Tag Archives: baking

Cranberry Orange Scones with Orange Glaze

17 Mar

Who’s got two thumbs and learned a hard lesson last week?  This girl!

While it may be a good idea to run with someone who is faster than you, it might not be the best idea to do it every time you run for a week.  I basically spent the weekend feeling like I got hit by a truck!  Womp womp.

Since we opted to pass on St. Paddy’s Day festivities this year (time constraints + training), I was feeling like I needed some Irish pride in my life!  Hence, me making scones late into the evening.  Here is my recipe, if you happen to be feeling festive as well!  I have no clue where this recipe came from, but I’ve been using the same one for 10+ years.

Cranberry Orange Scones with Orange Glaze

Cranberry-Orange-Scones-4


  • For scones:
    • 2 c. flour
    • 7 t. sugar + 3 t. sugar
    • 1 T. grated orange peel
    • 2 t. baking powder
    • 1/2 t. salt
    • 1/4 t. baking soda
    • 1/3 c. cold butter
    • 1 c. dried cranberries
    • 1/4 c. orange juice
    • 1/4 c. half and half
    • 1 egg, lightly beaten
    • 1 T. unsweetened almond milk
  •   For glaze:
    • 1/2 c. powdered sugar
    • 1 T. orange juice

Mix all of the dry ingredients together and then set aside.  In a smaller bowl, mix together cranberries, orange zest, OJ, half and half, and the egg.  When you are ready, cut the cold butter into the dry ingredients using 2 knives until mixture appears crumbly.  Then, add in the egg/OJ mixture and mix until you get a loose dough.  Turn the dough out on a floured surface 6-8 times and then shape it into an 8″ circle. Cranberry-Orange-Scones-1 Cut the dough into 8 even pieces, place on parchment paper, and then brush with milk. Cranberry-Orange-Scones-2 Sprinkle the remaining 3 t. sugar evenly over scones.  Then bake for approximately 12 minutes at 400*F or until lightly browned on top. Move them to a wire rack and mix together the powdered sugar and orange juice to make the glaze.  Drizzle evenly with a spoon and then proceed to do a little Irish jig because you just knocked one out of the park!!! Cranerry-Orange-Scones-3

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Sweet Tooth Sunday

9 Jun

You guys.

SRBarsFinal1

I have been staring at the farmer’s market rhubarb in my crisper drawer all week, pining away for some kind of baked good.  I had planned to make rhubarb brownies, but I am not in a chocolate mood.  Yesterday when I made a trip to the grocery store, I snagged some strawberries on sale.  Naturally, I thought of a strawberry-rhubarb crisp so I took to Pinterest!  I found a nice little recipe, but was missing a few ingredients so I improvised.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Bars (Source: The Tart Tart)

For the crumble/crust:

  • 3/4 cup oat flour (or ground oats, in my case)
  • 1 2/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 t. baking powder
  • zest of half a lemon
  • 1 1/2 sticks butter (I used salted butter and omitted the salt), cubed
  • 1 large egg

Like I said before, I don’t happen to have any oat flour laying around the house.  So, I grabbed my trusty mortar and pestle and ground some old-fashioned oats. Yes, as in Quaker Old Fashioned Oats.

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Holler. At. Me.

Once my dry ingredients were assembled, I stirred in one lightly beaten egg and the lemon juice with a wooden spoon.

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Here’s the thing about making a crisp or a crumble or a pie crust: use cold butter.  You have to.  Trust me. I mean it.  And don’t mix it with your hands because that will warm the butter.  If you have a pastry cutter, good for you.  I am not that shmancy. I used two knives and cut the butter into the flour mixture, like a good little Yankee who was raised by a southern lady.

Once you get the mixture to a consistency where its chunky, press 2/3 of the mixture into a 9″ pan that you’ve buttered and floured.  (You are going to reserve the 1/3 for the top, so feel free to save a little more if you want.  I like a strong base so that they are easier to cut into bars.)  In fact, I encourage you to press the crust in firmly.

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Then, mix together the filling  & spoon it over top of the crust:

  • 2 cups rhubarb, sliced in 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 cups strawberries, sliced
  • juice of half lemon
  • 1 t. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 4 T. corn starch

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Sprinkle on the rest of the topping and bake at 375F for 50 minutes.

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When these came out, I let them cool for a few hours before I cut into them.  They were still warm in the middle and seemed like they wanted to fall apart, but thought better of it.  I didn’t really give mine much time to think about it.

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I mean, how could you not want to bring these to a cookout or  picnic?

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Thin Crust Buffalo Chicken Pizza

30 Jan

Dinners lately have been low-effort, with two exceptions: naan bread and pizza crust.  I wasn’t 100% happy with the way my naan turned out, so I won’t be sharing it just yet.  BUT.  My first pizza crust turned out amazing!  I used a very simplistic recipe I pieced together from online research and from talking with Amanda.

Easy Homemade Pizza Crust

First, I activated a packet of active, dry yeast by dissolving it in warm sugar water.  The trick to activating yeast is getting the right water temperature – the water should be warm to the touch, but not steaming.  I nuked a cup of water in the microwave and then waited for the steam to subside before dumping the packet of yeast in.

After 10 minutes, the yeast should have “bloomed” or looking thick and frothy:

BloomedYeast

In the past, I’ve had to try this technique with several packets of yeast because I just couldn’t get a good bloom.  Its very easy to get discouraged, but it is worth it to keep trying!

While the yeast is activating, I mixed 2 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour (NOT bread flour) and about 1/4 t. salt in a separate bowl.

SaltedFlour

Then, slowly mix the dry ingredients in with the yeast and add a tablespoon and a half of olive oil.

OliveOil

Once a dough ball formed, I turned the dough out onto my pre-floured counter and kneaded it for 6 minutes.  I would say I ended up adding almost another half cup of flour during the kneading process.  Then, I put the dough into a glass bowl, covered it with a damp towel and let it sit for about 30 minutes.

At this time, I decided to split my dough into two equal sized pieces and put half in a freezer bag for later.

Then, I took a stick of butter and lightly ran it over my sheet pan.  I dusted some locally milled corn flour over the butter.  I rolled my dough out thinly, which is my preferred pizza crust, and baked it for 8 minutes at 425ºF.

BakedCrust

Then, I added my toppings and baked it for another 8-10 minutes.  This time, we went with buffalo chicken, ranch dressing, cheddar & Italian cheese mix, and diced red onions.

BuffaloChickenThinCrust

So easy and so good.

Proof I Proofed!

27 Jul

For only my second attempt at making hamburger buns, I think these turned out pretty well.  I compiled this recipe based on about 3 different bread making websites, so I’m not sure who to credit!

Ingredients:
1/2 c. warm water (not so hot that it will burn you, but warm to the touch)
1/2 t. sugar
1/4 oz. pkg active, dry yeast
1/2 c. warm milk (see above comments on the meaning of the word warm)
2 T. butter, melted and cooled
2 1/2 c. bread flour
1 t. salt
1 egg white, lightly beaten

First, proof the yeast by adding it to a bowl of warm sugar water and stirring with a fork until the yeast is no longer in little balls.  The yeast will turn goopy – but be careful not to over mix!

Let it hang out until it gets foamy – this means that you’ve got activated yeast.  I didn’t do this step the first time around and my bread never rose.

Once the yeast is activated, put it in your mixing bowl with the water and sugar and let it stand, covered in plastic wrap, for another 3-5 minutes or until the yeast has dissolved.

While you are waiting, melt and then cool your butter:

Then, stir in the butter, milk and 1 cup of the flour until just combined:

Add the salt and stir again.  Then, add the remaining flour, 1/4 c. at at time until a soft, sticky dough forms.

DO NOT OVER FLOUR – less is definitely more with breads; too much flour will dry your bread out in a heartbeat.

At this point, I scraped down the bowl and the paddle attachment with a spatula.  Then, I switched to my dough hook (because why knead dough by hand if you have a KitchenAid!

I beat the dough for about 5 minutes, until the dough looked smooth and felt elastic.  This dough is pretty sticky even when its done, so don’t over-beat it.

While it was mixing, I greased a bowl with some butter.

Then, I put the dough in the bowl, covered it in plastic wrap and a towel and let it double.  This can take 30 minutes or several hours, depending on your elevation and the temperature.  Mine took about 50 minutes.

After its doubled, gently push down and deflate it.  Turn it out on a floured surface and divide it into 6 balls.

I put mine on a parchment lined baking sheet.

I covered the sheet in a towel and let them sit for 5 minutes to relax the gluten.  Then, I pressed them to flatten them, thinking that they would make larger buns.

In retrospect, I think this step is the only one I will change next time and see if it changes anything.  Once the buns were baked off, they were almost like a flat bread, instead of a bun with a round top. 

Whether you decide to flatten yours or not, the buns do need to rise on the pan for 40 minutes – 1 hour.  They should double in size.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

You know when your bread is ready to go into the oven when the dough holds a slight indentation when you push on it gently.

Give the buns a good egg wash and add any toppings (caramelized onion, sea salt, rosemary, etc.).  Then, bake until the tops of the buns are golden brown and the bottom sounds hollow when tapped.  Mine took about 30 minutes.

These were YUMMY!  I wish I hadn’t flattened them, but it was really just an aesthetic preference.  I used these for turkey burgers with the MIL and I will definitely be making them again soon.

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