Thank goodness for Photoshop. Seriously. If it wasn’t for touch-ups, you would be looking at little black ants crawling all over the white wooden background table. Should I be writing about an ant invasion in a food blog? Probably not. But I can’t help it since I just spent about a half an hour in Photoshop with blemish tool, deleting all traces of those infuriatingly persistent black anthropods.
Let me explain: I live in a sub-tropical jungle, on the north shore of Maui, a rural area that gets an anywhere from 80 to 120 inches of rain a year. One-hundred-and-twenty!!! (For comparison, when I lived in Southern California, the average yearly rainfall was a measly four inches). Trees and plants actually increase in size right before your eyes. Mosquitoes and bugs abound. And ants. Are. Everywhere. It’s just something one has to get used to—a trade-off for the gorgeous, lush surroundings.
I often have to take pictures of the food I make outside in my yard when the lighting isn’t quite bright enough in my little cottage (if you look closely, you can actually see the reflection of the tree tops in some of the egg yolks). On this particular day however, the ants somehow found the food faster than usual, and instantly began swarming. Instead of being smart about it and moving my setup to a less ant-infested area, I decided to simply try swishing the ants away between each photo I took. Which of course was a losing battle. They just kept coming, telling all their friends that their order of eggs and waffles was ready for pick-up.
Thankfully, I got the pictures I needed before having a total ant-induced meltdown. Maybe someday I’ll have a bright, white kitchen that radiates natural light, a magical place where I will no longer fear an ant takeover. But in the meantime, I’m very happy with my little kitchen, and the big flavors I create here.
Like this breakfast. Gluten free cornbread in the shape of waffles? Yes please. Topped with yolky fried eggs, sliced radish, cilantro, perfectly ripe avocado, and a roasted salsa that’s spicy AND creamy? Double yes please! I’m officially a savory waffle convert. There will always be a time and place for sweet, syrupy waffles, but for now, hand me the salsa crema and another egg.
Savory Cornbread Waffles with Eggs and Salsa Crema
recipe inspired by Bon Appetit
Roasted Salsa Crema
3 medium tomatoes, quartered
1 medium white onion, sliced into 1/2 inch circles
1/2 red bell pepper (seeds removed)
2-3 Serrano peppers
1 clove of garlic (skin left on)
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
3/4 teaspoon cumin powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sour cream
Turn oven to broil. Spread out tomatoes, onion, bell pepper (cut side down), Serrano peppers, and garlic on a cooking sheet. Broil for 10-15 minutes, or until veggies begin to char and blacken in areas. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
Remove the skins from the garlic and the bell pepper, and remove the stems from the Serrano peppers. Place in a blender, along with the tomatoes, onion, apple cider vinegar, cumin, and salt. Blend until smooth. Add the sour cream and blend again until fully incorporated.
Gluten Free Cornbread Waffles
3/4 cup oat flour (certified gluten free if you are very sensitive to gluten)
3/4 cup finely ground corn meal
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 Tablespoons butter, melted
3 Tablespoons honey
2 eggs, whisked
3/4 cup milk
In a medium bowl, mix together well the oat flour, corn meal, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, thoroughly combine the melted butter, honey, eggs, and milk. Pour the liquid mixture into the dry mixture, and stir to combine. Allow to rest for 10 minutes (this will give the oat flour enough time to soak up the liquid, creating a thicker batter).
Heat waffle iron according to manufacturers instructions. Spoon the recommended amount of waffle mixture into a waffle iron according to your iron. Close the lid until cooked through and golden brown. If desired, keep waffles warm by placing on a tray in the oven on lowest temperature setting (below 200 degrees), untilyou are ready to assemble.
2 Tablespoons butter or oil of choice
5-6 small radishes, thinly sliced
1/2 cup roughly chopped cilantro
1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and sliced
4 mini red bell peppers, deseeded and sliced (optional)
Heat a large pan over medium-low heat. Melt 1 Tablespoon of butter (or oil of choice) in the pan, then gently crack 4 of the eggs into the pan, spacing the eggs equally apart. Cook for about 3 minutes, or until the whites are set and the yolks are still runny. Carefully remove eggs from pan and set onto a plate. Repeat with remaining eggs.
Line a serving tray with the waffles, top with fried eggs, radish slices, avocado, cilantro, and bell pepper. Drizzle with desired amount of Roasted Salsa Crema.