Quick Baking {Cinnamon Scones Recipe}

So many times, I want to bake, I crave baked goods, but I’m short on energy. When that happens, I turn to scones. They are easy, rely on very little leavening (which makes them a breeze even at my high altitude), don’t require a mixer, and are out of the oven ready to eat in less than an hour. Perhaps the best part is that they don’t look like they are as easy as they are and impress people. However you slice it, scones are an all-around win.

So, when I realized that my friend’s birthday was the day before (luckily, she was out of town on her actual birthday…) and I didn’t have a gift, I took the easy way out and baked for her. It was already 3pm, and it was high time for me to figure out what on earth I was going to make for dinner. Which meant that I really only had one choice: scones. It was a delicious choice, to be sure, and I was ready to try a new recipe.cinnamon scones 2

I picked cinnamon scones from Brown Eyed Baker, who adapted her recipe from Two Peas and Their Pod, because I had a bag of cinnamon chips in my pantry just waiting for me to try them. It was the perfect opportunity.

I wasn’t wowed by the chips, and I might consider ordering cinnamon chips or cinnamon bits from KAF in the future, but scones lived up to every bit of hype I’ve given them. They were easy, quick, and looked great. And they tasted great. We’ll be making them again soon.

cinnamon scones

Cinnamon Scones

from Brown Eyed Baker

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons cold butter, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup cinnamon chips
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon milk (or cream if you have extra)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, 3 tablespoons sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and salt. Using your fingers (powder-free latex gloves are great here), cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. You want the butter to be mostly pea-sized, with some lumps smaller and a few a bit bigger. Stir in the cinnamon chips. Pour the cream over the ingredients and stir briefly until a dough forms–don’t over mix.

Turn the dough onto a floured counter and knead by hand just until it forms a ball, gathering in all the dry parts. Pat the dough into a 3/4 inch thick circle. Cut the dough using a bench scraper into 8 triangles.

Place the scones on the parchment-lined baking sheet. In a small bowl, combine the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Using a pastry brush, brush the scones with milk then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Bake the scones for 12-17 minutes, or until lightly browned. Cool the scones on a cooling rack before serving.

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The Ultimate Compliment {Rasberry Almond Bars Recipe}

The other day, a friend called. She wanted to talk about our plans to celebrate another friend’s birthday. We had already discussed having a barbecue, and she followed up with that. She talked to the birthday girl and hashed out a menu, including baby back ribs, potato salad, grilled vegetables…the works. When asked about what kind of cake she would like, the birthday girl replied, “Well, you know I’m not much of a cake person. But those cranberry bars you make! Those would be great!”

Our friend replied that she didn’t make cranberry bars…but could she be meaning my raspberry bars?Raspberry Bars 2

Of course! That was it. Raspberry bars. That was what she wanted for her birthday dessert. Continue reading

Pie Failures {French Lemon Cream Tart Recipe}

I love baking.

But I am not a pie baker.

I’ve never been able to make crusts all that well. I guess I’m not good at leaving things be, and I probably overwork the dough. I try, and I try, and that’s probably the problem. I try too much.

A few years ago, my mom and I decided that everyone should bring a pie for Thanksgiving so the burden for pie didn’t rest with any one person. I thought it was a great idea, even though there was that nagging thought in the back of my head that I really can’t bake pies. I pushed it back, thinking to myself that anyone can bake pie, and I am a good baker–certainly I could bake a pie.

Right? Continue reading

On laziness {Marshmallow Recipe}

Sometimes, the hypocrisy of my laziness astounds me.

I’ve been craving homemade marshmallows. Marshmallows are something I’ve been wanting to make ever since I knew you could. I first tasted a homemade marshmallow without realizing what it was. An aunt who always leaned toward the gourmet brought them to a Christmas party with a mini chocolate fountain back when chocolate fountains were all the rage. They were oddly shaped (square! not squatty ovals!) and they were light and fluffy. Years later, when I saw a recipe in David Lebovitz’s A Perfect Scoop, I realized what I had partaken of, and determined that one day, I, too, would be able to make marshmallows.

Fast forward several years…marshmallows 1

My first two attempts at marshmallows did not pan out. Neither were David Lebovitz’s recipe, so maybe that’s where I went wrong. The first relied on the cold water test for candy, which I thought was a safer bet since I cook at a high altitude and was worried about converting the temperature. They were a bit rubbery, but tasted good. The next was a Dorie Greenspan recipe, and they were better, but still a bit tougher than I expected. I wondered if I would ever succeed at making marshmallows. And after two semi-failed attempts, one would think I would throw in the towel. Continue reading

Why I love my CSA (but you might not) {Kale Chip Recipe}

Last year, Engineer and I decided we were ready to embrace CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture, in which you purchase a “share” and receive a weekly basket or box of produce for a set number of weeks) in an effort to eat more seasonally and locally. In our zeal, we ended up purchasing a share from two different CSAs (which is a long story). Our two CSAs only overlapped by about a month, and it actually worked out nicely. It was nice to have them at the same time to compare and see the differences between the two.

I have to admit, that first year of CSAs was an adventure. It was an adjustment to plan our meals around the produce we received in the boxes, but it was nice to have such fresh produce. It all tasted better than it does from the store, and I loved it. We have signed up for both again this year, and are already getting our lettuce-filled bags from La Nay Ferme.CSA 1 But. I’ve learned a lot about CSAs from my experiences last summer. CSAs are not for everyone, and there are a few things I don’t love about them. Continue reading