Breakfasts, Desserts

eighty eight

Ginger Scones

Finding the right breakfast food is hard. In my brain, the perfect breakfast food is the homemade doughnut: crazy sweet and rich and covered in glaze, likely stuffed with fresh pastry cream. However, have you ever eaten four doughnuts in a row accidentally (and by accidentally I mean fully aware but sneakily)? You will be on the couch for roughly the next six hours a sugar coma. Not fun. So then, one might naturally look for the reverse option: the healthy breakfast of yogurt and fruit. Not a bad call at all! But if you’re watching other people smiling at down at their breakfast pastries you will probably start to cry into your Yoplait. I know this from experience. So I’ve found a potential solution: the scone. When made properly, they are light and flaky and go perfectly with coffee. The dough also takes less than half an hour to prepare! You will not be disappointed. I took one for the team and ate four in a row (for purely scientific reasons, of course) and did not feel the least bit lethargic. Okay, maybe after the sixth one I needed to rest. But cut me some slack.

Scones are usually made with dried fruit (like currants- gross, kill me) and sometimes fresh/frozen fruit, which I find delicious. But I found a recipe that suggested using crystalized ginger in place of fruit. For those of you that have never had it, crystalized ginger is basically just candied ginger, but it’s pretty spicy. I like chopping it in VERY tiny pieces and adding it to granola. It’s strong stuff. So I was nervous about it baking with it, but I went for it anyway. And it was AWESOME. For some reason, the post-baked ginger lost any unpleasantness and turned completely sweet and smokey, with just a little bite. This may be one of my new favorite recipes. Enjoy!

Scones (from the Williams Sonoma Baking Book)

– 2 cups all-purpose flour

– 1/4 cup granulated sugar (plus 1 tsp. for topping or use raw sugar for larger crystals)

– 1 tbsp. baking powder

– 1/2 tsp. salt

– 2 tsp. lemon zest

– 6 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

– 1/3 cup diced crystalized ginger

– 3/4 cup heavy cream (plus 2 tsp. for topping)

– 1 tsp. ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F and line a large baking pan with parchment paper. In a food processor combine the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and lemon zest. Pulse 2 or 3 times to combine. Add the butter and pulse 7 or 8 times until large coarse crumbs begin to form. Add the ginger and pour in the cream. Pulse until just moistened.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface (I like to use Silpats because cleanup is super easy!) Press the dough together until it forms a ball. Pat into a round about 1/2 inch thick and 6 1/2 inches in diameter. Cut into 6 wedges and place 1 inch apart on the prepared pan.

Stir together the reserved sugar and the cinnamon. Brush the scones with the reserved cream and then sprinkle evenly with the cinnamon sugar. Bake until golden, 13-17 minutes. When eaten warm, these scones have the tendency to convince the consumer to finish off all six scones. Listen to your instincts.

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Breakfasts, Desserts

seventy five

Guest Post: Peach Cobbler Scones

Guess who’s back? Emily’s back! She’s here to share her wondrous looking recipe for Peach Cobbler scones. Because what’s better than peach cobbler? Peach cobbler with more dough and butter. Yes please.

Peach Cobbler Scones

There are few summer treats more perfect than ripe peaches. Each time I’m at a farmer’s market I find myself buying them by the basket full. In my opinion, one of the greatest feelings is biting into a peach and having the juices drip down your face, because that is how you know you just scored a perfect piece of fruit.

Peaches are great in their fresh whole form but something this perfect should not be limited. They are delicious thrown on the grill, baked into a pie, or even used in salsa. Let me tell you though, these scones are the way to go. Guys, seriously, they’re genius.

Scones (Adapted from Joy the Baker)

Biscuit Dough

– 3 cups all-purpose flour

– 3 Tbsp buttermilk powder

– 1/4 cup granulated sugar

– 3 tsp baking powder

– 1/2 tsp baking soda

– 3/4 tsp salt

– 3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cubed

– 1 egg, beaten

– 3/4 cup cold water

– 1 tsp vanilla extract

Filling:

– 2 ripe peaches, thinly sliced

– 1/4 cup cream, for brushing

– 2 tbsp sugar combined with 2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat your oven to 400oF. In a large bowl combine flour, buttermilk powder, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Using your hands or a pastry blender, cut in the butter. In another bowl, combine egg, water, and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stirring until just combined.

On a floured surface, knead your dough until it comes together nicely. Roll it out until it is about 1/2 and inch thick (I just used my hands a patted it out). Brush half of the flattened dough with cream and arrange the sliced peaches on the same half. Sprinkle with half of the cinnamon sugar mixture. Fold the plain half of the dough over the peachy half and press it together lightly. Do your best to shape it into more of a rectangle. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into eight even pieces.

Place your scones on a parchment lined baking sheet. They will spread a little, so leave some room. Place in the fridge for about 15 minutes. Then brush the top of each with buttermilk and sprinkle with more cinnamon-sugar.

Bake 15-20 minutes, until golden brown. Allow to cool slightly before devouring.


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Breakfasts, Desserts

seven

Cinnamon Buns

Cinnamon buns are always a crowd pleaser (even if that crowd is just you covered in frosting and munching at two in the morning..) I’ve used about twelve different recipes for this dessert in the past couple years, including the traditional Pillsbury pre-made, but I assure you, these are the easiest and most delicious I’ve ever made- no yeast! I’ve adapted this recipe from Fine Cooking magazine.

The 1950s were the beginning of Pillsbury’s packaged biscuit dough, and by the end of the decade they’d started producing cinnamon rolls too! Before you look at my recipe, watch this fantastic 1957 commercial for new and improved Pillsbury cinnamon rolls. With my current knowledge of how to use the internet, the best I could do was get a click-able link- maybe I’ll figure out how to get the actual video up here eventually..

1957 Cinnamon Rolls

Dough

– 3/4 cup cottage cheese

– 1/3 cup buttermilk (I actually used dry buttermilk, it never goes bad- and who even drinks real buttermilk anyway? Saco Cultured Buttermilk Blend is the best, just follow the directions on the package about powder to liquid ratios)

– 1/4 cup granulated sugar

– 4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

-1 tsp vanilla extract

– 2 cups all-purpose or whole wheat flour

– 1 tbsp baking powder

– 1/2 tsp salt

– 1/4 tsp baking soda

Filling

– 1 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

– 2/3 cup light or dark brown sugar

– 2 1/2 tsp cinnamon

– 1/4 tsp ground cloves

– 1 cup chopped pecans

Glaze

– 2/3 cup powdered sugar

– 2-3 tbsp cold milk

– 1 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a 9 or 10 inch springform pan with cooking spray. For the dough: In a food processor, combine cottage cheese, melted butter, sugar, buttermilk, and vanilla. Process until smooth (to get out most of the little chunks of cottage cheese, but if they don’t all disappear it’s okay, there won’t be any cottage cheese-y flavor to the buns. Believe me, I hate the stuff and was really worried, but it was fine) Next, add the flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. Pulse until the dough just starts to clump together- it will be very moist. Put the dough onto a floured work surface (I use a Silpat, I find they’re easier to clean than a counter) and knead the dough a few times until smooth. Roll the dough into a 12×15-inch rectangle.

For the filling: Brush the rolled-out dough with melted butter, leaving a small boarder around the edges. In a bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and cloves.

Assembling: Sprinkle sugar mixture over the dough and pat into the surface. Pour the nuts over the sugar. Starting at the long end, roll up the dough. Using a little water as glue, pinch the seam to seal. Being careful not to cut your work surface, cut the roll into 12 even(ish) buns with a serrated knife. Place the rolls in the pan, cut side up. (They should be touching slightly, but if there’s room, don’t worry, they’ll puff up in the oven). Bake 25-28 minutes, or until golden brown and firm to the touch. Cool for 5 minutes then transfer to a serving plate.

For the glaze: Mix the powdered sugar, most of the milk, and vanilla until smooth.  It should be thick but pourable. You’ll most likely need to add all the milk, but wait until you’ve added the other ingredients before doing that. Pour over the buns and consume!

pre-glaze

post-glaze

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