What with Thanksgiving and all, some of us have pumpkins on the brain. And we are likely to have a can of cooked pumpkin that we may, or may not, have used in a holiday pie, or perhaps a little leftover cooked pumpkin from a whole fresh one.
Waffles are one way to use some of that pumpkin. This is a slightly fussy recipe calling for only one cup of pumpkin plus the usual in spices. Ever notice that if someone wants to convey pumpkin-ness, say in coffee, all they have to do is combine cinnamon, ginger, cloves and maybe nutmeg and add it? We associate these flavors with pumpkin so strongly that it is as if pumpkins grow already seasoned with them.
This waffle recipe has been with me quite a while, since 1985 according to a date in my recipe notebook. In fact, neighbors of mine and I used to make these together, each of us supplying a waffle iron in order to crank out enough for four adults and two hungry kids. It was my friend Pat Turner’s recipe and since Toby and I traveled to have Thanksgiving with her and her husband Mac this year, I was thinking of waffles with them years ago and recalled old times.
Essentially, I am a lazy cook, and sometimes instructions like “beat and fold in egg whites,” stop me cold. And besides, for a breakfast dish I’d need a minimum of two cups of coffee to get to the beating and folding stage. You can shorten the prep time by assembling the dry ingredients the night before, and you could just beat unseparated eggs before adding them to the milk, oil, and pumpkin mixture. It is better if you don’t; I’m just saying, you could skip it and nothing awful will happen.
When I make this recipe for just Toby and me, I halve it. I also like a more generous amount of spice, but you suit your own taste.
2 ½ cups flour
2 tablespoons sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon ginger
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1½ cups milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup pumpkin
3 eggs, separated
Pinch of cream of tartar
¾ cups pecans or walnuts, optional
Preheat your waffle iron. Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices. Set aside. In a mixing bowl, beat together the milk, oil, pumpkin, and egg yolks. Beat the egg whites with a pinch of cream of tartar until they form firm peaks. Combine the wet and dry ingredients, and mix until the flour is absorbed, then add the nuts if used. Fold in the egg whites. Bake waffles according to your iron’s directions.
Makes twelve four by four-inch waffles.