Maple Oatmeal Scones

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This is my family’s all time scone request. They never seem to get tired of this wonderful combination of oats, maple syrup and frosting, so much frosting! This recipe is adapted from Ina Garten, I really change very little and if you follow her recipe to the letter, you will not be disappointed! I decided to write up the recipe anyway for a couple reasons. For one, a few people asked my to and for another, I wanted to work on my short coding skills. I am new to using html code to embed recipes and would like to practice this skill.

This recipe comes together so easily that I did not take many production photos. The dough is sticky but it does have a major advantage in that you can mix and cut the scones out ahead of time and keep them in the fridge (or longer in the freezer) and bake off what you need in the morning.

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I wrap the scones loosely with plastic wrap the night before

The next morning I select the amount I want and transfer to a new pan with a parchment paper.

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You have a couple options here. You can brush the tops with an egg wash to facilitate browning. I recommend that if you plan to leave them plain or add a light glaze. Since I am using a frosting consistency, the tops are not visible, I omit the egg wash.

After the scones have cooled completely, add the frosting. Bonus: these are fantastic with coffee!

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Enjoy!

 

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Maple Oatmeal Scones

  • Servings: About 24, 21/2 inch scones
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Pure maple syrup, buttermilk and oats combine to give these scones a sweet flavor and nutty texture

 credit:Ina Garten

Ingredients

-3 1/2 cups all purpose flour

-1 cup whole wheat flour

-1 cup old fashioned oats, plus extra for garnish

-2 Tablespoons baking powder

-2 Tablespoons vanilla sugar

-2 teaspoons kosher salt

-1 pound, cold unsalted butter, diced

-1/2 cup cold buttermilk

-1/2 cup pure maple syrup

-4 extra large eggs

frosting:

-1 1/4 cups powdered sugar

-1/2 cup maple syrup

-1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the flours, oats, baking power, sugar and salt. Blend the cold butter into the dry ingredients, starting on low speed, until the butter is the size of peas.
  3. Separately combine the buttermilk, maple syrup and eggs. Add to the butter flour mixture and combine just until incorporated, this dough will be sticky.
  4. Dump the dough onto a well floured counter top and pull the dough together. Working with floured hands, pat the dough into a 3/4 inch round and cut out scones using a 2 1/2 inch biscuit cutter. Place the scones onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake the scones for 20-25 minutes until browned.
  5. Make the icing: use the proportions listed to make a thin glaze which can be drizzled over the scones once they have cooled. Or adjust the proportions to create a thick frosting consistency by adding more powdered sugar than listed. Sprinkle with oats for garnish.

 

I prefer to use old fashioned oats instead of instant as they add more texture. Also, if I were making a thin glaze where the top of the scone would show, then I would use an egg wash before baking to give the tops a nice brown color.

Another time saving tip that I often use is to make the scones ahead of time by cutting our the scones and placing them all on one pan, wrapping with plastic wrap and storing in the refrigerator. The next day I can bake off all or some of the scones. They will store in the refrigerator for a week or longer in the freezer, if needed.

 

 

 

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What does an Irishman take to a Cinco de Mayo party?

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A pear, apple and cranberry crisp of course!  Well, maybe that is not so obvious to everyone, but my good friend did recognize my limitations with respect to the Cinco de Mayo party she organized last week. When I asked her what I could contribute to the dinner menu she immediately gave my an assignment that she knew I could handle. Since she was already making a tres leches cake, I was tasked with making a fruit based dessert. Thankfully she did not ask me to make enchiladas!

Originally I wanted to make a strawberry rhubarb crisp but the fruit was not quite ready here as spring has made had a painfully slow start in our area. The grocery store looked more prepared for autumn than any other season. So, I went with a no fail recipe from Ina Garten, her pear, apple and cranberry crisp is one I have made many times and it always comes out delicious, and it is fast and easy!

The “hardest” part is peeling, coring and dicing the bosc pears and honey crisp apples (2 lb. each). The diced fruit is then mixed with the juice and zest of both a lemon and an orange. I used a blood orange as that was what I had on hand.

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I added a full cup of cranberries, more than the recipe calls for but we like them, 1/2 cup of vanilla sugar and 1/4 flour.

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Next came the cinnamon and freshly ground nutmeg. This is all mixed well in a large bowl and then put into a lightly greased 9 X 12 baking pan.

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Up to this point you could argue that this is not too unhealthy of a dessert, however that is about to change. This fruit mixture is good, but it’s the crumble topping that is the real star of the show!

For the crumble combine the 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup vanilla sugar, 3/4 cup brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and 1 cup old fashioned oats. Then add the diced, cold butter (2 sticks, 1/2 lb)

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Cut the cold butter into the dry components. Much like making a scone dough or pie crust, the goal is to have small pieces of butter throughout the mixture.

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Cover the fruit, entirely, with the crumble topping.

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Bake at 350ºF for 50 minutes to an hour. Make sure the crust is nice and brown and the fruit is bubbling.

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I transported the crisp in the pan and we served it at my friends house for a nice ending to a great meal.

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This is best served warm, but I will confess to eating it cold and having no problem! I have substituted different fruit combinations such as peaches and blueberries, plums and cherries and, of course, strawberries and rhubarb. They are all delicious using this same formula. Thanks to Ina for another awesome recipe and to my friend for opening her home to us!

 

It’s Irish Soda Bread Time !

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We are an Irish family and, as I have said before, a family that loves bread. So, of course it would not be right for this holiday to pass without some fresh baked soda bread piping hot out of the oven. Our favorite recipe is from Ina Garten and, although it is not traditional, it is really, really good! We like it so much that I make this recipe several times throughout the year. Even though I will spend an entire day to make artisan breads, and love doing so, there are times when we want a quick, delicious bread for a weeknight meal and this one does the trick.

Like all bread recipes this one starts with flour, 4 cups, 1 teaspoon of baking soda, salt and sugar. If you are watching your sugar intake you do not need to add any, or just downsize from the 4 tablespoons listed in the formula. Honestly, you don’t really need to add any if you do not wish too as there is plenty of flavor and sweetness from the orange zest and currants.

4 tablespoons of cold butter are incorporated, which again is not traditional, but does give the bread a scone like texture (if you add the sugar then you really get the scone/bread hybrid taste!)

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Now it’s time for the wet ingredients which include the leavening activator in the form of buttermilk. The acid from this addition will activate the soda and, along with the heat of the oven hitting that cold butter,  provide the rise in your bread.

Ina’s recipe calls for 1 cup of currants, but I have used cranberries or raisins in the past and both were great, especially the combination of orange zest and cranberries. Although here too I have made substitutions and used lemon zest when my home was devoid of oranges-also delicious!

The dough comes together nicely, although it is a bit sticky, but once you turn it out onto the floured surface and knead it a few times the bread becomes easier to work with. I used my lame to make fairly deep cuts on the surface before placing it in the oven at 375°F.

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The bread is done if it sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom surface, and it needs to cool on a rack for ~10 minutes.

Be patient, if you cut into it while it is still too hot it will be crumbly-remember that scone like quality? Best way to serve it is how ever you like it!

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My favorite way to eat it!

Do try this recipe! It is very easy and worth the short time it takes to pull it together!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone!

Next bread up for me is Black Russian Rye Bread!

 

 

 

Maple Oatmeal Scones and Cinnamon Star Bread

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Long before there was the Food Network or The Cooking Channel there was a little show called Martha Stewart Living. There was nothing else like it at the time and the only broadcast that really showcased recipes and home decorating. It began in 1993 and was very popular moving into the late 90s and early ‘00s and, of course, predated the Internet before it exploded and was readily accessible to everyone. And, no dial-up service does not count! Martha had really cornered the market at that time and it was a big deal if she endorsed or promoted a chef or product. I was busy working full time and raising two toddlers with barely a moment to breath, but I never missed Martha’s weekly show. I didn’t have the time, equipment, culinary skill or money to make her recipes but tried to learn as much as possible. One day she introduced a woman who ran a specialty food store in East Hampton called The Barefoot Contessa. Ina Garten came on the show and I don’t remember exactly what she made for Martha, but she had my attention. Her show began in 2002 on the Food Network and I have been making her recipes every since.

Back in the early ‘00s the Food Network had shows that were hosted by accrediated chefs to teach skills and techniques that were helpful for home cooks and I tried to absorb all that great information. Now, they give cooking shows to celebrities who have no actual culinary credentials. It’s like when MTV used to play music vidoes instead of the train wreck, “reality” TV programming you find there today. But, I digress!

One of my favorite Ina recipes is her Maple Oatmeal Scones. I have made them so many times over the years that I (almost) don’t need the recipe anymore. I make them for Christmas gifts for our good friends that we see each year over the holiday time frame. There are three of us couples and we take turns hosting a dinner. I hosted last year so tonight we head over to one of their homes. We have a real gift for the other two couples but, if I don’t bring a baked good, the gift will be incomplete.

This recipe comes together quickly. Combine the dry ingredients, add the butter and cut into the dry until the size of peas. I go with very large peas!

Combine the buttermilk, maple syrup and four eggs and mix well

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add this mix to the dry and expect an extremely sticky batter!

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I use a lot of flour and pat into a big circle, about ¾ inch thick. You will not be able to knead this dough, its way too sticky. Have lots of flour on hand!

I used a 2 ½ inch round cutter and had a yield of 20 big scones. Be careful to not twist your cutter when stamping out the scones, or you will seal all those great layers that you worked so hard to create!

I made the glaze with the powdered sugar, vanilla and maple syrup but I like a nice, thick glaze, really more like icing, so I used less syrup and just eyeballed the amount until I hit the consistency I wanted.

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Thank you, Ina!

Another delicious recipe I found was Cinnamon Star Bread. I was not going to review this originally so there are no production photos. My family really flipped over this bread so I felt it should be included. I know that there are a lot of star bread recipes out there and I have made savory ones myself but this dough was amazing to work with! It came together quickly and, even though it was cold in my home, the dough rose well with a little extra time. It rolled out nicely after resting and it will be my new go to star bread formula from now on.

It baked up nice and golden and then I added lots of powdered sugar.

I highly recommend both these recipes and hope you enjoy them!