Thursday, July 18, 2013

Chocolate waffles

My birthday isn't until tomorrow but that hasn't stopped me from dedicating an entire week to the celebration.  What can I say?  No matter how young or old I get, I will always love my birthday!

While I enjoyed every moment and bite of our fancy dinner out on Tuesday, I'm really having a ball trying new recipes that I've been saving for a special occasion.  If a cook can't pick what to make on her birthday, when can she?  (Actually, nearly every day, but I usually try to keep Matt's interests in mind, too.)

I've got a few new entrees to share with you and, of course, dessert, but you'll have to wait until next week for those.  In the meantime, I wanted to share one of my birthday recipes with you a little early because, well, I've been enjoying it early and all week long and can't get enough of 'em.

Chocolate waffles!

Mm hmm.  Chocolate.  For breakfast!

But, before you go and think I've gone off the deep end, hear me out.  Chocolate for breakfast becomes a legitimate and good-for-you meal topped with protein-packed vanilla Greek yogurt and juicy sliced strawberries.  There was no mid-morning hunger pangs to quiet because I was totally satisfied until lunchtime.

No need for syrup, either, because there's plenty of sweetness from the yogurt and fresh berries, which paired so nicely with the fluffy almost dark chocolate waffles.  The mini chocolate chips aren't absolutely necessary, but why on earth would you want to cut them out?  The tiny pockets of melted chocolate are such nice surprises!

If only I'd known about this 20 years ago, I could've convinced my mom that chocolate for breakfast was my birthday wish.  Though I'm not sure how receptive my mom would've been to that idea because I guarantee I wouldn't have been pleased with yogurt or berries alone.  No, sir.

This 9-year-old would've argued that ice cream was the only acceptable topping for a chocolate waffle, and I can't say she's wrong.  Or spread with peanut butter, topped with sliced bananas, and folded in half like a sandwich.  Mmm!  Come to think of it... there's always tomorrow and I happen to have one more waffle in the freezer...

Two years ago: Almond cake
Three years ago: Chocolate wafer icebox cake

Chocolate Waffles
(adapted slightly from Alton Brown's recipe)
-makes 5 waffles with this waffle maker

A few notes: Top these with any kind of yogurt and fruit that you like.  Or, get naughty and make a sundae bar, complete with ice cream, sprinkles, nuts, and whipped cream, to enjoy atop the waffles.

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 egg + 1 egg white, lightly beaten
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup milk
1/3 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
Nonstick spray, for waffle iron

Preheat waffle iron according to manufacturer's directions.  (I set mine at 4; 5 was a little too hot and burned the chocolate chips slightly.)

In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and baking soda.  In another bowl beat together the eggs, oil, and vanilla, and then add the milk. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir in the chocolate chips just until combined.  Allow to rest for 5 minutes.

Ladle roughly 1/3 cup of waffle batter onto the center of the iron.  Close the iron top and cook until the waffle is crispy on both sides and is easily removed from iron.   (For mine, this is when the red light turned to green.)  Serve immediately and enjoy!

For later enjoyment, cool waffles to room temperature on a wire rack and freeze between sheets of parchment or wax paper in a resealable plastic bag.  To reheat, microwave for a few seconds and pop under the broiler or warm/crisp in a toaster oven.

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