Cheddar Bacon Waffles with Fried Apples for #WaffleWeek2014

Today, we’ve got waffles from my friend Elizabeth at Cooking with Milton. If you aren’t already sitting down, you probably should. These waffles, they are insane! Elizabeth and I originally bonded over our adorable dogs (we’ve got three between the two of us and they are the cutest, thank you). And it’s been so fun to get know her and see what she’s cooking up. I wasn’t kidding when I said sit down. Her waffles, woah! They are nuts in the best kind of way!

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Hi, everyone, it’s Elizabeth stopping by from Cooking with Milton!!!  Milton and I are SO excited that Kim has invited us to participate in the epicness that is Waffle Week 2014 (#waffleweek2014).  Kim and I first bonded over a mutual love for our furbabies and a mutual loathing of raisins, especially those sneaky ones that hide in cookies.  ICK.  So, obviously, when she mentioned waffles, I was all like DONE – where do I sign (on a non-raisin covered line)?

Now, for those of you who don’t know me, hi, let’s be friends.  And you probably don’t know that despite my absolute adoration of baking, I don’t have much of a sweet tooth.  I definitely taste test all my food and enjoy it, but if I’m going to make things that I love, they have cheese, not sugar.  All the cheese.  True life: I once told my friend that the cheese section of Wegman’s wasn’t a safe place for me.  I love it that much.

Therefore, clearly, my waffles were going to involve cheese and not very much sugar.  Just a touch of sweetness somewhere to balance it out.  Growing up, my mom always paired apple and pear pie with cheddar, so I thought that would be a great starting point.  As always, I got by with a little help from my friends at Pinterest.  Seriously, you can find everything there.  Including a ton of awesome recipes for cheddar waffles.  Inspiration – BAM!

 

Cheddar Bacon Waffles with Fried Apples – Inspired by In Sock Monkey Slippers

For the Waffles:
2 Cups of Flour

1 1/2 Teaspoons Baking Powder

1/2 Teaspoon Salt

1/2 Tablespoon Sugar

1 2/3 Cup Milk (I used Fat Free Half and Half, but had planned on using 1%….until I realized it was sour.  I’m pretty sure whatever you usually drink would work fine)

1/3 Cup Melted Butter

2 Eggs

6 Slices of Bacon. Crumbled (I used Thick Cut Applewood Smoked)

3/4 Cup Cheddar Cheese, Shredded (I used a combo of extra sharp and caramelized onion, which is just as good as it sounds)

For the Apples:
3 Apples, Sliced (I used Gala, but whatever your preference, you should go for a crisper apple, since you’ll be cooking them for a while.  You don’t want it to turn to mush)

2 Tablespoons Butter

2 Tablespoons Brown Sugar

1/8 Teaspoon Ground Ginger, Nutmeg, and Cloves

1/4 Teaspoon Cinnamon

1/2 Cup McGillicuddy’s Apple Pie Liquor (You can definitely use apple juice if you’re worried about alcohol content, or if you don’t want to buy random booze for this one recipe)

Start out by making the bacon, so it has time to cool.  I do mine in the oven, on a baking rack.  Just pop it into a cold oven and set it to 375.  It should be nice and crispy about 10 minutes after the oven comes to temperature.

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a skillet.  While that’s melting, chop the apples and mix them with the sugar, spice, and everything nice.

Add them to the pan and allow to cook for 3-5 minutes.

Then, add the booze/juice and let it simmer until the apples are nice and soft and the liquid has thickened.

To make the waffles, begin by mixing together the dry ingredients in a bowl.

Melt the butter and mix with the eggs and milk.

Fold them together and stir in the bacon and cheese.  Don’t over mix!!!  It should just come together; lumps, bumps, and my humps are all ok.

Try not to overfill the mess out of your waffle maker – it just wastes the delicious batter!!  And don’t freak out if the first one turns out funny – mine stuck to the top and bottom and completely split apart.  I then asked my friend if he would like a waffle taco in exchange for helping me move a bookshelf – #problemsolver.

Serve the waffles with a scoop of apples on top and an apple mimosa on the side.

These can definitely be frozen and reheated later, if you want to make a big batch to impress your friends and family.  Added bonus of being able to yell, “and in the mornin’, I’m making WAFFLES” at sleepovers.

The batter comes together quickly, and most of this stuff is a pantry staple (unless you have to find a million fancy cheeses).  I actually thought that waffles were difficult to make before this and was pleasantly surprised and how easy it was.  I will DEFINITELY be having more brunches from now on!  Or just random waffles on a Tuesday, because, why not?

One more big round of applause for Kim for hosting this awesome event.  I loved loved loved participating and eating waffles.  Come by and see Milty and I soon.

Join us for #Waffleweek2014

The first week in September is National Waffle Week, which makes me more excited than you could ever know. In terms of food holidays, it is definitely one of my favorites. And this year, I’ve invited a few friends to join me in celebrating! To welcome them over to this little space, I’m going to share a few of my favorite recipes from their collections. Trust me, it wasn’t easy to choose just a few favorites. From the sweets to dinners to appetizers, healthy items, decadent foods and more, there are about a million different delicious recipes to pick from. Head on over and check them out!

Elizabeth from Cooking with Milton
Danae from Recipe Runner
Barbecue Meatball Subs
Ashley from Cookie Monster Cooking
Vegetarian Biscuits with Gravy
Aly from Cooking In Stilettos

 

Spiked Vanilla Lemonade

Celebrate the end of summer with some spiked vanilla lemonade, perfect for a poolside party.

Spiked Vanilla Lemonade

This summer has passed by at the speed of light and I’ve hardly had any lemonade. As you know, I’m a huge lemonade fanatic. I practically live off it all summer and even in the winter, too. I love playing around with the different variations and trying new flavors. But it really does feel appropriate to sip it poolside during the scorching months.

To celebrate the end of summer, I threw together some grownup lemonade instead of just the standard sip. It needed to be jazzed up just a bit. So why not with a little bit of rum and some vanilla?

Spiked Vanilla Lemonade

 

Spiked Vanilla Lemonade

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla
  • 6 cups cold water
  • 2 Tbsp. rum per glass of lemonade

Instructions

  1. Combine sugar and water in a sauce pan and heat until sugar dissolves.
  2. Pour the sugar into a pitcher along with the lemon juice and vanilla. Stir.
  3. Pour in the water and stir well to combine. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  4. Once ready to serve, pour 2 Tbsp. of rum into a glass and top with lemonade.
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If you like this recipe, try a few others that are just as tasty!

Pretty Pink Lemonade

Pretty-Pink-Lemonade

 Jalapeno Lemonade

Jalapeno-Lemonade-1024x816

Maple Oat Pecan Scones

Maple Pecan Oat Scones

I am a BIG fan of scones. Such a big fan that when we sing Fancy around here, we change the words to be “Can’t you taste this scone?” It makes sense. Why wouldn’t Iggy like this delectable breakfast bite? I know I do. So when I received my email for the Secret Recipe Club and saw that my partner, Avril, had a bunch of delicious scone recipes, I was super excited! Have you seen Avril’s blog, Baking and Creating with Avril yet? If not, you simply must head over there now. So many delicious recipes, it was certainly hard to choose just one.

In the end, I went with the maple oat pecan scones. I love how the maple syrup gives them just the right touch of sweetness. Not too much, just right. Avril topped hers with a maple glaze that is absolutely to-die-for but I opted to skip it. I wanted to pack these for breakfast and glaze – while amazingly sweet and delicious – tends to be a little sticky. They are perfect without it but if you are choosing to make them for company, whip up some glaze and have it on the side for guests.

Be sure to head over and check out Avril’s fantastic recipes! And also, check out the Secret Recipe Club and all the delicious foods, treats and goodies other members have made time around. It’s not to be missed!

Maple Oat Pecan Scones

Ingredients

  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp. cold butter, cut into cubes
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • 1/2 tsp. maple extract
  • 2/3 cup chopped pecans

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Using a food processor, grind the oats until they are fine. Add in flour, sugar, salt and baking powder until well mixed.
  3. Add in maple syrup and butter and pulse until combined.
  4. In a bowl, beat together egg, cream and extract. Pour into the food processor and mix until fully combined. Fold in pecans.
  5. Place on a floured surface and pat into a 10" circle. Cut into 8 slices, much like a pizza.
  6. Place the wedges onto a baking sheet. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes until lightly browned.
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