Writer and stand-up comic Amanda Brooke Perrin eats falafel waffles at brunch and talks comedy writing, 241 pizza, and therapy. @brookeperrin
Cocktail Recipe: The Audition
1.5 oz gin (I like Bombay)
2 tbsp English Breakfast Simple Syrup
1/2 small grapefruit, juiced
To make simple syrup: Get 1 cup of water up to a simmer in a small pot. Add English Breakfast tea bag or tea ball and steep for around 4 minutes. Keep the pot at a simmer and add 1 cup of sugar and mix well. Allow to come to room temperature.
Recipe: Falafel Waffles with Cucumber Salad, Pickled Red Onions, and Crispy Pork Belly
Makes 8 large waffles
Approximate total time – 90 minutes
½ pound pork belly, skin removed
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 250oF . Slice the pork belly in ½ inch slices and place on rimmed baking sheet or casserole dish. Line with parchment paper if you have it and slow roast for 60-90 minutes. A lot of fat may drain during slow roasting so keep an eye on it every once in a while. Test a piece after 60 minutes to see if fat has softened and become luxuriously gluttonously gorgeous. If fat is still too chewy put it back in the oven. Once cooked, slice into small sticks (lardons) and with some olive oil, crisp them up in a medium hot pan to get the edges caramelized. This extra step makes pork belly amazing.
Pickled Red Onions
1 large red onion, sliced thinly
3 cups vinegar (white vinegar or apple cider vinegar)
1 tbsp salt
3 tbsp sugar
Get 3 cups vinegar up to a simmer in a small pot. Add salt and sugar and stir to combine. Add thinly sliced red onions, remove from heat and allow it to come up to room temperature. You can then throw it in the fridge and they will be good for a few days in the fridge. Doing this in advance is highly recommended - it will help save you time, and the longer the pickling time, the better the onions will be.
1 cucumber, sliced thinly
1/2 cup plain yogurt
½ lemon, juice of
3 tbsp honey
Salt and pepper
Julienne (long thin sticks) cucumbers, mix in yogurt, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Let the salad hang out in the fridge for flavours to marry while you’re preparing your falafel batter or other components.
5ish tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp sesame oil (not necessary but nice to have)
1 medium white onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp paprika (smoked paprika is better if you have it)
1 tsp dried chili flakes
2 cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/3 cup tahini
2 tbsp water
1 lemon, juiced
½ handful fresh cilantro, finely chopped
½ handful fresh parsley, finely chopped
¾ cup white flour (more if batter seems too loose)
1.5 tsp baking soda
Salt and pepper
½ cup feta cheese, crumbled
Sesame seeds (optional)
Hot sauce (optional)
In a medium size pot, sweat onions in olive oil and sesame oil on medium heat for 5-10 mins. Add garlic and let mixture cook another few minutes. Add cumin, paprika, dried chili flakes and cook out another few minutes.
Add drained chickpeas and tahini and cook 5+ minutes to allow chickpeas to become more tender. Once tender, puree mixture with an immersion blender or mash with a potato masher depending on what texture you prefer. Add juice of 1 lemon and almost all of the fresh herbs (reserve some for garnishing at the end). Add flour and baking soda and mix well. The batter should be quite thick, so don’t be afraid to add a bit more flour if the batter seems too loose.
Preheat waffle iron on medium high to high and brush some olive oil on the waffle iron to prevent sticking. Cook until waffle iron beeps, should be 4-5 minutes.
Place the waffle on the plate and stack cucumber salad, pickled red onions, and pork belly on top. Garnish with reserved herbs, crumbled feta cheese, and sesame seeds (optional). Have hot sauce on the ready, and enjoy!
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About Back of the House
Back of the House is a comedy and food podcast in Toronto. Host Mike Christie invites comics and entertainers over for a meal that has special significance in the guest's life and they discuss food, comedy, urbanism, and whatever's irking them in the moment. Remember, this is water and some are lakes.