While we all love pancakes, waffles are an extra special treat. For a long time I have been looking for a healthier whole-grain waffle recipe that has the right texture—crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, and not too heavy. I tried traditional beer batter waffles (way too heavy), whole grain waffle recipes that came out like cardboard, and even the yeasted waffle recipes. Interesting, but not what my childhood memories conjure when I think "waffle."
This morning, I think I found the new winner. And I have a second runner-up which is not only delicious, but gluten-free!
Crisp and Thin Waffles with Loads of Fresh Fruit (from Mark Bittman's Food Matters Cookbook)
2 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 t. salt
2 T. sugar
1 t. baking soda
1/2 c. yogurt or buttermilk
2 T. melted butter
1/2 t. vanilla
4 c. fresh fruit, pitted and peeled as necessary (as we're in the dead of winter here, I served it with frozen strawberries and blueberries, and some cubed melon...as well as the choice of either chokecherry or maple syrup)
Brush the waffle iron lightly with oil and set it to medium high heat. Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. In another bowl, whisk together yogurt, egg and 1 1/2 cups water. Stir in the butter and vanilla extract. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry until almost smooth. The consistency should be like thin pancake batter; if not, add a little more water.
Spread a thin layer of batter onto the waffle iron; bake until the waffle is crisp, 5 to 10 minutes. Serve immediately, topped with fruit. Repeat for more waffles.
Quinoa Waffles (from Quinoa 365)
2 1/4 c. quinoa flour
4 t. baking powder
1 1/2 T. cane sugar
3/4 t. salt
2 large eggs, beaten
1 1/4 c. milk
1 c. water
1/2 c. vegetable oil
1 t. vanilla
Combine quinoa flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in a large bowl and set aside. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs, milk, water, oil and vanilla. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture, mixing well to make a thin batter.
Grease or lightly spray a waffle iron with cooking oil and preheat it. Pour the batter onto the waffle iron according to manufacturer's instructions and close. Remove the waffles when the lid opens easily, about 5-6 minutes. Waffles will keep in the refrigerator for up to three days, and sealed in a container in the freezer for up to 4 weeks. Reheat in a toaster.
The quinoa waffles have an interesting nutty flavour, and while they don't rise like wheat flour waffles, they are surprisingly filling and satisfying. Unlike other waffles I've tried, these ones have staying power. You won't be hungry for a good long time after a breakfast or brunch of quinoa waffles.