Many years ago when I was just starting my career in fashion, I took my first of many trips to London. It was on that first trip I discovered the culture of high tea and scones. I also vividly remember my embarrassment when I ordered scones for breakfast , only to be told that they are only served in the afternoon at high tea. Well, it’s many years later and well we live in a culture where we can have any food we want any time of day or night. So with that I do like the luxury of a nice scone on a quiet, leisurely weekend morning. This is my favorite go to scone recipe. This recipe has evolved over the years and my latest twist is soaking the currants or raisins in Earl Gary Tea enhancing subtly the sweetness of the currants. You’ll be surprised how easy this recipe to prepare scones this delicious.
From by the bay wishing you high tea anytime food memories!
Earl Gray Tea
a blend of India and Sri Lankan black teas which are flavored with the oil of bergamot. This tea is named after the mid- 19th century British Prime Minister Earl Charles Grey.
Earl Grey Tea has several health benefits. As many traditional teas, Earl Grey tea leaves come from the tea plant — Camellia sinensis — and contain compounds called flavonoids and flavanols which are natural chemicals. These tea components are potent antioxidants which with regular use may help with protection from digestive cancer and cardiovascular disease.
Earl Grey Soaked Currant Cream Scones
Makes approximately 8 sconces
1 Earl Grey teabag
3/4 cup dried currants ( or raisins)
2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
6 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 cup ( 1 stick) unsalted butter, chilled and diced
2 large eggs
1 cup chilled heavy cream, plus more for brushing
Demerara or raw sugar (for sprinkling)
In a small bowl add currants and teabag. Cover with boiling water and set aside for 15 minutes. Remove teabag and strain the currants. Set currants aside. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Sift flour and baking powder into a large mixing bowl. Add sugar and salt and whisk together. Add butter and blend with fingertips until mixture resembles a coarse meal. Mix in currants. Whisk cream and eggs in a small bowl and add to the flour mixture. Stir until just combined do not overwork. Transfer dough to a lightly floured work surface and pat to 1 inch round. Cut out rounds using 3 inch cookie cutter. Gather dough to cut additional rounds. Transfer scones to a parchment lined baking sheet. Brush dough with cream and sprinkle with demerara sugar. Bake scones for 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F and continue baking until golden brown approximately 15 to 20 minutes. Cool slightly and serve warm or at room temperature. Scones are best eaten same day.
Farro, an ancient grain that is gaining in popularity. It has a nice nutty taste and chewy texture. I think of using farro the same way I might use rice or couscous. It’s perfect in soups and salads. It’s a delicious side dish, along with any of your favorite proteins. I love it with a great roast chicken. I love incorporating farro into my meals. This salad is easy and delicious using some of my favorite vegetables and flavors. Enjoy!
From by the bay, wishing you farro memories!!
is a type of ancient wheat grain. Triticum dicoccum or emmer wheat produces what is referred to as “true” Farro, Two other wheat species are also considered farro: spelt (Triticum spelto) and einkorn (Triticum monococcum). All three are whole grains husked from whole wheat.
Farro has several health benefits. Farro is considered a high fiber food and an excellent source of protein, fiber and nutrients like magnesium and iron. As an unprocessed whole grain farro added to your diet can assist in reducing risk of stroke, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and asthma. Farro is best used as you would other grains in salads or soups. It can often be used in in place of barley in recipes.
Farro Salad with Roasted Butternut Squash and Mushrooms
Serves 4 to 6
3/4 cup pearled farro
8 ounces mixed mushrooms, chopped
8 ounces butternut squash, peeled, seeded and chopped in 1/2 inch cubes
4 tablespoons olive oil
pinch red chili flakes
2 tablespoons parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon sherry wine vinegar
2 tablespoons roasted and salted pumpkin seeds
fine sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
parsley to garnish
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Toss mushrooms and butternut squash with 2 tablespoons olive oil and red chili flakes. Season with salt and pepper. Place on a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer. Roast the vegetables in the oven until golden and tender, approximately 30 minutes. Let cool slightly. Place in a bowl. Meanwhile in a medium saucepan bring salted water to a boil. Cook the farro until al dente, approximately 20 minutes. Drain well and add the farro to the bowl with the vegetables. To the bowl add the remaining olive oil, vinegar, cheese and pumpkin seeds and mix well. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with parsley. Serve at room temperature.
Like everyone else, it’s a new year and I’m trying to be more thoughtful about what I’m making and thinking about whether a recipe can be more healthy! This week I made a healthier granola using quinoa one of the super foods.
Perfect for topping your morning yogurt!
From by the bay wishing you crunchy quinoa food memories!
an annual herb Chenopodium quinoa, of the amaranth family, is a tall crop plant native to the Andean highlands. Cultivated for it’s edible seeds.
Quinoa is considered a super food. It is a high protein grain and contains all nine essential amino acids. Some of it’s many attributes include that it’s gluten free, a metabolism booster, high in fiber content, high nutrient density, low calorie food. Quinoa is best used as you would other grains.
1 cup rolling oats ( do not use quick cooking oats and check label for gluten-free)
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed and well drained
1/2 cups pepita (pumpkin) seeds, unsalted
1/2 cup blanched sliced almonds
4 tablespoons coconut oil
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup orange blossom honey
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 cup dried cherries, cranberries or golden raisins
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Melt coconut oil in a microwave. I do in 30 second at a time. It may take between 45 to 60 seconds in total. Combine all ingredients except the dried fruit into a mixing bowl, combine well. On a parchment lined sheet spread ingredients in 1 layer. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until brown stirring every ten minutes until mixture is browned. Remove from oven and cool granola. Once cooled add dried fruit. Mix well. Keep in airtight container. It should keep about one week.