Having gained my independence from a Brit personally, I take celebrating Independence Day seriously. Okay, let me rephrase, … any excuse to frolic on the beach or lull by a pool with family and friends does not take a whole lot of arm twisting to get me to do!

Independence from the Brits

July 4th – Celebrating our Independence from the Brits – photo by  Norman Parkinson

Like most of America – I’m taking a little time off to enjoy the holiday. Here’s a look back at 4th of July‘s past.  Tatjana was not too sure about her first Independence Day in the States.

Tatjana's first 4th of July in the USA

Tatjana’s first 4th of July in the USA

The fireworks were definitely too loud for her sensitive little ears – she screamed her head of through entire display and would have crawled back inside me if she could have…

Tatjana getting into the fun with friends in Clear Lake, Iowa

Tatjana getting into the fun with friends in Clear Lake, Iowa

… but a couple years later she had the whole celebration thing down. From the time she was 7 – 22, summers were spent with friends at the lake house in Clear Lake, Iowa.

Independence day fun with Tatjana

Independence day fun with Tatjana

And water sports were the name of the game from swimming, to sailing, to tubing, parasailing, and water slides … July 4th became synonymous with aquatic adventures.

.... and then they grow up

…. and then they grow up

Alas, children grow up and gain their independence (and share of responsibilities) too. Tatjana had to cancel her trip home this 4th of July due to work commitments. After all,  it’s not exactly cause for a national holiday in England.

Fireworks

Fireworks

So, I feel it is my patriotic duty to splurge and start the day with my traditional red velvet waffles. They’ll certainly help cheer me up and make it a HAPPY 4th OF JULY! How will you be celebrating the holiday this year? Let me know in the comment section below.

Red Velvet Waaffles - a patriotic breakfast

Red Velvet Waffles – a patriotic breakfast

Red Velvet Waffles

The Waldorf Astoria’s Red Velvet cake has been my absolute favorite dessert since I was a very young girl. You can imagine my delight when I saw red velvet pancakes and waffles on a breakfast menu recently, so I came straight home to concoct my own rendition to share with all of you!

Servings: 4
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients

For the Whipped Cream Cheese Topping

  • 4 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

For the Pancakes or Waffles

  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 scant teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tablespoons canola oil plus 1-2 tablespoons extra for making pancakes
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 ounce red food color
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon white vinegar

Additional Toppings

  • melted butter
  • warm maple syrup optional
  • pecans or walnuts optional

Directions

Red Velvet Pancakes & Waffles

  1. Use an electric mixer on medium-high speed to whip the cream cheese until smooth. Reduce the speed and stir in the sugar, salt, and vanilla extract, and beat until the mixture is smooth and well blended. With the mixer on low speed, add half of the cream. Use a rubber spatula to remove any unmixed cream cheese from the bottom of the bowl. When the mixture is smooth, gradually add the rest of the whipping cream. Increase the speed to high and whip until soft peaks form. Should be the consistency of a dense whipped cream topping. Set aside.
  2. Stir flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder together in a large mixing bowl. Mix in egg, oil, and buttermilk. Mix until smooth.
  3. Mix red food color and cocoa in a small bowl, then stir into batter. Add vanilla, baking soda, and vinegar (in that order), and beat until everything is well incorporated, about 2 minutes.
  4. Heat 1-2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once oil starts to form ridges, drop a large spoonful of batter into the hot oil. Repeat 3 more times, keeping ample space between pancakes to keep them from running together. When the batter begins to bubble, carefully flip the pancake to brown on the other side, about 2 minutes per side.
  5. Serve hot with whipped cream cheese topping, and any additional topping you desire.Servings suggestion: Crispy bacon and sausages.

Serving Suggestions

Make waffles with the batter, and serve with a good vanilla bean ice cream and chocolate sauce for dessert.

Heat To Eat

You can make the batter and whipped topping in advance, but the pancakes and waffles are best made fresh; or cool and freeze the waffles, then heat in the toaster when ready to eat.

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