Cinnamon Chip Scones

Cinnamon Chip Scones

Cinnamon Chip Scones

You know how, when you eat a potato chip, one is never enough?  Like that certain brand of chips that claim ” you can’t eat just one.”   Well, these scones are like that.  Rich with butter, they are studded with sweet, spicy cinnamon chips.  If you would like to enrich them even further you may add chopped nuts.

Spicy, cinnamon chips scattered throughout.

Spicy, cinnamon chips scattered throughout.

We love these scones, and being a cinnamon lover, I like to add some ground cinnamon to the dry ingredients.  Also I keep buttermilk powder in the house, so when a recipe like this one calls for buttermilk, I just measure out the correct amount of dry powder and add water to equal the amount of buttermilk needed.

Scones are always best eaten while they are still warm, and these are no exception.  Of course two people probably are not going to eat eight scones while they are still warm, so to get that same warmth, just zap one quickly on medium heat in the microwave.  That’s what we do for a quick breakfast with coffee.  Frequently I will make scones while I’m making dinner, so we have one for dessert while it is warm, and then the rest are ready to be reheated as needed for breakfast(s).

CINNAMON CHIP SCONES

SERVINGS:   Makes 8 scones

You will find many uses for these packaged cinnamon chips.

You will find many uses for these packaged cinnamon chips.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4  teaspoon salt
  • 1/4  cup sugar
  • 1/4  teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2  cup butter, preferably unsalted
  • 1/2  cup buttermilk  (or 1 Tablespoon vinegar in a measuring cup,. add milk to  1/2  cup mark.  Stir to combine.)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2  cup cinnamon chips
  • 1/4  cup chopped nuts (optional)

1.  In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and sugar.

2.  Cut in butter with pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs, with a few chunks of butter still visible.

3.  In a separate bowl, whisk together buttermilk, egg and vanilla.  Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients, and stir to combine.  Stir in cinnamon chips and nuts, if using.  Do not over mix the dough.

4.  Scrape the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead it gently just until it holds together..  At this point you may pat it into a circle about 8 inches in diameter,  cut  into 8 triangles, and transfer to baking sheet;  or you can scoop up about 1/3 cup dough, and place on parchment lined baking sheet for a “drop-style” scone.  That is how I made the ones pictured here.

Crispy edges, soft and tender inside.

Crispy edges, soft and tender inside.

5.  Bake in a preheated 400*F oven for 12 – 14 minutes, until they’re golden brown.  Remove from the oven and serve warm.

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These deliver on their promise. What’s better than cinnamon when it’s warm!

SOURCE:  King Arthur Flour,  The Baking Sheet

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Rum Raisin Cranberry Muffins

You know something?  I’m not happy  when certain behaviors (on my part) become expectations.  You do something say, twice, and suddenly it becomes your job and other people now expect it from you.  Does this happen to you?  What I do to try to prevent this is to change things up frequently.  For instance just the other morning Mr. D. asked me “got any scones?”  Now, why would he expect me to have scones available—because in the past few weeks I made two or three different kinds of scones, and now he wants them all the time.  See what I mean?   BUT this week, there are no scones!   No, we are taking a break for a while, because I am off in a new direction.  This week it’s muffins.

Rum Raisin Cranberry Muffin

Rum Raisin Cranberry Muffin

Muffins are the replacement for scones.  Not just any muffins.  Ones in which the raisins and cranberries have been soaked in rum for a while before adding to the batter.  And there’s orange peel and spices in there, too.  After one of these with your morning coffee, you’ll be whistling a new tune as you leave for work.   ” Hi Ho, Hi Ho, it’s off to work I go.”  or “whistle a happy tune, whenever you’re feelin blue”, or, “whistle while you work, Tra-la-la-la-la-la.”   OH, my,  I think I’m getting into my happy Christmas Spirit a little early here.  But seriously, these muffins are way good, and  healthy too, so its OK to have one and not have feelings of guilt..

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When I decided to make these I did not have a recipe, just an idea of what I wanted to create.  So I turned to my King Arthur Baking Sheet for a basic cranberry  muffin recipe and then did some major modifications to come up with this combination of flavors. Heating the rum mixture causes the alcohol content to evaporate, leaving behind a faint rum flavor, but also plumps up the raisins and cranberries.  However, if you would prefer not to use rum, you may substitute either apple cider or apple juice, or even orange juice.

RUM RAISIN CRANBERRY MUFFINS

YIELD:   1 dozen muffins

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/4 cup dark rum
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1  1/2 cups regular or white 100% whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk powder or non-fat dry milk powder
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts, optional
  • 1 Tablespoon finely grated orange zest (orange peel)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil or melted butter

1.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Grease the wells of a muffin pan, or line with papers.

2.  Combine the rum, raisins and cranberries in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil over medium-low heat.  Remove from heat.  Cover and let cool for 10 minutes or so while you continue with the recipe.

3.  In a large bowl whisk together the dry ingredients.  In another bowl whisk together the  eggs, orange zest, milk, and oil or melted butter.

4.  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, stirring just until barely blended, add in the cranberry/raisin mixture with their juice, and continue to blend them into the batter without over mixing.   Fill the muffin cups about 3/4 full.   Divide all the batter evenly among the cups–they will be almost full.

5.  Bake for 18 – 20 minutes until they’re golden brown, and test done with a toothpick.  Remove from the oven, leave in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire cooling rack to finish cooling.

Rum Raisin Muffins after baking

Rum Raisin Muffins after baking

GLAZE     Not necessary, but it really puts the finishing touch on these muffins. (It’s the frosting on the cake! )

  • 2 Tablespoons orange juice, apple juice or apple cider
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

In a small saucepan (or use the microwave), stir together the glaze ingredients.  Bring just to a boil to dissolve the sugar.  Dip the tops of the warm muffins into the glaze.  As it cools is becomes a sweet, crunchy little cap on the muffins.   Cute!

Muffins with Glaze

Muffins with Glaze

So good with coffee!

So good with coffee!

SOURCE:  based on a recipe from King Arthur Flour

Cap’n Crunch Scones

Cap’n Crunch Scones

Cap’n Crunch is haunting me!…  I thought I was done with him years ago, but here he is back again; reinvented in a new form.  Oh, but what a form it is!   Scones, one of the (many) loves of my life, containing “The Cap’n”, plus cream, plus corn.  A rather odd combination, but somehow it works, and the resulting scones are just great.  You must try them and see for yourself.  They’re not just for breakfast, and definitely not just for kids.

In my previous experience with Cap’n Crunch cereal, when eaten for breakfast it seemed to soak up the milk and become very soggy, thus losing its appeal for me.   I prefer to snack on the cereal dry which provides lots of crunch—of course, that’s what the name says it should do, so what’s up with becoming so mushy when wet?   I know, I’m rambling, so back to the point;  in this recipe you want the cereal to become mushy so you puree it to get crumbs, then add cream for the crumbs to soak up.

CAP’N CRUNCH SCONES

YIELD:   Makes 8 large scones

CEREAL PUREE

  • 1 cup Cap’n Crunch Cereal, ground in the food processor
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream

SCONES

  • 1 1/4 cup frozen corn, thawed
  • 1/2 cup Cap’n Crunch Cereal
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold, unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup cereal puree, from above
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon butter flavor (optional)

GARNISH

  • 1/4 cup cereal puree, from above
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • additional Cap’n Crunch cereal for garnish

DIRECTIONS

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, or grease a scone pan.

2.  For the cereal puree:  Grind 1 cup of cereal in the food processor; place in a bowl or measuring cup and add the heavy cream.  Stir; set aside to soak while you measure the rest of the ingredients.

Pureed cereal with cream added.

3.  For the scones:  Put the corn and 1/2 cup cereal in the food processor and puree until smooth.**  Place the mixture in a bowl and whisk in the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt.  Cut in the butter until it’s in lumps the size of peas.

   ** My corn was still a little frozen, so I didn’t get a smooth puree.

Add the 3/4 cup cereal puree, egg, vanilla, and butter flavoring, if using.  Mix until the dough comes together, then pat into an 8-inch circle on the prepared pan, or portion the dough into the wells of the scone pan.  If baking on a sheet pan, cut the dough into 8 wedges, then back up each wedge so there’s 1/2″ of space between each one. ( Leave adequate room between them as they tend to spread a bit.)

4.  Combine the 1/4 cup cereal puree and 1/4 cup heavy cream and use to brush the tops of the scones and then decorate each one with additional pieces of cereal.

Brush tops with more puree and decorate with pieces of cereal.

5.  Bake for 20 – 25 minutes, until the tops are golden brown.  Remove from the oven and serve warm.

Warm from the oven. Ummmmh, so good!

SOURCE:   The Baking Sheet,  King Arthur,  Holiday 2012

Pumpkin Ginger Scones

Pumpkin Ginger Scones

Pumpkin used in baked goods seems to be gaining in popularity.  It is one of the most common flavors of Fall and gets used right through the Holidays.  Most typically it gets made into pies and served as dessert, however I am seeing more and more recipes for pumpkin used in breads, muffins and scones.  I love pumpkin in any form, I am also crazy about scones and as most of you know by now, crystalized ginger.  So when this recipe with those three magic words as its title found its way into my house recently I was preheating the oven before I got to the end of the recipe.

An absolutely lovely breakfast item they are full of flavor from the spices and dried fruit, and they also have a pleasant bite from the ginger bits that will get you going in the morning.  They are extremely easy to mix together, bake up in a jiffy, and you can be enjoying them within an hour.  They are wonderful warm from the oven, but also reheat nicely in the microwave.  This is another recipe you might want to have handy for Thanksgiving morning.  If you are having house guests, set out a basket of muffins and scones, hot coffee and juice and let your guests help themselves to breakfast.

INGREDIENTS

YIELD:  Makes 8 scones

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 Tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

    Essential ingredients: pumpkin, raisins, and crystalized ginger.

  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/2 cup ( 1 stick ) cold unsalted butter
  • 1 cup raisins ( use golden, dark, or some of both )
  • 1/2 cup crystalized ginger cut into fine dice
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg

DIRECTIONS

1.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment, or lightly grease a scone pan.

2.  In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt and spices.  Cut in the butter until it’s the size of peas.  Stir in the raisins and ginger bits.

3.  Stir the pumpkin, vanilla, and egg together and add to the dry mixture, mixing until the dough comes together.  Pat the dough into a circle on the prepared baking sheet, or scoop into the wells of your scone pan.

4.  Cut the dough into 8 wedges with a greased bench knife or other knife.  Pull the scones back away from each other to give them 1/2″ space between them.  Bake for 14 – 17 minutes, until golden brown.  Remove from the oven and serve warm or cold.  (They are best warm!)

Fresh out of the oven, just waiting for YOU!

SOURCE:    The Baking Sheet,  King Arthur Flour,  Holiday 2012