So, yesterday I had the privilege of guest posting at Feed Me Seymour with my buddy Kim. Kim and I first bonded over a mutual love for our furbabies and a mutual loathing of raisins, especially those sneaky ones that hide in cookies. ICK. She also has some SERIOUSLY good recipes, like this Grilled Fruit Sangria. So, obviously, when she invited me to participate in Waffle Week 2014, I was all like DONE - where do I sign (on a non-raisin covered line)?
Now, you guys kind of know that I don't have much of a sweet tooth. Sure, I taste test all that I make (because I wouldn't want to be rude and give people gross food), but it's just not my thing. Cheese on the other hand...oh boy. I might have a problem. True life: I once told my friend that the cheese section of Wegman's wasn't a safe place for me. I love it that much.
Therefore, clearly, my waffles were going to involve cheese and not very much sugar. Just a touch of sweetness somewhere to balance it out. Growing up, my mom always paired apple and pear pie with cheddar, so I thought that would be a great starting point. As always, I got by with a little help from my friends at Pinterest. Seriously, you can find everything there. Including a ton of awesome recipes for cheddar waffles. Inspiration - BAM!
Cheddar Bacon Waffles with Fried Apples - Inspired by In Sock Monkey Slippers
For the Waffles:
2 Cups of Flour
1 1/2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Tablespoon Sugar
1 2/3 Cup Milk (I used Fat Free Half and Half, but had planned on using 1%....until I realized it was sour. I'm pretty sure whatever you usually drink would work fine)
1/3 Cup Melted Butter
6 Slices of Bacon. Crumbled (I used Thick Cut Applewood Smoked)
3/4 Cup Cheddar Cheese, Shredded (I used a combo of extra sharp and caramelized onion, which is just as good as it sounds)
For the Apples:
3 Apples, Sliced (I used Gala, but whatever your preference, you should go for a crisper apple, since you'll be cooking them for a while. You don't want it to turn to mush)
2 Tablespoons Butter
2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar
1/8 Teaspoon Ground Ginger, Nutmeg, and Cloves
1/4 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1/2 Cup McGillicuddy's Apple Pie Liquor (You can definitely use apple juice if you're worried about alcohol content, or if you don't want to buy random booze for this one recipe)
Start out by making the bacon, so it has time to cool. I do mine in the oven, on a baking rack. Just pop it into a cold oven and set it to 375. It should be nice and crispy about 10 minutes after the oven comes to temperature.
Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a skillet. While that's melting, chop the apples and mix them with the sugar, spice, and everything nice.
Add them to the pan and allow to cook for 3-5 minutes.
Then, add the booze/juice and let it simmer until the apples are nice and soft and the liquid has thickened.
To make the waffles, begin by mixing together the dry ingredients in a bowl.
Melt the butter and mix with the eggs and milk.
Fold them together and stir in the bacon and cheese. Don't over mix!!! It should just come together; lumps, bumps, and my humps are all ok.
Try not to overfill the mess out of your waffle maker - it just wastes the delicious batter!! And don't freak out if the first one turns out funny - mine stuck to the top and bottom and completely split apart. I then asked my friend if he would like a waffle taco in exchange for helping me move a bookshelf - #problemsolver.
Serve the waffles with a scoop of apples on top and an apple mimosa on the side.
These can definitely be frozen and reheated later, if you want to make a big batch to impress your friends and family. Added bonus of being able to yell, "and in the mornin', I'm making WAFFLES" at sleepovers.
The batter comes together quickly, and most of this stuff is a pantry staple (unless you have to find a million fancy cheeses). I actually thought that waffles were difficult to make before this and was pleasantly surprised and how easy it was. I will DEFINITELY be having more brunches from now on! Or just random waffles on a Tuesday, because, why not?
Now, go forth and impress people.