It all started one July Fourth when my dad had to be at an early-morning flag-raising ceremony. Wanting to bring the whole family along for the experience, he and my mom came up with a plan to get all their kids out of bed and going extra early on the holiday morning.
They fixed waffles from scratch, got out some fresh strawberries and whipped cream, and cooked up some bacon, hoping to lure us from our beds with the tantalizing smells from the kitchen. As everyone dragged themselves to the table for their holiday breakfast, somebody noted that we had red and white for the waffles but no blue. My mom looked through her pantry and found some blueberry pie filling, and flag waffles were born in my family.
After that, every Fourth of July we looked forward to making our very own and very patriotic flag waffle. We each received our own waffle to skillfully decorate how we chose with strawberry jam, blueberries and whipped topping.
Some people in my family were very intricate year after year, putting painstaking details to make their “flags” as accurate as possible. Others simply piled on fruit in no particular order and then sprayed on the whipped cream as high as it would go.
One year, one of my brothers took on the seemingly impossible task of fitting all 50 stars onto his waffle. Using a steady hand, he not only squeezed on all the stars but all 13 stripes as well. Another year we pulled out the encyclopedia and studied the different flags from American history. We each chose one and recreated it in our own way.
I’ve now carried this tradition on with my own family. It’s simple to do, delicious to eat and a fun, patriotic way to kick off any Fourth of July celebration.
Strawberry jam or fresh strawberries, sliced
Aerosol whipped topping
Top your waffle with strawberry jam, blueberries and whipped topping. Enjoy!
Melissa Draper lives in Payson, Utah, with her husband and their three children. Her passions include being a wife and mother, writing, running and music.