I have a stupid love for scones. Ever since I started dating Ruark and spending holidays at his parent’s house, they’ve intrigued me. I’d sit drinking tea in the kitchen while his dad, Kevin, worked butter and flour together, and as the house slept the air would fill with sweetness. By the time the fluffy pastries were cooling on the counter, we’d be on our third cup and all gathered at the table. And since I could not personally eat the scones, I inherited Kevin’s base recipe, which I’ve adapted in numerous ways over the years.
For the next three Mondays, I’ll be bringing you three new versions of scones I’ll be bringing in miniature form to a benefit for C-CAP, an organization that works with public schools across the country to prepare at-risk high school students for college and career opportunities in the restaurant and hospitality industry. I’m teaming up with seven other bloggers to provide loads of sweet treats that guests will sample while my darling pastry chef friend Stephen Collucci and master chocolatier Mehdi Chellaoui give demos. There will be door prizes, wonderful company and lots of heart abounding for a good cause. Continue reading
I love the holidays, and I love my friends and family. I love my dog, and my apartment, and my city (NYC or bust, baby). I love nights out with a good friend (hi Erin!) and long conversation over a bottle of red (why would he ever tell you those things? I’m still pondering).
I love waking up tired, sitting in front of a huge monitor working on sourcing and writing and recipe-ing, and pondering the big questions, such as “have I ever seen the rain coming down on a sunny day?”.
I love uploading photos on my computer and then unearthing one of something sweet. That I baked a few weeks ago. And drafted a blog post of. And never finished.
Dusty Jacqueline, tricks are for kids.
I love making scones. They’re incredibly quick to whip up for a family/friendy brunch as I learned from my dear friend Ruark’s father, Kevin. He would make the biggest, fluffiest, sweetest looking scones that I would drool over as I watched them being eaten (he or Ruark or Ruark’s mom Chris would have also made me some incredible omelet or something so trust me I wasn’t playing a sad song on his sister’s violin or anything).
Royal Pear and Coriander Scones
Are you excited about the Royal Wedding?!?!I can’t particularly say I am. Of course I do regress to my little nine year old self with the idea of tiaras and fancy dresses and a gal becoming a princess. But that excitement quickly turns to nausea as Kate is continually snubbed for being a “commoner” and the haughty opinions of the aristocracy are tossed about. I don’t believe in hierarchy between people, especially as we’re all thrust into a body somewhere on earth in a crazy lottery devised by that-I-know-not.
But I’m aware of this event through a grapevine situation – my roommate his hosting some friends to watch the wedding this weekend. To neutralize the enjoyment factor between their differing desires to watch the wedding they’re making a drinking game of it – I think the repeated usage of the word “commoner” is a dangerous one to commit to drinking with in this case, but to each her own!
And, of course, any event makes me think about… food.
So today I found myself with a little time and a desire to make scones.
Mochaccino Scones for Share Our Strength
I love having a reason to bake things other than that I just feel like baking. Or eating.
My roommate works at the Food Network, and tomorrow they’re having an in-office bake sale to benefit Share Our Strength / No Kid Hungry as part of the GREAT AMERICAN BAKE SALE. My roommate doesn’t really bake.
Hence this post.
I had to figure out something that could be made easily two days in advance since I was once again en transit after Tuesday. And something that would fairly represent what I try to put in my pastries (or keep out of it) while still providing a pleasurable treat.
So I made a gluten and dairy free version of the Lemon Genmaicha scones I made last week, bumping up the lemon flavor in both the scone and the glaze and adding a few drops of the hazelnut extract I finally found at the NY Cake Company store downtown (if you’ve never been, go). Continue reading
Lemon Scones with Genmaicha Green Tea Glaze
Years ago a dear friend in college introduced me to Japanese pearl jasmine tea, and we’d sit in her basement apartment drinking out of delicate cups that released an aroma I had never imagined could exist so closely available at my fingertips. Over the next few years I started tasting and buying tea like some people buy wine. I justified the expense because of how healthy this habit is: teas have been shown to provide and help in the absorption of antioxidants, as well as fight certain cancers, reduce blood pressure and help to regulate blood sugar. And when you’ve been living with a chronic illness, healthy habits are what keep your worst symptoms in remission year after year.
I try, in humble thanks, to use my health in small ways to contribute to the healing of others. So I jumped on this Online Bake Sale to Help Japan as soon as I got the tweet. Driving back into NYC yesterday, on a miraculously empty highway, I looked down the Hudson River at the George Washington Bridge a few blocks from my apartment, and was so thankful. As recent environmental and political events continue to show us, many of our current blessings can be taken away from us in mere minutes.
So my contribution to this online bake sale is inspired by those who have been displaced by the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear threat in Japan, and the tea that has, over the years, contributed to my health. Continue reading