Saturday, August 25, 2012

Waffle Weekend: Zucchini Bread Waffles with Maple Cream Cheese

Thank you all so very much for your interest and support of Small Batch!  I am so excited to be turning something that I love into a business, and I can't wait to see how the company evolves. 

If there's one food genre we really like at our house, it's breakfast.  Not every weekend is carefree enough to allow for a relaxing brunch (weekdays rarely are either), but we try at least a couple of times a month to make & eat brunch together on a Saturday morning.   Though, we don't discriminate against eating brunch foods for other meals too....  "Brinner" (aka "breakfast for dinner") makes an appearance in our dinner menu several times a month.

With our love of brunch (especially waffles) and our love for experimenting with new recipes, I would like to begin a new series called "Waffle Weekend."  It probably won't happen every weekend, but at least a couple times a month, I plan to chronicle our latest brunch adventures.  We'll be searching for interesting recipe options & trying to create as many fun waffle variations as possible.

At this late point in the summer, there aways seems to be a great deal of zucchini  available.  Someday, I hope to have a garden where we can grow our own, but for the time being, with our 3rd floor apartment balcony that gets full, hot Texas sun, I have to be content with store-bought zucchini.  I dearly love zucchini desserts (zucchini bread, zucchini cupcakes, zucchini scones....), and I wanted to try something new.  Thus was born zucchini bread waffles.

As if the concept of zucchini bread waffles are not decadent enough, I added a maple cream cheese spread to the waffles, just to heighten the awesomeness.  We both loved them!  It's definitely a recipe I will make again.  In the words of my husband, "Oh my gosh, these are SO AWESOME! My stomach is so happy right now." Lucky for him, we have some leftover waffles to freeze, so he can have zucchini waffles for breakfast later this week too!

I urge you, whether it's brunch time or dinner time, to make these zucchini waffles.  I promise, you and your loved ones will love them!

Zucchini Bread Waffles
makes approximately 8 waffles 
adapted from several sites, including this one and this one  

1 medium zucchini
1 tsp Kosher Salt
1 1/2 c AP Flour (or replace up to 1/2 c AP flour with some whole wheat flour for additional nuttiness) 
1 Tbl Baking Powder
3/4 tsp Fine Sea Salt
1 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Ginger
1/4 tsp Nutmeg, freshly ground
1/3 c Brown Sugar, lightly packed
2 eggs
1/4 c Vegetable Oil (plus additional for your waffle iron)
1 1/4 c Milk
1 tsp vanilla

1.  Shred the zucchini on a box grater.  Place the shredded zucchini into a strainer and sprinkle with Kosher salt.  Allow to sit for 30 minutes to allow the salt to draw out some of the moisture in the zucchini.  Note: I did this step first, and while the zucchini was draining, I measured the rest of the ingredients, started bacon cooking in the oven & mixed the Maple Cream Cheese spread.  

2.  In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt and spices.  Whisk to combine.  Set aside.

3.  In a medium bowl, mix the sugar, eggs, oil, milk & vanilla.  Set aside.

4.  Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients & mix half way.  Squeeze as much moisture out of the zucchini as possible.  Rinse to remove the salt & squeeze again.  Add the zucchini to the batter and mix to combine completely.

5.  Allow the batter to rest for 5 to 10 minutes while you heat your waffle iron.  Once hot, oil your waffle iron with a little vegetable oil.  Scoop batter onto the oiled iron & cook until the waffles are golden.  Hold the completed waffles in a warm (less than 200 F) oven while you repeat with the remaining batter.

6.  Serve immediately with the maple cream cheese spread & additional maple syrup.

Maple Cream Cheese Spread
Note: Because I like to add additional maple syrup to my waffles, I kept this spread a little on the "not so sweet" side.  Adjust to your taste preferences by adding additional syrup if needed. And honestly, you don't need to measure, if you don't want to :)  Just eyeball approximately 1 part butter to 2 parts cream cheese & sweeten to taste. 

50 g butter, softened
75 g cream cheese, softened
60 g maple syrup 

1.  Cream together the butter and cream cheese using a whisk or spatula.  Add the maple syrup, adjusting the amount to your taste preference.  

2.  Store in the refrigerator or freezer until ready to use.  Any leftovers can be spread onto plastic wrap, formed into a log shape, wrapped & frozen for later use.

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