Lunchbreak: Jalapeño Cornmeal Waffles with Carnitas and Crema

Lunchbreak

Tara ’Teaspoon’ Bench

https://tarateaspoon.com/

LIVE LIFE DELICIOUSLY: Recipes for Busy Weekdays and Leisurely Weekends is available NOW!

Recipe:

Jalapeño Cornmeal Waffles with Carnitas and Crema

MAKES

6 TO 8 SERVINGS

HANDS-ON TIME

35 MINUTES

TOTAL TIME

45 MINUTES, NOT INCLUDING CARNITAS PREPARATION

I LOVE THE TREND of food trucks and food-truck gatherings all over the country. The creative concoctions these budding chefs share, right out of the back of a truck, is amazing.

Perhaps the idea for this recipe came from visiting a waffle truck and then a taco stand, but it got my creative juices going. These mini waffles—a variation of my break­fast Cornmeal Waffles (page 187)—get a delicious dinner makeover. Use my Garlic-Lime Carnitas or any leftover pulled pork to make this fun meal.

Make your own crema by whisking together ½ cup sour cream and 2 teaspoons lime juice.

JALAPEÑO CORNMEAL WAFFLES

1¼ cups all-purpose flour

¾ cup yellow cornmeal

¼ cup light brown sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

1 cup low-fat buttermilk

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

¼ cup canola oil

4 tablespoons butter, melted

2 medium jalapeños, seeded and finely diced

¾ cup grated sharp cheddar cheese

TOPPINGS

1 recipe Cuban Garlic-Lime Carnitas with Mojo (page 166), prepared

2 cups shredded red cabbage or slaw mix

Crema

Chopped cilantro

Radishes, thinly sliced

Lime wedges

1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, oil, and butter. Add egg mixture to flour mixture and whisk well to combine. Stir in jalapeño and cheddar.

2. Heat oven to 200ºF. Heat waffle iron and spoon about 2 tablespoons batter into the center of each mold. Cook until baked through and just turning golden, about 2 to 2½ minutes, depending on your iron. Waffles will be about 3 inches in diameter. Place waffles in warm oven while you cook the rest.

3. Top waffles with warm Cuban Garlic-Lime Carnitas, cabbage, and crema. Garnish with cilantro, radish slices, and a squeeze of lime.

LOOKS DELICIOUS For a fun presentation, serve these waffles like a taco bar, setting out the waffles and all the fixings and letting everyone build their own.

TARA’S  TIP I like this recipe with a bold, flavorful cheese and keep bags of shredded sharp cheddar in the fridge to save on prep time. If you don’t grate your own, Tillamook has thick-cut shreds that I love. The thick pieces of tangy cheddar shine through as they melt perfectly into the crevices of the waffles.  

*Tara Bench partnered with Tilamook on this recipe.

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