Aside from waffles, gingerbread is one of my biggest fascinations. Perhaps that’s because it’s yet another baked good that people have abused into a state of mediocrity – when it’s really one of the most delicious things I can think to cook up.

Freshly off an obsessive stretch of gingerbread baking this last month, I’ve been tinkering with adapting the recipe for waffles. My biggest challenge was thinking about how to get the flavor of sweet Barbados molasses to come through without also using so much that its sugar would soften the waffle. On top of that, since my gingerbread recipe also uses buttermilk (another softener), I was in a bind. The solution was to first cut down on the buttermilk a bit with regular whole milk and to use a limited amount of blackstrap molasses (Aunt Patty’s or Golden Barrel are two excellent brands) in lieu of the sweet Barbados variety. While it doesn’t give the full punch you’d get in a gingerbread, it comes through enough while still allowing the waffle to not become glued with sugar to the iron.

An excellent maple syrup pairing is 120 grams of Branon’s West View Maples’ medium amber (for a chestnut-imbued flavor).

Gingerbread Waffles

makes 2 round 38mm/1.5″ American-style waffles

120g
2.4g
2.4g
3.2g
1.6g
0.42g
0.36g
62g
46g
24g
84g
140g

Preheat the waffle iron to 191°C/375°F

1. Sift together all of the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.

2. Add the warmed egg, melted butter, molasses and whole milk. Mix until the flour is almost blended.

3. Then add the buttermilk, and whisk to 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 25 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.

*To make whole buttermilk, add 75g of storebought buttermilk at ~30°C/86°F (or 0.40g of powdered buttermilk culture) to 425g of whole milk at ~30°C/86°F, and incubate it in a covered container at ~24°C/75°F for 15 hours. It can then be refrigerated and warmed as needed for this recipe.