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These cornmeal waffles are good if made without the Mexican spices and eaten with syrup, but even better made spicy and served with a simple chili con queso dip. Leave out the "optional" ingredients if serving the waffles with berries, fruit compote or syrup.
1 3/4 cups buttermilk
5 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled OR 1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons minced fresh chives; if using dry, use 3 tablespoons (optional)
2 to 3 teaspoons ground cumin (optional)
1 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper, or 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (optional)
3 tablespoons dried tomato or bell pepper flakes (optional)
Chili Con Queso
1/2 cup prepared salsa
8 ounces cream cheese
1 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese
1 bunch scallions, sliced (about 1/4 cup)*
10-ounce package frozen, chopped spinach, defrosted and squeezed dry
*Use the white part and part of the green, about 4 inches total of each scallion.
Waffles: In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, eggs and melted butter or oil. In a separate bowl, blend together the dry ingredients, then quickly and gently combine the wet and dry ingredients. Let the batter sit for 10 minutes, to allow the cornmeal to soften. Drop the batter by 1/3-cupfuls onto a hot waffle iron, and bake until the waffle iron stops steaming. Yield: about ten 8-inch round waffles.
Chili Con Queso: Heat together, over low heat, the salsa, cream cheese and grated cheese, cooking and stirring until the mixture is smooth. Stir in the chopped spinach and scallions. Serve in a fondue pot or chafing dish to keep the mixture fluid; it'll thicken as it cools. Refrigerate any leftover sauce; it makes a wonderful dip for tortilla chips, or spread for a wrap sandwich.