For 12-year-old Jeffrey (a.k.a. JD), from Howell, NJ, cooking is all about being adventurous, which explains why he tried putting Hawaiian rolls in a waffle iron for our America’s Best Kid Cooks Contest. JD is admittedly obsessed with the rolls (“They’re one of my favorite foods!” he says), and he wanted to make something new with them. His invention was a big hit in our test kitchen and made him a winner.
Preheat the oven to 350˚ F. For the pork roll: Prep a cookie sheet with a piece of parchment paper. Lay the pork roll slices on the parchment paper evenly spaced apart. Using 1 tablespoon of maple syrup, brush both sides of the pork roll generously with syrup. Bake for 15 minutes, flipping one time halfway through. The pork roll should be nicely browned on both sides. While the pork roll is cooking, prep the sauce and waffles.
For the sweet and tangy sauce: Mix the hot sauce, ketchup and 1 tablespoon maple syrup in a bowl. Set aside.
For the waffles: Heat a waffle iron to medium high. Spray with cooking spray. Take 4 Hawaiian rolls in a square, being careful not to pull them apart, and place on the waffle iron. Close the waffle iron and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown. Carefully remove and repeat three more times to have a total of 4 waffles.
Heat a nonstick pan and spray with cooking spray. Carefully crack the eggs into the heated pan. After 3 to 4 minutes, break the yolks and cook for an additional minute. Flip when the edges of the whites get crispy and cook on the other side for an additional 2 to 3 minutes. Add 1 slice of American cheese to each egg. Let the cheese melt, then remove from the heat.
To assemble the sandwiches, generously spread the sweet and tangy sauce on all 4 waffles. Layer 2 eggs and 2 slices of pork roll on top of 1 waffle. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with a second waffle to form a sandwich. Repeat for the second sandwich. Cut in half and enjoy!
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Photograph by Mike Garten
America’s Best Kid Cooks Contest Winner
Tools You May Need
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