Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Light & Tender Waffles (Gluten Free) // what it's like to be a kid

Upon inspection of the bread box yesterday, I discovered we are plum outta' bread. What to pack in Essie's school lunch?

Home-made waffle sandwich, with PB and Honey...(yes, I know that's not technically vegan). Waffles for breakfast, doubles as a sandwich for lunch. MMMMmmmm, I ate one, too, and it was delish.

Oh, I am such a genius!

Or so I thought.

Looking in Essie's lunch pale after school I saw that the sandwich remained untouched.

It didn't make any sense. These waffles are Essie's all-time favorite breakfast food. The girl LOVES PB&H. Was she just being picky? Maybe she wasn't hungry.

This morning it came out.

"Essie, I still don't have bread today, should I pack a waffle sandwich for you again, or do you not like it?"
She looked hesitant. Like me, she has a high need to please. Slowly, an answer.

"Yesterday when I was about to eat it everyone at my lunch table said, 'Eeeew, what's that?' And I just felt like I didn't want to eat it anymore."
And the look came over her face. The look that means tears are just about to flow.

Standing there in the kitchen, I remembered. What it's like to be a kid. What it's like to be different and be a kid. How do I forget so easily? What happens between 18 and 28 that clouds my memory of the struggles of childhood and adolescence?

"Oh, I am so sorry Essie. Sometimes children can say mean things when they see something they have never seen before. They really have no idea if it's yucky or not; they haven't tried it. I will make you something else. What about a tortilla roll-up, do you think that looks weird?"

"Maybe a little bit. But that's okay. Even if they think it's weird, I'll eat it anyway. I know it's yummy."
And in one sentence, my seven year old taught me something. We can enjoy life the way we want it, the way we like it, and not worry about what other people think.

All we need to know? We like it our way because it's yummy.

Here is our very favorite waffle recipe. We usually have to double it.

Whether or not you make it into a provocatively delicious sandwich? I'll leave that up to you.

(Our Absolute Favorite!) Light and Tender Waffles
From Neva Brackett's Seven Secrets Cookbook

Makes 1 1/2-2 large waffles (6-8 squares) (in my iron a double batch makes at least 6-8 full waffles)

Note from Neva: We have tried many combinations of waffle ingredients and made thousands of waffles. When we learned about the antioxidant benefits of flaxseed, we tried it in waffles. Our daughter Kimberly developed this recipe, which seems to have just the right combination of ingredients. It surpasses anything we have tried yet. We were surprised to discover that the flax works like leavening, causing the batter to bubble up and fill all the depression in the waffle iron.


2 cups water
1 tablespoon concentrated apple juice* (we use 1-2 dates)
1 cup quick (or rolled) oats
1/4 cup millet or cornmeal (we LOVE millet)
1/4 cup flaxseed
1/4 cup raw cashew nuts
2 tablespoons cornstarch (optional, helps waffle keep its shape when cool)
1/2 teaspoon salt

* Makes waffles brown; 1 date or 1/2 tablespoon of raisins may be used instead.


1.) Preheat waffle iron.

If your iron is old and worn, you probably have to use plenty of nonstick spray. The new waffle irons are not expensive, and a new Teflon surface stays nice a long time if you never grease or wash it. The nonstick sprays leave a residue that build up, making the waffles stick. So don't spray, and get a nicer-appearing waffle as well!

2.) Blend all ingredients for 1 minute. (Or until very smooth.)

3.) Pour mixture into preheated waffle iron and close the lid. Bake until steam stops rising and the waffle is golden brown and crisp.

Hint: We've found that the time to bake these waffles varies greatly with the particular waffle iron -- from 4 to 12 minutes. So follow the steam rule above, and you won't have a sticky mess! Once you know how long your iron takes, it's simpler to use a timer than watch the steam.

4.) Remove to a cooling rack and serve.

Don't stack waffles when they're hot, or they'll become soggy and compressed. Use a toaster to add crispiness and reheat leftovers.

Serving tips: Delicious with a warm fruit sauce, or sliced fresh peaches, maple syrup, or coconut whipped cream.

[9/20/2012 Update: Guess what? If you use certified gluten free oats, this recipe is GLUTEN FREE! Which means you could also have a gluten free, vegan sandwich. Yum.]


  1. Oh my gosh... don't even get me started on how wicked children are to eachother all through adolescence!! If I went back to school with the same mind I have now, some chitlins' would get a good peice of wit and a smack in the face LOL. ***Violence doesn't solve anything, I know that, but it's fun to imagine sometimes...***Sigh***

    1. I know, when Essie said that about her waffle, I think I had a million memories of elementary school and everything mean that all the kids said to me. So sad! I really do forget that those kinds of things happen. I tend to think, "all is well at home, therefore ALL is well." When really, it's Essie's turn to face some of the battles I faced as a child. All I can do is my best to strengthen, teach, and prepare her so that she can know how to cope with these challenges.

    2. Sadly, it's true. You have to get beat up in order to learn how to fight for yourself. Fight in many ways, politically, socially, physically and spiritually. I remember being at Ben Lomond High school and a kid making a very rude remark about my orange sweet potatoe and he thought I was so wierd! I remember telling him, you're the wierd one, you eat chocolate cupcakes and coke for lunch, you're going to be sick and fat before you know it. That shut him up real quick. :)

    3. Oh, that is so hilarious, Aimee! Sometimes kids need to hear the words that they just spat out. Repeated back to them. Then they might realize how rude they just were to you. That's kinda' what you did in that situation.

    4. from a company I love called, "Great River Organic Milling." It's a 25 pound bag. Lasts me almost a year.