Posts Tagged 'tea'

Pipe Dream #207: To Be Oh Fer Cute – Raspberry Heart Scones

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“Oh for cute.” Typical Minnesotan expression of something endearing or attractive.

“Oh fer cute.” My own mild mockery of this phrase.

But these scones are no joke. They are both cute and yummy and potentially yummier because of their cuteness. Is this possible, you ask? Can something be made more palatable because of its attractiveness?

The answer, according to me and also according some relational societal trends, is a resounding yes.

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The dough was a bit of a mess. I had to add a buncha extra flour once I got it  on the cutting board. Do ya best.

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Once cut, they held their shape fairly well, likely due to freezing the scones before baking them. Rustic-y, they are.

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Served with a dollop of cream and a spoon of lemon curd, these babies lack nothing. Not brains, not brawn. Prepare for a second date.

Primping, probably,


Raspberry Scones

Inspired by smittenkitchen

2 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour (or all-purpose flour)
1/2 cup sugar plus 1 tablespoon
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cubed
1 1/4 (6 ounces) cups fresh raspberries
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 cup heavy cream

Preheat oven to 400°F, and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Whisk together the flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Using a pastry cutter, two knives or your fingers, cut in the butter until mixture resembles coarse meal. Try to work quickly and not handle the dough too much so the butter doesn’t melt.

In a small bowl toss together fresh raspberries and 1 tablespoon sugar and stir into flour mixture.

In another small bowl lightly beat egg and yolk and stir in cream. Add egg mixture to flour mixture and stir until just combined.

Turn out the dough onto a seriously well-floured surface pat dough into a 1-inch-thick round (about 8 inches in diameter) and with a 2-inch round cutter (or the rim of a glass dipped in flour) cut out as many rounds as possible, rerolling the scraps as necessary. Arrange rounds about 1 inch apart on baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the tops just start to brown.

Note: If you use a mini cutter like I did, the recipe will make a lot more scones, and you will have to bake them for a shorter time. I did mine for about 12 minutes from a frozen state.

Other Note: You can freeze these after you cut them out so that you can prepare these beforehand. Just freeze them on the baking tray for a half hour, then transfer to a plastic bag. When you bake them, just add a few minutes onto the baking time.

Serve scones warm with whipped cream and lemon curd.

Pipe Dream #181: To Be Contradictory – Butter Pecan Shortbread

“Contradiction is not a sign of falsity, nor the lack of contradiction a sign of truth.”
Blaise Pascal

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Shortbread is really simple and really versatile. It’s a three-man show: butter, flour and sugar, which means that the opportunity for jazzing it up is essentially endless. To this cast, I added toasted pecans and vanilla, which my cookbook assured me turned an average shortbread into “Butter Pecan Shortbread.”

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While these didn’t exactly have the depth of flavor that butter pecan ice cream might have, they were still really excellent. They were everything your afternoon tea cookie should be: crispy, buttery and dainty. I was pleased that the final product was sturdy enough to dunk, but tender enough to crumble. Does that make sense? Might be a contradiction. But actually, sometimes this life holds contradictions.

My most recent contradiction was making plans for the weekend, and then secretly knowing in my heart that  I was going to ditch everyone and go window-shopping all by myself. I say “window-shopping” because it’s kind of hard for the contradiction of “being an intern” and “buying new things” to exist. I bought a floor-length velour skirt for 99 cents. Best day ever.

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Slice. Chill. Bake. Cool.

As with other roll out-type cookies, the key to keeping those pretty edges is to chill the dough before you bake it.

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Enjoy your tea-ful contradictions today.

Au revoir,


Butter Pecan Shortbread

Adapted from The Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook

1 1/4 cups flour

3 tablespoons brown sugar

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter

2 tablespoons finely chopped pecans

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Combine the flour and sugar. Using two knives, cut in the butter to the flour/sugar until the mixture resembles fine crumbs and starts to cling. Sprinkle in the pecans and vanilla, and knead until smooth, forming a ball.

Roll out the dough 1/4 inch thick and cut into desired shapes. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and bake for 10-15 minutes. Watch carefully while baking. When finished, edges should be light golden and the centers of the cookies should be set. Cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

If desired, drizzle with melted chocolate or browned butter glaze.

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