Jalapeno Cornmeal Waffles with Cheddar Sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups yellow cornmeal
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp chipotle chile powder
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 1/2 cups buttermilk
3 large eggs
2 tbsp honey
1/3 cup finely minced pickled jalapeños
3 medium leeks, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced
3 stalks celery, diced
1 large carrot, peeled and diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 ½ cup chicken or vegetable broth
1 12oz bottle pale ale or lager
2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1lb Tillamook Sharp Cheddar Cheese, shredded
1/2 cup heavy cream
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and swirl the pot for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until the garlic is fragrant. Set aside to cool slightly.
In a large bowl, whisk the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, chipotle powder, salt, and pepper together.
In a medium bowl, whisk the buttermilk, eggs, honey, and reserved garlic butter to combine well. Add to the flour mixture and whisk well to combine. Fold in the jalapenos.
Heat your waffle iron until nice and hot. Spray it with nonstick spray. Ladle some of the batter into the waffle iron and close the iron. Cook as per the manufacturer’s instructions until the waffle is golden brown on both sides, 3 to 6 minutes, depending your waffle maker. Transfer the waffle to a platter and repeat with the remaining batter.
OPTIONAL (BUT WORTH IT!): Place the waffles on a rack on a baking sheet and toast in a 350°F/175°C oven for 5 to 10 minutes (or do this with the waffles as they come out of the iron).
In a large pot, melt 2tbsp of the butter over medium heat. Add the leeks, celery, and carrot and sauté until starting to become tender, 7 to 9 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Stir in the remaining butter and let it melt. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and cook, stirring for 2 minutes. Add the broth and beer and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
Whisk the mustard into the sauce. Use an immersion blender, or a food processor to blend the sauce until very smooth. Return the sauce to the pot if necessary and heat over low heat until hot. Gradually add the cheese and then the cream, stirring constantly until the sauce is smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
Serve immediately or transfer to a crock-pot to keep warm.