In the time of anxiety and social distancing even from those few people that you actually don’t mind having around, there are ways to make everything slightly better. One of these ways is to waffle up. Yep, I’m using is as a verb. I make waffles passionately and with intensity corresponding to my stress level (meaning that soon I’m gonna eat waffles 24/7, guys!).
I was planning to go all fancy-pants and smart-ass on you and regale you with a history of waffles (Did you know that the verb waffle means to be indecisive and it comes from a Scottish term “waff” that means “to yelp like a puppy.”? Well, now you know. You’re welcome.) and wait with this post till August because the 24th of August is the National Waffle Day thanks to Cornelius Swarthout who received the first U.S. patent on the waffle iron in 1869. However, I realize that maybe this is not the right time for waffle trivia and y’all might be waiting for the recipe to get through these weird times of social distancing and quarantines.
So, let’s just skip the smalltalk and dive straight in.
Problematic ingredients in waffles
Traditional waffles are rather easy to make. You take eggs, milk (like cow milk and not a regular oat milk or soy milk!) and flour, add some yeast or baking powder and you’re good to go. The problems starts when you start thinking about the health and eco aspect of particular ingredients.
DISCLOSER: Whether you cut out dairy and eggs from your diet for health reasons, to fight dairy industry or you just happen to love all the animals and not just the cute and fluffy ones, I DON’T CARE. To be honest, I don’t give a damn about your food choices – IMO each meal you decide to skip the shitty ingredients (shitty for you AND for the environment), you can count me in.
So, now that we addressed the elephant in the room, let’s think about making you next waffle batch amazing.
This one is easy. Any plant milk will work. There are no bad choices (other than cow milk) so feel free to use any plant milk of your liking. Soy milk is my favorite in this case because it’s fat and creamy which is always a good thing when it comes to luscious desserts (as waffles). If you’re going for more of an everyday taste, oat milk is great and neutral an it won’t dominate the taste of your waffles. Coconut milk is the right option for you, if you are a fan of Bounty bars. You’re gonna taste it in your waffles, especially if you’re using the canned milk rather than the boxed one. I personally am a sucker for almond milk but I rarely add it to my waffles because it has the biggest ecological footprint out of all of them. My kids love rice milk (it’s naturally sweet) but it’s rather thin and less creamy than others.
This one is even easier than the milk. Just don’t use any. It doesn’t make any sense anyways.
FLOUR – same scenario as with milks. You can go crazy with whatever flour you like but please remember, that it can make of break your waffles. I always use ol’ plain wheat flour because I don’t care about gluten and I know it always works. I sometimes add oat flour (basically grind the hell out of your oats and you’re golden. Just take a look here.) or coconut flour (just take shredded coconut and grind it in waves of 3-4 seconds a couple times. Don’t mill it for too long at the time or it will release fat and will have a consistency close to peanut butter rather than flour). I’ve never used almond mill/almond flour because, you know – carbon footprint and stuff.
Yeaaaah…. So, if you don’t use any eggs, and you just mix f.e. oat milk with oat flour then how the hell is it gonna turn out anything else than an oatmeal?! Well, my friends, that’s where my SECRET VEGAN INGREDIENTS come to the rescue. And spoiler alert – you’ve probably got them in your pantry. Are you ready for the grand reveal? Here we go:
- APPLE VINEGAR – Have you ever tried adding vinegar to baking powder or baking soda as a school science experiment? It reacts dynamically, making funny sounds and bubbles. Basically, vinegar neutralizes baking powder. So, why do you want to add it in the first place? Well, if I understand the process correctly, one of the products of mixing vinegar and baking powder is carbon dioxide which is a gas. It’s the bubbles that you see on the surface. And this is exactly what makes vegan waffles so fluffy. That’s why you want to add vinegar at the very end of mixing your batter so that the CO2 won’t have the time to escape before you bake it.
- VANILLA PUDDING – whoosh, I feel like revealing and old family secret or something of similar magnitude. Adding pudding powder to the waffle batter was like my secret weapon to make people swoon over my waffles. It was especially handy when I was facing an “omnivore activist” who tried to find faults in anything vegan (yep, they exist on both sides). Just please avoid reading the instructions on the pudding box and DO NOT COOK the pudding before adding it to the batter. Add the pudding powder straight from the box. In case you do not have pudding powder in your pantry at the moment, you can add a tablespoon of corn starch or potato starch. It glues the batter together. However, if you add too much starch, your waffles will turn hard and chewy.
- ORANGE JUICE – a splash (ok, I’m an addict and I add like half a cup) of orange juice will give your waffles a beautiful blush not to mention a tasty hint of fruity flavor.
That is all, guys. All my waffly secrets revealed for you to use and impress everyone around you. If you use it and like it (or not), I would love to hear from you in the comments below or even in a private message. Also, please you the hashtag #theintrovertsguide and tag me (@introverts.guide) on Instagram. I’ll share your pics in my Stories.
Fab Vegan Waffles
- waffle iron
- 2 cups wheat flour
- 1 cup plant milk preferrably soy milk because it curdles well
- 2 tbsp apple vinegar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ box vanilla pudding powder DO NOT MAKE THE PUDDING! Use the pudding powder as it comes straight from the box.
- 1 tsp grape seed oil any oil that heats well will be good
- ½ cup orange juice optionally
- Preheat the waffle iron.
- Add apple vinegar to the plant milk and put aside for a couple minutes.
- Mix all the dry ingredients.
- Add orange juice and milk and mix quickly. DO NOT OVERMIX or you'll deflate the batter.
- Spread the oil on the irons with a silicon brush (you can skip it if you happen to have one of those fancy non-stick waffle irons).
- Pour a portion of the mix onto a hot waffle iron and cook until golden brown
- Once removed from the iron, leave on a cooling rack for a couple minutes to keep it crisp.