Years ago, when I first went out on my own, my parents bought me a Belgian waffle iron. A pretty odd thing for them to do when they never owned one themselves, but my father used to cook up a stack of pancakes for the family every weekend, and they probably figured that a waffle iron was just the thing that a modern lady about town needed these days. In all fairness, they also got me started with almost all of my other kitchen essentials too, but that poor waffle iron has spent most of its sorry existence stashed beneath other little-used appliances in remote corners of kitchen cupboards, probably crying to itself if appliances have feelings.
But to the waffle iron I now say, I'm sorry! Or at least, I'm sorry the second time around, since this is the second time I've tried making spiced pumpkin waffles since coming across a vegan recipe a couple of weeks ago. Pumpkin and spices! But with apologies to my vegan friends, soy milk and soy yogurt just don't do it for me, and in my simple pancake-chef naiveté I imagined I could just substitute ordinary milk and yogurt. After laboriously picking crusty little pieces of unbelievably dense pumpkin waffle off of the iron, I came to the realization that there must be some chemistry that made that recipe work for soy products but not dairy. Still, I enjoyed popping the little pieces of waffle relic in my mouth, and the heavenly aroma of pumpkin and spices baking was almost worth the effort alone. But there was no way I was going to put up a recipe for waffle bits tortuously pulled from a reluctant waffle iron!
It's an odd experience for me to try making the same food again in such short order since I've started a food blog in which variety is at a premium, but the taste and fragrance … even just the idea of spiced pumpkin waffles had me determined to look for a proper waffle batter. And it didn't take long at all to find an egg and buttermilk version that uses almost the exact same spicing as the vegan one, so I ended up keeping the dry ingredients from the vegan waffle and using the dairy suggestions from Smitten Kitchen. Sure enough, it was just the chemistry of the batter that made the difference, and these light and fluffy waffles practically sprang right out of the now happy waffle iron and onto the plate where they were dressed with a little warm maple syrup to make the most fragrant and delicious Sunday breakfast. The aroma simply wafted through the kitchen for hours afterwards, and the taste of spiced pumpkin waffles lingered on my tongue long enough that I didn't want to eat anything else for a long time afterwards. It was like having the finest dessert for breakfast!
I was fortunate enough to have plenty of puréed pumpkin left over in the freezer from the pumpkin pie I made last fall, but canned pumpkin ought to do the trick as well as long as it hasn't been spiced already. If you have a waffle iron craving for attention, I don't see how you could humor it much better than these. Resist the temptation to halve the recipe, and you won't be sorry.
|Spiced Pumpkin Waffles|
|Recipe by Lisa Turner|
Adapted from Post Punk Kitchen and Smitten Kitchen
Published on June 2, 2008
Light and fluffy spiced pumpkin waffles — so delicious they'll be gone in no time