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Entries in scone (11)

Monday
Jan202014

Pear Chocolate Scones

Pear Chocolate Scones

The melancholy part of winter has arrived for me. After so many months spent in my small one bedroom apartment, working and sleeping, I feel cooped up without an escape. The weather has been frightful, with temperatures in the negative numbers and windchills even lower. Lately, though, no one bats an eye at the forecast anymore. Perhaps we are becoming one with the arctic.

On days like these I wonder what it would be like to live where winter weather doesn't mean that one needs to bundle up from head to toe to stay alive when they walk out the front door.

Pear Chocolate Scones Pear Chocolate Scones Pear Chocolate Scones

In the summer, the sun casts a golden light on the world. The feeling of the sun on the face warms the skin all the way down to the soul. In the winter, the very same sun has a sharper edge. I no longer welcome the sun as before, wishing for cloudy skies instead. The sun's light is harsh, reflecting off the white ground with a blinding intensity. The sun no longer warms, but leaves a bittersweet reminder of the summer months so far ahead and so far behind.

Oh, those winter blues...

Pear Chocolate Scones

On a snow day from school this week, I made a cup of tea and turned on the oven to bake. With the wind blowing its fiercest, I rolled up my sleeves and mixed up a warming batch of scones. Scones are simple fare and this recipe is no exception. The act of mixing together the ingredients by hand, cutting in the butter and forming the dough with my fingers and palms, have a healing effect.

The melancholy air lifts and, for a few moments, I can enjoy my creation in peace.

Pear Chocolate Scones

Pear Chocolate Scones combine subtle flavors in a breakfast treat. Ripe pears are diced up and folded into a basic scone recipe with a few chocolate chunks. The choice of pear is of little consequence—Bartlett, Bosc, or Red pears will do. When finished baking, the scones emerge flaky and ready for tasting. The scones are best enjoyed the day they are prepared.

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Sunday
Jan062013

Raspberry White Chocolate Scones

Raspberry White Chocolate Scones

After a wonderful, relaxing holiday break, it is time to get back into the routine of everyday life. I have been resisting it, wanting to hang on to the languid afternoons and laughter-filled evenings with family and friends. It is hard to face the starkness of reality again. I find my feet tripping over themselves as I settle back into old habits and the mundane quality of everyday activities. I know I must cut ties from the holidays, so to speak, so I can face work and school with a clear mind, but it is proving harder than I anticipated.

My mind keeps drifting to warm fireplaces, hearty dinners, and silly games...

Raspberry White Chocolate Scones Raspberry White Chocolate Scones

I am used to having long, slow mornings where my body can wake up with the sun and I can eat a quiet breakfast as my eyes adjust to the morning light. Life as a graduate student afforded me this small luxury, filling the rest of my afternoon with classes and homework until my job took over and filled my evenings. Mornings became my time to unwind, the small moments to share alone as I mixed up dough in the kitchen or watched the repetitious nature of morning talk shows.

My schedule in the new year, however, is just the opposite. My alarm goes off well before the dawn and I stumble around trying to find my rhythm as my eyes burn under the yellow light of the apartment. I head out to work in the dark, arriving to a windowless room, wishing my tired brain had the capacity to remember to bring a cup of coffee. Most days I do not even see the light of the sun until mid-afternoon passes. My body is slow to adjust to the new routine, confused by the sudden lack of my natural alarm clock.

Oh, I miss my solitary mornings with the sun...

Raspberry White Chocolate Scones

Though my weekday mornings may have vanished, this only strengthens my desire to fully enjoy the slow pace of the weekend mornings. I usually like to make a special breakfast for myself, whether it be waffles, pancakes, or a modest bowl of oatmeal. Over the holidays, I made a batch of these Raspberry White Chocolate Scones. They may be a simple pastry, but they lent a luxurious quality to the morning I made them and the mornings that followed.

I think we all deserve to give ourselves a little morning luxury whenever we have the space. A good scone can start a quiet morning off just right.

Raspberry White Chocolate Scones

The sharp tones of ripe raspberries meet the sweetness of white chocolate in this delightful breakfast pastry. Raspberry White Chocolate Scones are carefully mixed together to keep the raspberries whole and sprinkled with a little extra sugar before baking. Perhaps what the photographs do not display well is just how incredibly moist and tender these scones truly are. These make for a lovely treat on a weekend morning with a cup of tea or mug of coffee.

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Sunday
Dec022012

Lemon Cranberry Scones

Cranberry Lemon Scones

I'm not quite sure when it happened, but somewhere (somehow) I developed a taste for tart foods. Traditionally, I'm a sweet and salty kind of gal, alternately loving the sweetness of a warm chocolate chip cookie and the crisp bite of a salty potato chip. These are the tastes I grew up with in the heart of the Midwest. Rarely a dinner table was without a half empty shaker of salt (the pepper stayed curiously optional), and the breakfast table looked scarce without a sugar bowl at the ready. Certainly sour and tart foods made an appearance, but they never stayed long enough to wash up at the sink and join me in the kitchen.

It is difficult to mess with tradition, but if you push against it hard enough, you can make space for new ones.

Cranberry Lemon Scones Cranberry Lemon Scones

Last winter, I had a quiet affair with grapefruits and sour Greek yogurt. This summer I simply couldn't get enough lemonade. My palate is evolving, expanding to embrace the sour and tart flavors I've neglected for so many years. While just two years ago, these Cranberry Lemon Scones would have been far out of my comfort zone, today they feel like a natural extension of my growing affection for new tastes. The marriage of lemons and cranberries makes for a sharp and charming flavor profile.

I like to imagine that my taste buds are finally growing up.

Cranberry Lemon Scones

The tartest of fruits reside in the winter months. In a way, I find it fitting. The berries have lost their allure, growing tarter with each passing day, and the bright flavors of fall have become subdued. It is time for the grapefruits, cranberries, and lemons to come out to play. The sharp taste of these fruits mimic the chill of the winter air, sweeping the taste buds like the rush of cool wind.

In the dead of winter, when the sweet fruits of long summer days are but a fading memory, the contrast of the tart fruits of winter remind us of the changing of the seasons.

Cranberry Lemon Scones

Lemon Cranberry Scones are delightfully tart. Scones are infused with lemon zest and riddled with cranberries. The dough is quite sweet, especially because the dough is sprinkled with sugar before baking. However, the bright, tart cranberries act as a strong contrast to the sweetness, rendering the scones both sweet and tart. A simple lemon glaze rounds the flavors together. Be warned, however. These scones are certainly not for everyone, but are wonderful for those with a tart palate.

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