Almost Famous Blueberry Buttermilk Scones

Hello again my lovely followers!  Let me start this post by saying that this is the most requested recipe that my friends and family ask me to make.  I started making these babies when I was in third grade and the recipe has stuck with me ever since. In elementary school, my mom taught the cooking elective, and as you can probably imagine, I was always first in line to cook and taste every dish we made.  I kept the scone recipe that we used, and have been baking these ever since.

When I was studying abroad in England (spring of 2012), I made about seven or eight batches of these scones because my friends just kept asking for more.  When I returned to Clark for my final two years of school, I baked these for anything from dinner parties, to nights of tea and Netflix.  They just go with everything!  This has become a go-to recipe for me as I continue on my baking adventures.  In the words of my dad, “there is just something unique about these scones that I have never really tasted before.”

So without further ado, here is my recipe for Blueberry Buttermilk Scones

blueberry buttermilk scones

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ c. flour
  • 3 T. sugar
  • 1 ¼ t. baking powder
  • ¼ t. baking soda
  • ½ t. salt
  • 6 T. cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • ½ c. buttermilk
  • 2 T. dried blueberries

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. Mix buttermilk with dried fruit to soften fruit.
  3. Stir dry ingredients together with a fork.
  4.  Add cold butter pieces and using your fingertips, work the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal.  It’s OK if some larger pieces of butter remain; it adds to flakiness.
  5.  Pour in buttermilk and fruit mixture and mix with a fork until ingredients are just moistened.  You’ll have a soft dough with a rough look.  (If the dough looks dry, add a little more buttermilk, about ½ T.)
  6. Gather the dough into a ball and knead it very briefly on a lightly floured board, about 10 times.  The dough should not be sticky and should barely come together.
  7.  Pat dough into a ½ inch thick circle about 7 inches across. It is OK if the dough pulls apart a little.
  8. Place scones on an un-greased baking sheet and brush the dough with buttermilk and sprinkle with sugar.
  9. Cut the circle into 6 equal triangles. Do not separate the triangles from each other.
  10.  Bake for 10 – 12 minutes until tops and bottoms are golden.  When you push lightly on the top of the scone, it should barely give.
  11. Transfer to a rack and cool slightly.

I think one of the reasons why these scones are always a big hit is because they are moist but not too sweet.  As many of you may know, I am more of a savory kind of gal, so I don’t put as much sugar in my scones as many other recipes call for.  I think the blueberries give the scones a unique natural sweetness that too much sugar would just cover up.

Hope these scones make you feel warm and fluffy. I recommend enjoying them with a hot cup of masala chai. Cheers!

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Pumpkin Pie for Breakfast

I have always loved the amazing taste of pumpkin pie.  It reminds me of beautiful fall days and getting together with family and friends for the holidays.  But the problem I always have with pie is that it is served as dessert.  Being such a foodie, I am usually too full from an amazing dinner to have room in my stomach for pie.  I can’t fully enjoy my pie if I’m already stuffed full from a previous meal.  So this is the solution…have it for breakfast!!  That way I can start the day with the delicious flavor of pumpkin and I can fully enjoy the taste of it because I will not be suffering from the food coma of a prior meal.

Because this recipe is the breakfast version of pumpkin pie, it is in the form of a muffin (a traditional breakfast food) but it still has all the flavors and spices that a normal pumpkin pie would have.  It’s perfect for a crisp fall morning when I’m running to class and don’t have enough time to sit down and eat a bowl of cereal.

Here is the recipe for Pumpkin Pie Muffins

Image

Pumpkin Pie Muffins
Makes about a dozen

  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ cups flour
  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the pumpkin, sugar, vegetable oil, and eggs. Mix until smooth.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, baking soda, salt, and flour.
  4. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture, and mix on low until just combined.
  5. Divide the batter among lined muffin tins, filling each cup ¾ full.
  6. Bake for 17-22 minutes, or until a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out with just a few crumbs.

Recipe courtesy of SnixyKitchen.com

Although pumpkin pie is a classic fall food, it is sometimes fun to present those flavors in a new way.  I chose muffins because breakfast is my favorite meal of the day.  I hope you enjoy these muffins as much as I (and my roommates) did! Enjoy!

Let’s start with the basics…Bread

Bread. we eat it all the time and it is definitely a staple in college.  Although buying it at the supermarket is easy and fast, I have a few reservations when it comes to cheap bread. Why the heck do so many breads contain high fructose corn syrup?!  I was so surprised when I first found this out; I didn’t want to believe it, so I checked the labels myself.  And sure enough, there it was in the ingredients list of a variety of breads at the store, along with some other ingredients that I couldn’t quite pronounce.

It was then that I decided that I should just make my own bread! Then I could decide and know exactly what I was eating.  The only problem was time.  Real bread (with active yeast) takes about 4-5 hours to make (including rising time), and in between classes, practice, and other college life commitments, there was no way that was happening during the week.  But weekends were a different story.  On a normal Saturday I get up really late, go on Facebook, and watch TV.  So I figured if I devoted 4 of those hours to baking bread, it would not be a huge sacrifice….And boy was I right.  That was the best decision I ever made.  Not only did the bread taste WAY better (and fresher) than anything at the store, but it also made the whole apartment smell like a bakery. How can you argue with that?!

Here is the recipe for the scrumptious Honey Wheat bread I made.

Honey Wheat Bread

Honey Wheat Bread

This recipe makes 2 loaves of bread, but since this was my first time making it, and since there is only one loaf pan in the apartment, I made a half recipe.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking) plus additional for topping
  • 1/2 cup warm water (105-115°F)
  • 2 tablespoons active dry yeast (from 3 packages)
  • 1/2 cup mild honey
  • 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus additional for buttering pans
  • 3 cups stone-ground whole-wheat flour
  • About 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • Vegetable oil for oiling bowl
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten with 1 tablespoon water
  • Special equipment: 2 (8- by 4-inch) loaf pans

DIRECTIONS

Heat milk in a 1 1/2- to 2-quart saucepan over low heat until hot but not boiling, then remove pan from heat and stir in oats. Let stand, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until cooled to warm.

Stir together water, yeast, and 1 teaspoon honey in a small bowl; let stand until foamy, 5 minutes. (If mixture doesn’t foam, discard and start over with new yeast.) Stir yeast mixture, melted butter, and remaining honey into cooled oatmeal.

Stir together whole-wheat flour, 1 1/2 cups unbleached flour, and salt in a large bowl. Add oat mixture, stirring with a wooden spoon until a soft dough forms. Turn out onto a well-floured surface and knead with floured hands, adding just enough of remaining unbleached flour to keep from sticking, until dough is smooth, soft, and elastic, about 10 minutes (dough will be slightly sticky). Form dough into a ball and transfer to an oiled large bowl, turning to coat. Cover bowl loosely with plastic wrap and a kitchen towel; let rise at warm room temperature until doubled in bulk, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

Lightly butter loaf pans. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead several times to remove air. Divide dough in half and shape each half into a loaf, then place 1 loaf in each buttered pan, seam side down, tucking ends gently to fit. Cover loaf pans loosely with a kitchen towel and let dough rise in a draft-free place at warm room temperature until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 375°F. Lightly brush tops of loaves with some of egg wash and sprinkle with oats, then bake until bread is golden and loaves sound hollow when tapped on bottom, 35 to 40 minutes. (Remove 1 loaf from pan to test for doneness. Run a knife around edge of pan to loosen.)

Remove bread from pans and transfer to a rack to cool completely, about 1 1/2 hours.

(Recipe courtesy of epicurious.com )

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Don’t be afraid to make something new, or put a little time into your cooking!  After making this bread, I realized that, not only was it cheaper in the long run to just make my own bread, but it was also a great experience.  And now, since I know the basics of bread making, I can make all different kinds!  So get off Facebook, and get in the kitchen and make some bread!  Everyone will be jealous, you’ll see! Enjoy!