Thursday, February 08, 2007

Snow Day Breakfast

My kids had a "snow day" last week, although the roads were fine. The problem was that a government mandated fuel additive was clogging fuel filters on buses and causing mechanical problems -- a shining example of our government at work. The school district didn't want the kids at bus stops in the bitter cold when there was a chance that the buses would be late. Snow days are a fun surprise for kids, so I thought I'd make a special celebratory breakfast -- homemade buttermilk waffles and bacon.

I have two waffle irons -- one that makes regular thin waffles and the other that makes thicker Belgian waffles. I use both to make the preparation go faster, and because some of my family likes the thin waffles and some like the thicker ones.

Here's my version:

Buttermilk Waffles

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup white whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 eggs, separated
1 3/4 cups buttermilk
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Chopped pecans, optional

Heat waffle iron. Whisk dry ingredients together in medium bowl. Whisk yolk with buttermilk and butter (the butter will look like shards of glass when it hits the buttermilk).

Beat egg whites until they just hold a 2-inch peak.

Gradually add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients, stirring with a rubber spatula. The mixture will be thick. Gently fold egg whites into the batter.

Spread appropriate amount of batter onto waffle iron. If desired, sprinkle batter with a handful of chopped pecans. Cook, following manufacturer's instructions, until golden brown. Serve immediately, or keep warm on a wire rack in a 200-degree oven until the whole batch is ready.

When I'm making a small amount of bacon, I cook it in the microwave. When I'm making it for my family, I do it in the oven. My grandmother has been doing this for years and years. Here's how.

Baked bacon

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line jelly roll pans with foil. Place the bacon on the pan without the pieces overlapping. Bake until brown and crispy, about 15 minutes. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate. When the bacon grease on the foil-lined pan is cool, just crumple it all up and throw it away.

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And a note to friends and family: We are not digging ourselves out of massive snow here. Rochester doesn't tend to get as much lake effect snow as Oswego (which has been in the news), or, for that matter, Buffalo. And while it's been cold here, it hasn't been below zero (like some places in the Midwest). So ... I'm not complaining about the weather.

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I have a short new post on Edible TV. Find it here.

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