The other week, Michi was talking about waffles on Twitter. Specifically, she mentioned having (and now, missing) ube-flavored waffles at a Filipino food festival, and though I’d never had ube in a waffle before, I immediately craved them too.
Ube is a purple yam popular in Filipino desserts. It has a subtle spice flavor, like a potato grown in cinnamon dirt. I’ve had it in cake, ice cream, and of course, in halo-halo, the best of all summer treats. But, I’d never thought to put it into a waffle. Worse, I rarely see it in my little college town at all, even though I go to the local Asian market often enough that the owner teases me – every time – about how I need to try cooking Chinese food instead of Filipino. I hadn’t seen ube extract, which is what most people cook with in the US. I thought, well, I could get it on Amazon…
Just in case, I went over to the market and surprise! I walk in and she immediately tells me they got a little batch of fresh ube that morning. We were go for waffles!
First, I peeled and steamed them. After about 20 minutes on the stove, I got this:
After letting them cool, I mixed them with an equal amount of unsweetened coconut milk. Using an immersion (stick) blender, I ended up with a soft, smooth, puree.
Then, I needed to make the waffles. I wanted to do something simple and easy to repeat, so I used regular Bisquick for the dry ingredients. Normally, that calls for Bisquick, whole milk, one egg, and some vegetable oil. My recipe:
- 2 cups Bisquick
- 1 cup ube mix (so, 1/2 cup steamed and cool ube, 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk, blended together)
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup milk
I stirred together the ube mix and eggs first, then added in 1/2 cup of milk. I reserved the other 1/4 because I wasn’t certain I’d need it.
After then blending in the Bisquick, I went ahead and added the rest of the milk, to get that perfect batter. No chunks, but not too thin. (I skipped the vegetable oil entirely – I rarely use it in baking. You won’t miss it.)
I have an extra-large Belgian waffle maker, but it cooked exactly as my other waffles do, so I doubt you’d need to do anything special to make these in a regular waffle maker. Because the ube – steamed by itself, or mixed with the coconut milk – will last fine in the refrigerator for a few days, you can do that part ahead of time if you like.
Once cooked, they are golden brown on the outside, with the same crispy texture you’d expect a waffle to have. (I do miss the bright purple once it’s lightened up by the other ingredients, but not enough to add food coloring. Your mileage may vary.)
Inside, they were slightly lavender, and fill of the tiny air bubbles that make waffles fluffy. Most importantly, they still had that subtle ube flavor. Delicious!
This recipe made 4 extra-large Belgian waffles, with nothing leftover, at about 350 calories each.