INGREDIENTS FOR THE WAFFLES:
½ cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
½ cup cooked pumpkin or butternut squash, mashed
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1¼ cup water
½ teaspoon vanilla
2¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
Beat the eggs, oil and sugar together. Blend in the pumpkin, maple syrup, water and vanilla.
In a separate large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and spices. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the flour and mix until just combined. Don’t overwork it.
Pour the batter into a preheated waffle iron and cook until crisp on the outside.
INGREDIENTS FOR THE APPLES:
2 tablespoons butter
4 small apples (Cortland, Jonagold, Pink Lady or any local variety)—peeled, cored and sliced thinly
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
¼ cup pure maple syrup
Place a large skillet over medium heat and melt the butter. Add the apple slices, toss to coat them with the butter and cook until softened, about 5–6 minutes, turning them occasionally. Sprinkle the cinnamon and nutmeg over the apples and toss to coat. Stir in the maple syrup and continue to cook for another minute.
Serve each waffle with a spoonful of the apples over the top.
Now Woodstock resident Cheryl Paff opened Black-Eyed Suzie’s Organic Café in the East Village back in the mid-’90s, which was an eatery well regarded for its “country-style” breakfasts. The Manhattan incarnation of Black-Eyed Suzie’s has since closed and risen from the ashes as Black-Eyed Suzie’s Upstate, which provides catering and a much appreciated and celebrated food stand presence at Hudson Valley gatherings like the Hudson River Exchange and the Woodstock Farm Festival. Paff offers up a family heirloom recipe, something she borrowed and “tweaked a bit” from her father who used to make these waffles every Thanksgiving morning. Not only did this recipe win a blue ribbon in a regional competition, but it is also an irresistible showcase for local ingredients as well as being a time-honored family recipe. —E. Steinman