Tuesday, March 6, 2012
Bacon Black Pepper Waffles
Last week, I accidentally locked myself out of my apartment. I already had plans to meet up with my husband a little later, so I found myself with some time to kill. Since I hadn't realized that I was key-less until I was getting off the train, I decided to walk over to our building and see if I could sneak in. Long story short, I discovered that our apartment is safe and secure, at least from low-level thieves and robbers. I also discovered two other things! First, the copy of the Joy the Baker Cookbook that had been pre-ordered as a birthday gift from a dear and lovely friend was on my doorstep. Second, the bar around the corner from our house has $5 glasses of wine on Tuesday nights. Problem solved. I sat at the bar for a full hour, sipping my wine, marking down must-try-now recipes, and cracking up (out loud, of course) at Joy's hilarious recipe descriptions and stories. It was the world's luckiest lockout.
In the week between then and now, I have made three of the recipes in the book, and all have been complete knockouts. Kettle corn made a fine dinner for one alongside Heidi's blood orange gin sparkler. The brown butter chocolate chip cookies are an absolute delight. I had never refrigerated my chocolate chip cookie dough before, nor had I ever let the cookies rest sufficiently on the pan after baking. These tips took the cookies from good to perfect!
Smushing waffles and bacon together into one over-the-top breakfast treat was a stroke of genius. Adding pepper? I don't even know. Delicious. Make them for dinner today! And then grab your own copy of this fabulous fun book! The recipes are so accessible, the photos are gorgeous, and you will want to be Joy's friend forever.
Bacon Black Pepper Waffles
from the Joy the Baker cookbook
For the bacon:
10 slices bacon
2 teaspoons fresh, coarsely cracked black pepper
For the waffles:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh, coarsely cracked black pepper
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
4 large eggs
2/3 cup canola or vegetable oil
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups buttermilk
To make the bacon: position a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and arrange bacon slices into a single layer across the sheet. Sprinkle generously with black pepper. Place in the oven to bake until bacon is brown and crispy, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and place bacon slices on a plate lined with paper towels. Once cool enough to handle, chop bacon into bite-sized chunks and set aside while you prepare the waffle batter.
Set your waffle iron on a level, clean surface and turn on to preheat.
To make the waffles: in a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, pepper, and brown sugar. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, oil, vanilla, and buttermilk. Add the buttermilk mixture, all at once, to the flour mixture. Stir until just incorporated. Fold in the bacon. Try not to overmix the batter. If a few lumps remain, that's OK.
Cook according to your waffle machine instructions. Serve with warm maple syrup. Waffles are best served immediately.