I have a side job doing gardening and landscaping this summer, which is great in many ways (Tan shoulders! Vitamin D! Learning about flowers! Getting to wear old jeans and tank tops to work!) except for the fact that, burning 350-600 calories/hr, this girl can EAT. This girl can eat lots of things that her happy hippie budget doesn’t really allow for (sushi? YES PLEASE!), especially considering the fact that I can’t bring myself to live on 10 for $10 Hungry Man meals (I can’t even bring myself, most of the time, to set food inside a conventional grocery store.)
So, yeah, lots of dried beans, peanut butter, greek yogurt (whatever’s on sale) and a LOT, A LOT, A LOT of whole-grain pasta and baked goods.
Breakfast is key. And I loooove breakfast. And I have to eat something very filling or else I’ll get hungry by the third roll of sod or bucketful of river rock, and it has to be portable.
And I hate burritos.
Toaster waffles are awesome because the little cubicles hold any sort of protein you slather on them (such as greek yogurt or almond butter or cream cheese), but at almost $4 a box they far are from cost-effective. So, I figured, why not make my own?
(I used this recipe to give me a basic idea of ratios)
Flax Agave Toaster Waffles
1 2/3 cups almond milk + 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 Tbsp ground flax seed + 6 tbsp water
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup Earth Balance, melted
1/4 cup dark agave nectar
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp of salt
Handful of flax seeds
Handful of dried shredded coconut (not the kind you put in German Chocolate Cake, which is just, I think, regular shredded coconut. This is the crunchier variety in the bulk aisle that is completely dry and in much smaller pieces, a little larger than turbinado sugar. If you can’t find that, I would probably skip it, since I think any other variety of coconut would make the texture strange.)
Combine the almond milk + vinegar and set aside for 10 minutes. Combine the ground flax seed and water, mix until it’s goopy, and stick in the fridge for the selfsame ten minutes.
Mix flours, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. In smaller bowl, combine melted Earth Balance and agave nectar (do not be tempted to add the almond milk + vinegar to the Earth Balance, even though it’s sitting right there and it seems like it makes sense. It will only make the Earth Balance solidify again, and you will live to regret it.) Add Earth Balance mixture to dry ingredients and incorporate, followed by the almond milk and the flax mixture (aka “flax eggs”). Fold in flaxseeds and dried coconut, if using.
Let sit for ten minutes while you’re heating up your waffle iron of choice (and, incidentally, if you don’t have a waffle iron, your local thrift store probably has about twenty of them just waiting for new homes. For some inexplicable reason, no one wants waffle irons. This may be what’s wrong with America).
Now, because you’re going to toast them later, you want to make sure that you don’t make them toasty on the first run-through. They should be slightly paler than your standard waffle, but not uncooked in any way (if your waffle iron has a Light —> Dark toggle like a toaster, you’ll want it on medium-high still. Anything lower will make them soggy and weird, believe me). The key is to open it up the iron and peek in, and take the waffles out when the color is right. Which is to say, only slightly toasty-looking.
When the waffles come out of the toaster, cool then on a rack or some paper towels. When they’re totally cooled, lay out a piece of plastic wrap, still attached to the roll, the length of a freezer bag and fill it with waffles, in one layer. When that layer is full, unroll more plastic wrap to fold on top of the first layer, and stack more waffles on top of that.
Keep doing this until all of your waffles are stacked with plastic wrap in between layers (you could also use parchment, if you were so inclined). Then wrap a slightly-tight final layer around the stack, tear off the roll, and gingerly insert it into the freezer bag, so as to not squish any waffles or let any fall out.
Remove, toast, and top as desired.