Daring Bakers’ Challenge : Scones!

Hi everyone!

Here is a Daring Bakers’ challenge I did not fail yay! My other try with the starter is on its way!

Audax Artifex was our January 2012 Daring Bakers’ host. Aud worked tirelessly to master light and fluffy scones (a/k/a biscuits) to help us create delicious and perfect batches in our own kitchens!

I had never eaten scones (a.k.a biscuits) before (I know, I know, don’t judge me!). It’s good, flaky, a light taste of butter and is quite easy to make when somebody like Aud from Audax Artifex tell you all you need to know so that they don’t come out flat (like triple sifting the dry ingredients).

I had fun doing these! I would recommend to double or triple the recipe because I had like 5 scones 😉 Also don’t wait for them to become too brown, I should have taken them out of the oven before. They were great anyway! So this is easy, cheap and delicious, what are you waiting for? Go bake them, right now 😉

scones

Here is the original recipe given by Audax Artifex

 

Basic Scones (a.k.a. Basic Biscuits)

Servings: about eight 2-inch (5 cm) scones or five 3-inch (7½ cm) scones

Can be doubled


Ingredients

1 cup (240 ml) (140 gm/5 oz) plain (all-purpose) flour

2 teaspoons (10 ml) (10 gm) (1/3 oz) fresh baking powder

¼ teaspoon (1¼ ml) (1½ gm) salt

2 tablespoons (30 gm/1 oz) frozen grated butter (or a combination of lard and butter)

Approximately ½ cup (120 ml) cold milk

Optional 1 tablespoon milk, for glazing the tops of the scones

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Directions:

1. Preheat oven to very hot 475°F/240°C/gas mark 9.

2. Triple sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl. (If your room temperature is very hot refrigerate the sifted ingredients until cold.)

3. Rub the frozen grated butter (or combination of fats) into the dry ingredients until it resembles very coarse bread crumbs with some pea-sized pieces if you want flaky scones or until it resembles coarse beach sand if you want tender scones.

4. Add nearly all of the liquid at once into the rubbed-in flour/fat mixture and mix until it just forms a sticky dough (add the remaining liquid if needed). The wetter the dough the lighter the scones (biscuits) will be!

5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board, lightly flour the top of the dough. To achieve an even homogeneous crumb to your scones knead very gently about 4 or 5 times (do not press too firmly) the dough until it is smooth. To achieve a layered effect in your scones knead very gently once (do not press too firmly) then fold and turn the kneaded dough about 3 or 4 times until the dough has formed a smooth texture. (Use a floured plastic scraper to help you knead and/or fold and turn the dough if you wish.)

6. Pat or roll out the dough into a 6 inch by 4 inch rectangle by about ¾ inch thick (15¼ cm by 10 cm by 2 cm thick). Using a well-floured 2-inch (5 cm) scone cutter (biscuit cutter), stamp out without twisting six 2-inch (5 cm) rounds, gently reform the scraps into another ¾ inch (2 cm) layer and cut two more scones (these two scones will not raise as well as the others since the extra handling will slightly toughen the dough). Or use a well-floured sharp knife to form squares or wedges as you desire.

7. Place the rounds just touching on a baking dish if you wish to have soft-sided scones or place the rounds spaced widely apart on the baking dish if you wish to have crisp-sided scones. Glaze the tops with milk if you want a golden colour on your scones or lightly flour if you want a more traditional look to your scones.

8. Bake in the preheated very hot oven for about 10 minutes (check at 8 minutes since home ovens at these high temperatures are very unreliable) until the scones are well risen and are lightly coloured on the tops. The scones are ready when the sides are set.

9. Immediately place onto cooling rack to stop the cooking process, serve while still warm.

scones3

Banana Bread with Chocolate

Banana Bread

Hi everyone!

I had this recipe on my to do list for a while now. I found it in a magazine I receive each month, Coup de Pouce, it has a great deal of yummy recipes. I always destroy my magazines by just tearing out all the pages that I want to keep and recycling the rest. So I do have a huge stack of recipes and other stuff (really need a paper Pinterest). I need to try some from time to time, but if they are all as good as this one, I might have that stack all my life!

I cannot say I have always been fond of banana bread, it’s quite a recent addiction! I found out yesterday that my mom doesn’t like banana bread or muffin which might explain my late meeting with this delicious baked good!

This recipe is very moist and tasty and has chocolate so it can be termed “heavenly goodie”! You mignt want to add some walnuts to the bread, this would just be perfect! You will need some plain yogurt too which reminds me I need to find another recipe to do with all that yogurt left!

I wanted to tell you that I will not be able to post as often as I did before because of school and other stuff going on. But I will try to bake as often as I can and of course will be posting for the Daring Baker’s challenge each month!

Recipe from Coup de Pouce (Pour vous mes lecteurs francophones, elle est en français)

food

Banana Bread with Chocolate
1 1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 very ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 oz semisweet chocolate, roughly chopped (I just had 3 oz, but it was perfect like that)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Lightly grease a loaf pan.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the flour, the baking powder and the salt.
  4. In a medium bowl mash the bananas and mix with the yogurt and the baking soda. Let it rise (I didn’t really wait for it to rise so you can ignore this step).
  5. In another bowl mix the remaining ingredients (egg, sugar, vegetable oil, vanilla).
  6. With a spoon, incorporate the banana mix in the egg mixture. Then pour this preparation on the dry ingredients. Stir until the dough is moist. Don’t overmix.
  7. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan. Bake 50 to 60 minutes, until golden and tester comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Flip onto a wire rack and cool completely (I couldn’t wait that long!). Cut into slices. Serve.

belle2

DIY Tea

Hey everyone!

I hope you had an amazing Christmas time and a great 2012 so far! I did, I went to Disney World, what could be bad about that? It was our second time and we loved it all over again! We had some great hot days and some very cold ones (nothing compare to Montreal, but still!).

So I wanted to share this homemade gift I did for my boyfriend. I’m a bit late I know but I couldn’t tell you before I gave him (he would have known I lied) and after we were gone to Orlando.

Yes you did read that I lied to him. Let me explain! Each year, for the last 4 or 5 years my boyfriend’s family do a homemade gift exchange for a person we randomly pick. So this year, once again, because I picked him last year too, I had my boyfriend and I had to skillfully hide that from him. So I made an arrangement with my mother-in-law so that I could tell him I did my gift for the person she picked instead. I pushed the trick even to the point of doing another false-gift so that he trusts me *mischievous laugh*. In the end he was really surprised and I was happy 😉

DIY Tea

I made four flavors of tea. I bought the tea leaves and I dried some fruits. Here are the different flavors :

Peach white tea

Apple and Cinnamon green tea

Strawberry Green Tea

Pomegranate, apple and strawberry white tea

You can go wild with the flavors, you can make about every combinations you want. You can also add nuts if you want.

To dry the fruits cut very thin slices of each fruit (the thinner the less time to dehydrate the fruits) and put them in the oven at about 150F (my oven doesn’t go lower than 170 F but it did the trick).

Then assemble in little jars and add a label to identify the different flavors.

I’ll be back with desserts very soon! I have my eyes on a couple of recipes I really need to try!

DIY Tea