Polenta Waffles with Edamame Purée and Sweet Corn Frittata (GF)

In the college dining hall this past year, they would occasionally serve what was called "breakfast for dinner." This usually meant that the platters ordinarily filled with delicious stir-fries, curries, and salmon slices were piled high with cheese-smothered eggs eggs, greasy sausages, and stodgy pancakes. I was always slightly frustrated when this happened, annoyed at the person who had had the gall to replace my favorite roasted brussel sprouts with thick slices of bland and doughy French toast. When I happened upon Joy the Baker's recipe for gluten-free polenta waffles, however, I decided that perhaps "breakfast for dinner" had a chance at redemption after all. Instead of drowning our waffles under globs of sticky syrup, however, I perched them on rafts of roasted purple carrots. Pale-green edamame purée served as smooth creamy beds for the sweet corn frittatas perched at the top of the pile. Topped off with a generous sprinkling of fresh chives from the garden, this meal certainly challenged all of my previous conceptions of "breakfast for dinner." The creamy but bright flavor of the edamame was refreshing and the smooth texture perfectly balanced the crispy golden crust of the cheese and chive-filled waffles. Kernels of corn added a fresh sweetness to the frittata, while the thinly sliced carrots, almost caramelized in the oven, added a layer of earthiness to the dish. While every part of this dish was spontaneous and spur of the moment, I will definitely be trying to recreate it soon as it is the perfect playful end to a long summer day.

Polenta Waffles with Edamame Purée and Sweet Corn Frittata
     Polenta Waffles (adapted from Joy the Baker)
           1 cup water
           1/2 cup instant polenta
           1/4 cup butter, cut into cubes (reduced from Joy the Baker's 1/2 cup, but feel free to use 1/2  cup if you are feeling decadent)
           1 cup milk 
           1 cup gluten-free all-purpose flour (I used Bob's Red Mill, but feel free to use any good mix)
           1/2 tsp salt (or 3/4 if you used unsalted butter)
           1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
           1 tsp baking powder
           1/2 tsp garlic powder
           1 egg
           1/2 cup grated cheese (Joy calls for Gruyère but I used white cheddar)
           A few tablespoons chopped chives (or parsley)
     Edamame Purée
           1 cup frozen edamame beans (shelled)
           2 tbsp olive oil
           1/4-3/4 cup chicken broth
           Sea salt and pepper to taste  
           2 eggs and 2 egg yolks OR 3 eggs (I did the yolks since I had a bunch leftover from making financiers)
           1/2 cup farmer cheese
           1/2 cup milk
           1/2 onion, chopped
           3/4 cup corn, fresh or frozen
           1-2 tbsp olive oil
           2 tbsp beet purée (optional, I had some lying around)
           1/2 cup grated cheese (I used white cheddar) 
     Roasted Carrots
           3-4 large carrots, peeled sliced into thick strips
           1 tbsp olive oil
           1 tbsp kosher salt
           1 clove garlic, pressed 
           3 tbsp grated cheddar
           2 tbsp chopped fresh chives
     Polenta Waffles (adapted from Joy the Baker)
In a medium saucepan, bring the water to a simmer and add the instant polenta in a stream, whisking constantly. Continue whisking the polenta until it has absorbed all the water and becomes thick. Remove from heat and add the butter, whisking until combined. Add the cold milk and whisk until smooth.
In a medium sized bowl, combine the flour, salt, pepper, baking powder, and garlic powder. Add the polenta mixture and mix well. 
Add the egg to the polenta/flour mixture and mix until combined. Add the cheese and chives and mix again.
Cook your waffles according to the instructions given with your machine. I greased mine to make sure they wouldn't stick, but some waffle irons tell you not to grease them, so be sure to check. Like Joy, I scooped a scant 1/4 cup of batter into the center of each of the four quadrants of the waffle iron so that I would get slightly irregular waffles. 
I made the waffles well before I was ready to serve them, so I set them aside to be toasted before serving. They also freeze well, and can be easily reheated in the oven or toaster.  
     Edamame Purée
In a microwave safe bowl or measuring cup, microwave the edamame with a few tablespoons of water on high for 6-7 minutes. 
When the beans have cooked, process them in a food processor until they are finely chopped. They will not become a proper purée until the liquid is added.
Drizzle in the olive oil and pulse until combined. Add the chicken broth a couple tablespoons at a time, pulsing between each addition. At a certain point, when enough liquid has been added, the purée will become smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides of the food processor between intervals to make sure that all of the edamame is combined into a homogenous and smooth purée.
Add salt and pepper to taste. I made the purée in advance, so I set it aside in a Pyrex measuring cup so that I could quickly reheat it in the microwave when I was ready to serve. It also refrigerates well and would make a delicious spread for sandwiches or a nice alternative to hummus.
Preheat the oven to 400˚F and grease a muffin tin. My recipe produced six little frittata muffins. 
In a medium frying pan, sautée the onion in the olive oil until translucent. Add the corn and sautée until the corn is cooked and starts to get slightly golden brown in places. Remove from heat and set aside.
Mix together the eggs, farmer's cheese, milk, and beet purée. If you are using an electric mixer, be sure to use the paddle attachment (rather than the whisk) and do not mix for too long or at too high a speed. Add and mix in the sautéed corn and cheese.
Divide the egg mixture amongst the six spaces in the muffin tin. They should be filled about 3/4 full.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the egg has set and the frittatas are slightly golden around the edges. Let them cool for a few minutes before serving. If you'd rather make them ahead of time, you can always reheat them briefly in the microwave or oven.
     Roasted Carrots
 Heat the oven to 400˚F.
Toss the carrot slices in the oil, salt, and garlic. 
Bake for 30-40 minutes, depending on how thickly you slice them. Test their readiness by inserting a knife into one of them to see how tender they are. 

Assemble and garnish as desired! Be sure to reheat any components that you made ahead of time before serving.


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