August 13th, 2012
I love cherries – dried or fresh, the tartness with the sweetness makes them a perfect fruit in my opinion.
I discovered dried cherries a few years ago, though I had only every really enjoyed them in my homemade trail mix or just by the handful when traveling. This scone recipe is super simple, it takes about 30 minutes – which is exactly the kind of baking I love: instant gratification baking!
dried cherry almond scones
Total Time: 30 minutes
Yield: 12 scones
- 2 c. flour
- 1/3 + 3 Tbsp sugar
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/3 c. chilled butter, cut into pieces
- 1 egg
- 2/3 c. + 3 Tbsp whipping cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 1 c. dried cherries
- egg wash 1 egg + 1 tsp water, beaten
- raw sugar for sprinking
- sliced almonds for decorating
- Preheat oven to 325F.
- In a food processor, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add in butter pieces and pulse until well incorporated. Pour into medium bowl.
- In a small bowl combine 1 egg, whipping cream, vanilla extract, and almond extract. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients and mix just until moistened. Add cherries; mixture should be sticky.
- Turn onto floured surface and knead 4 to 5 times with floured hands, make sure all cherries are well incorporated. Pat out into TWO 1/2" thick circle shapes and use a knife to make 3 diagonal cuts (like cutting a pizza pie) to get 6 triangles out of each circle (this will yield 12 scones total). Brush triangle tops with egg wash, sprinkle with raw sugar and top with sliced almonds.
- Place on a greased baking sheet and bake for 15-18 minutes, until bottom edges appear golden.
- Remove and allow to cool 5 minutes before transfering to a cooling rack.
I found this recipe on Food Network’s site, it originally came from Blacksmith Inn in Wisconsin. I added a little extra whipping cream than the original recipe called for and I used a food processor to bring the dry ingredients together rather than how the original recipe directs. I also think these would be tasty made with orange zest and cranberries, or even lemon zest and blueberries – there is lots of room for creativity!
The scones turned out great – not overly sweet and the cherries offer just the perfect compliment of tart fruitness that you can enjoy these any time of day…and trust me, I’ve had them at all hours of the day since I made them!
January 13th, 2012
I’ve been having bakers withdrawl since hubs has been fasting from sweets… who else am I going to pawn all my goodies off to if not the hubs? Usually he has his fair share and takes the leftovers to work, but he has been gone so the oven has been cold and my pans and mixing bowls have been quite sedentary. Until last night.
Often I peruse food websites late at night because I’m a glutton for punishment. I love drooling over beautiful pics of food at midnight, wishing the cheese stick or cookie I am nibbling on would taste half as good. Sometimes I jump up and turn on the oven and othertimes I just continue to dream. While perusing this week I came across this recipe on Williams Sonoma for blackberry muffins and I just knew I had to try it! For one, it’s not an overtly sweet recipe and for 2, we have (had) frozen blackberries in the freezer!
sugar pecan crumble topping
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 3 Tbsp all purpose flour
- zest of 1/2 lemon
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- 1/3 cup pecans, finely chopped
- in a small bowl, stir together the sugar, flour and lemon zest. Stir in the melted butter until the mixture is crumbly. Add the pecans and stir to combine. Set aside.
Yield: 12 muffins
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- zest from 1/2 lemon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 egg, beaten
- 5 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 2 cups fresh blackberries (or 2-1/2 cups frozen unsweetened blackberries)
- Preheat an oven to 375°F. Grease 12 standard muffin cups with butter or butter-flavored nonstick cooking spray.
- in a bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, lemon zest and salt. Make a well in the center and add the egg, melted butter and buttermilk. Stir just until evenly moistened. The batter will be slightly lumpy. Sprinkle with the blackberries and gently fold in with a large rubber spatula just until evenly distributed, no more than a few strokes. Take care not to break up the fruit. Do not overmix.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling each to a bit above the rim of the cup. Top each muffin with the topping, dividing it evenly (the sugar will melt and produce a glaze effect).
- Bake until the muffins are golden, dry and springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes. Unmold the muffins. Serve warm or at room temperature, with butter.
I should probably take a cue that baking at night (and on a time limit – I was having a Skype date with the bestie) is probably not a practice I should take up regularly.
Apparently I have a hard time reading directions while under duress (I might be stretching it to say that being a few minutes late to my Skype date qualifies as conditions of duress…). The directions specifically state to add the sugary pecan topping to the muffins before baking them, not after.
No wonder I couldn’t get the topping to “melt” and form a glaze.
I was also annoyed at the mess it was making when the sugar failed to adhere to the muffin tops, so much so that I nuked it a few times in an effort to make it more syrupy…
I guess the bright side is that since most of it fell off, they were a tad healthier without the extra sugar!
I gave two to our maintenance man, two to our mail man, I ate two, and I sent the rest with hubs to work this morning. And it’s a good thing because another day in this house and I would have finished them off!
December 19th, 2011
I’m not a morning person. It’s not that I’m moody or grumpy when I wake up, quite the contrary!
It’s just that usually by the time I wake up it’s closer to noon than it is to morning!
Some weekends I do wake up early enough to make breakfast, and on those days I’ll make waffles, pancakes, dutch baby’s and anything of the carb variety. Recently I decided to change up my carb fest for a more hearty breakfast and since I had some grocery items on hand (bacon and spinach) that don’t normally live in our fridge, I decided to whip up a frittata. It was splendid!
bacon spinach frittata
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Yield: 6 slices (or more)
- 8 eggs
- 1/2 cup lactose-free, fat-free skim milk
- 1/2 lb fresh spinach, rinsed, dried and torn into roughly 1-inch pieces
- 7 slices bacon
- 1/2 large onion, peeled and diced
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 450°F.
- Cook the bacon in a cast iron skillet (or a frying pan that is over-safe) over medium-low heat. Remove bacon from pan when done and set on a plate with paper towels to drain. Roughly chop bacon once cooled and set aside.
- Add the onion to the same pan and cook on medium low heat for 3 minutes, or until the onions are softened and slightly translucent.
- Remove the pan from the heat, add the spinach and stir until the leaves are wilted.
- In a separate bowl, beat the eggs until frothy. Add the milk and stir just until combined. Add a dash of salt, if desired.
- Add the egg mixture and the bacon to the skillet. Stir until well mixed and then return the pan to the heat and cook on medium for about 5 minutes so the eggs begin to set.
- Sprinkle the cheese across the top, and then carefully place the skillet to the oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until edges are brown and eggs are cooked through.
- Cut into wedges and serve immediately.
Want to know the best part of this recipe?
I had the leftovers for lunch the next day and they were just as delicious as the morning before!
November 22nd, 2011
Mmmm, nothing says comfort food like bread, and nothing says holiday time like cranberries! This quick bread is so delicious I ate an entire loaf by myself.
When you see how easy it is to make, I’m sure you’ll have 2 loafs baking in your oven at any given time over the next two months.
Or at the very least you won’t be surprised when I give you a loaf for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Cranberry Walnut Bread with Citrus Glaze
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 stick unsalted butter, cold & cut into chunks
- 1 tsp freshly grated orange zest
- 3/4 cup orange juice
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup cranberries, coarsely chopped
- 1/3 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 4 lemons juiced
- 1 - 2 cups confectioner's sugar
- The Bread
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- In a food processor blend the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and the butter until the mixture resembles meal. Transfer the mixture into a large bowl.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the orange zest, juice, and the egg. Add this mixture to the flour mixture and stir the batter until just combined.
- Fold in the cranberries and the walnuts and transfer the batter to a greased 9x5 loaf pan (or 4 smaller loaf pans).
- Bake for 75 minutes, checking after 50 minutes. Remove when toothpick comes out clean.
- Let the bread cool in the pan for 10 minutes then invert it onto a cooling rack and turn it right side up.
- The Glaze
- In a small bowl combine the zest and juice. Whisk in confectioner's sugar 1/2 cup at a time until the right consistency and taste. Once smooth, pour over warm loaf and serve.
Tip: grease the pans very well, as you can see from the loaf above, some of the edge wanted to stay behind in the pan…which is fine by me because it gave me a peek inside the bread at the vibrant cranberries! The glaze could also be made with orange zest and orange juice, but I like the tartness of the lemon and it adds a third dimension of flavor. I am making a few loafs tomorrow to take to Thanksgiving at our friends’ house, I can’t wait to share this yummy goodness!
What is your favorite holiday treat?