Melba’s American Comfort Recipe: Sweet Potato Waffles

Melba Wilson is the owner of a growing culinary empire based in New York’s famed Harlem neighborhood. Her renowned restaurant, Melba’s, is a hot spot for celebrities, locals and tourists from around the world who crave unbeatable American comfort food. She began her career at Sylvia’s Restaurant, where she launched the popular Sunday Gospel Brunch, and has received numerous accolades and awards for her entrepreneurship and her original and family recipes. She won on an episode of the Food Network’s Throwdown with Bobby Flay, was featured on The View, and appears regularly on television, most recently on CNBC’s reality show, Consumed. She lives in New York with her son.

Sweet-Potato-Waffles-(Melba's-American-Comfort)_400When I think of sweet potatoes, so many sweet, wonderful memories come to mind. Sweet potatoes are very comforting. Whether they’re baked, candied, in the sweet potato pancakes, or in these waffles, they always remind me of my grandmother’s hugs. I guess that’s why I just love sweet potatoes.From Melba’s American Comfort.

Makes 3 to 4 Waffles

2 medium sweet potatoes
1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
¼ cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground nutmeg
1 cup half-and-half*
4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter, melted
3 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
Nonstick cooking spray or vegetable oil or butter, for the waffle iron

*My son likes his sweet potato waffles made with vanilla coconut milk. Try it and see if you like it.

Melba’s American Comfort

Melba’s American Comfort

by Melba Wilson

  • Get Melba’s American Comfort
  • Get Melba’s American Comfort
  • Get Melba’s American Comfort
  • Get Melba’s American Comfort
  • Get Melba’s American Comfort

Drop the sweet potatoes, in their skins, into a pot of boiling water and cook until fork-tender, about 25 minutes. When cool enough to handle, peel off the skin (it will come off easily) and mash the potatoes. Measure and set aside ½ cup. (If there’s any left over, enjoy it while you finish cooking.)

Preheat the waffle iron.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg until well combined.

In another bowl, whisk together the half-and-half, mashed potatoes, melted butter, and the egg yolks.

In a small bowl, with an electric hand mixer, whisk the egg whites on high speed until they form stiff peaks, about 2 minutes. Set aside.

Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients. Whisk together, starting slowly, until well combined but not overmixed.

Gently fold in the beaten egg whites, making sure not to deflate them.

Spray the waffle iron with nonstick cooking spray or brush it with a bit of vegetable oil or butter and pour in enough of the batter to fill it halfway. The waffles will rise as they cook, and the amount of batter will vary from one waffle iron to another. Close the lid and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until cooked through and golden brown. Repeat with the remaining batter, respraying the waffle iron before each addition.

Serve with butter, maple syrup, whipped cream, fresh fruit, ice cream, or with chicken instead of the Eggnog Waffles. Any way you eat them, they’re sweet potato good!

Cleaning Your Waffle Iron
There are many different kinds of waffle irons and many different suggestions for how to clean them. Some say to never touch it until it’s completely cooled, but one of my favorite suggestions (because it seems the easiest) is to UNPLUG IT (very important) and, while it’s still hot, place a wet (but not dripping) paper towel on the surface, close the lid, and let it steam itself clean for a few minutes. Then, while it’s still warm, wipe away any lingering crumbs. If you still have the manufacturer’s instruction booklet that came with the iron, I’d recommend that you follow the directions in that!

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