If you’ve ever been down south, you’ll be familiar with the concept of “soul food.” It’s comfort food at its finest: mac and cheese, grits, collard greens, and lots and lots of deep-frying. Chicken and waffles is a very popular dish there, and these yummy cornbread waffles with pulled jackfruit are a completely vegan version of the classic. Drizzle with warmed maple syrup spiked with bourbon, if desired, and you have the perfect brunch dish to serve to your friends.
Cornbread Waffles With Pulled Jackfruit [Vegan]
For the Waffles:
- 1/2 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk (see notes)
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup cornmeal
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons aquafaba (liquid from a can of chickpeas)
- 1/8 teaspoon xanthan gum
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 recipe pulled jackfruit (see recipe below), warm
For the Pulled Jackfruit:
- Approximately 1/4 cup vegetable oil, divided
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped, divided 1
- 6 cloves garlic, minced, divided
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1/3 cup seasoned rice vinegar (see notes)
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon tamari
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
- 2 cans 20-ounce young green jackfruit in brine
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
To Make the Waffles:
- In a small bowl, combine non-dairy milk and apple cider vinegar. Let stand for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt.
- In mixer bowl, combine aquafaba and xanthan gum. Set mixer speed to low and beat for 2 minutes. Turn up speed to medium and beat for 2 minutes. Turn up speed as high as it will go and beat mixture until stiff peaks form, about 4 to 6 minutes.
- Preheat waffle maker to medium, then oil or spray lightly.
- Add oil to milk mixture and mix well. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, dig out a well in center of flour mixture. Pour milk mixture into well. Stir until combined. Carefully fold in whipped aquafaba.
- Pour 1/4 cup batter per waffle square and cook for 7 minutes or according to manufacturer’s directions. Transfer to a plate.
- Top each waffle with a scoop of warmed pulled jackfruit. Serve with extra barbecue sauce and maple syrup on the side.
To Make the Pulled Jackfruit:
- In a small saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil over medium heat. Add 1/3 cup onion and 1 tablespoon garlic. Cook, stirring, until softened, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar, mustard, tamari, maple syrup, and liquid smoke. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly until thickened. Remove from heat and let sauce cool slightly.
- Transfer sauce to blender and blend on high until smooth.
- Drain jackfruit through a colander, discarding brine. Remove tough center core of each piece (the tops of the triangles). Discard any seed pods (these are all edible; they’re just not aesthetically pleasing). You’ll be left with shreds of jackfruit. Pull them apart with your fingers.
- In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add the remaining onion and minced garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add chili powder, cumin, and paprika. Add jackfruit and stir to coat. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 5 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and adding more oil if needed, until edges of jackfruit start to get a bit crispy and brown.
- Gradually add barbecue sauce (from step 1) a few tablespoons at a time, mixing well. Add just enough to make the mixture juicy and cohesive but not too runny. Set aside leftover sauce.
This waffle recipe is quite low in fat, so be sure to grease your waffle maker well, even if you have non-stick plates, to ensure that they don’t stick. If you are having a tough time getting the waffles off, you can try cooking them for an additional minute or two. If needed, you can keep these waffles warm in a 200°F oven. Place on a baking sheet in a single layer until ready to use. Make sure not to use a nut milk if you want to keep this recipe nut-free. Bourbon Maple Syrup: In a small saucepan, warm 1 1/2 cups maple syrup and 2 tablespoons bourbon, just to the boiling point, whisking well. Serve on the side, to pour over the waffles and pulled jackfruit. Pulled jackfruit can be made up to 3 days in advance, stored in an airtight container in the fridge, and rewarmed before serving. Courtesy of Aquafabulous! 100+ Egg-Free Vegan Recipes Using Aquafaba by Rebecca Coleman © 2017 www.robertrose.ca Available where books are sold. Image credit: Colin Erricson