cheddar on top. Holy Moly. Add a slice of quiche and fresh fruit.
I normally hate recipes with a dozen ingredients, but I adapted it to fit the things I already had on hand. A dozen ingredients is only bad if you have to go buy a dozen ingredients. Instead of going out, just smash up a few lingering veggies and make yourself a waffle for lunch! Due to the lovely versatility of the waffle, I was able to cram myriad vegetables in my temporarily picky toddler a few years ago. I’m pulling the same move on Leo, so I can share those recipes with you soon and I half-promise not to link every recipe with a rambling soliloquy about moi. I leave you now to imagine the scent of your carrot cake-infused kitchen, and I’m off to work on that sock drawer.