What’s Cookin’ at Callie’s Cabin: Waffles are the prescription for spring fever | TahoeDailyTribune.com

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What’s Cookin’ at Callie’s Cabin: Waffles are the prescription for spring fever


On March 20, spring arrived — complete with rain showers and warm temperatures at the South Shore, and my craving for an energizing breakfast treat — buttermilk waffles. These old fashioned treats are made from a batter and I chose round in shape. They are often savored as a breakfast dish, paired with butter, maple syrup and fruit. Waffles are a wholesome food, especially when using natural ingredients and they made my mid-week sweeter.

It's no secret that on Groundhog Day, when I picked up my new Australian Shepherd puppy, my serene life with a trained senior Brittany and laid-back cat would change. Once inside my cabin and heart, the pup has me on his daily regime. That means wake-up time is 5 a.m. and swimming before 8 a.m. Catering to a young four-legger demands requires go-food like carbs. It's called The New Puppy Diet — it's guaranteed to keep you lean, fit and on the loose like a wayward pup.

On Wednesday late morning, for instance, I was working on my computer doing the webcam job as an intuitive for one international network. The chat room was full with people and I was working the crowd. Suddenly, my energized puppy jumped up on the couch, put his large Cujo-type paws around my shoulder, and flaunted his face with a big smile right into the computer screen. Plenty of "awws" and "LOLs" popped up as Simon barked nonstop, the cat fled, and I was laughing and dishing out commands that flopped as I signed off to corral the disorderly pooch. It was a candid moment as my rambunctious puppy made his DIY unforgettable cameo appearance.

It's the cup of joe, swim/hot tub and waffles breakfast that helped me keep up with this bundle of furball energy. The fact is, I never planned on raising a puppy during my senior years. And to keep up with my active boy with an adventurous mind and body, whipping up a hearty breakfast from scratch is a must-have to keep me going throughout the day and night.

Buttermilk waffles

4 tablespoons European-style butter (put aside an extra bit for cooked waffles)

2 organic brown eggs

1 cup low-fat buttermilk

1 cup whole-wheat flour

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

3 tablespoons raw honey (or granulated sugar)

A pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg

Maple syrup

Spring fruit: Combine 1/4 cup each of fresh, sliced strawberries, kiwi, bananas and oranges.

Use a nonstick waffle iron (no oil or butter needed). In a mixing bowl, combine melted butter, eggs and buttermilk. Add dry ingredients. Pour half batter on heated waffle grid. Close lid and bake till steam rises. Place waffle on microwave plate and repeat. Serves two (double recipes for four). Top with a pat of butter, syrup and fresh fruit. (Add two mini milk chocolate Easter eggs as a garnish.)

A 21st century waffle iron is a blessing compared to the one my mother used. No oil needed. Also, using whole wheat flour, brown eggs, real syrup (yes, the extra cost is worth every drop), savory spices, and fresh fruit give this treat a fresh home twist. Hot, fluffy waffles and springtime fruit is a super way to bring in the new season of spring. These waffles are easy to make, and I guarantee they'll give you an energy boost no matter what moves you to wag your tail and smile.

Motto: Going out of your comfort zone and into a new phase in life is worth the sweet challenge despite the extra effort.

Cal Orey, M.A., is an author and journalist. Her books include "The Healing Powers" series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, and Coffee) published by Kensington. (The Healing Powers of Honey and Coffee are offered by the Good Cook Book Club.) Her website is http://www.calorey.com.