One of the most interesting ideas to me, as I work on waffles, is that no ingredient is required. There are myriad flour substitutes. Sugar is usually not necessary at all. Leavening options abound. Salt is nice, but you can still make a waffle without it. Butter can be swapped out for oil, cream, nut pastes – or in this case mascarpone cheese. Your liquid can be almost anything, though it’s usually water or milk. Perhaps only eggs are truly vital, though I know there are workarounds for that, too.

A lot of my recipes explore ways that a conventional waffle can have its heart ripped out and still thrive with a new ingredient that imparts wildly different flavors. Aside from doing that to the liquid component, as I did in my Pumpkin Waffle Recipe, exchanging the fats is another favorite. Ricotta and mascarpone are two cheeses that definitely fascinate me as substitutes, so I thought I’d dig into one with some experiments here…

Mascarpone Waffles

makes 1 round American-style waffle

62g all-purpose flour (Bob’s Red Mill)
5g fine white sugar
3.6g baking powder
1.4g salt
55g mascarpone at room temperature
27g egg (heated in a very warm water bath and then lightly beaten)
85g water at ~43°C/110°F
Preheat the waffle iron to 188°C/370°F

1. Mix all of the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.

2. Add the mascarpone, warmed egg, and about 1/2 of the water. Whisk to blend the ingredients.

3. Add the remaining water, and finish blending the ingredients. The batter will be of a moderately thin consistency.

5. Pour the mix into the preheated iron and cook for 3 minutes 35 seconds.

Remove the waffle from the iron and place on a wire rack to cool. When the waffle has cooled below 49°C/120°F, place the waffle back into the iron to cook for 10 seconds longer. Serve immediately.