Sunday, October 24, 2010

Blueberry Jam

Okay, so I cheated and used frozen blueberries from the grocery. Sue me. What I got out of it was jam with the perfect amount of jiggle and sweetness. Most blueberry jams you buy in the grocery store are too stiff, too sweet, and contain too many whole blueberries, the latter of which makes spreading the jam on toast a bit of a challenge. The jam was brilliant on Michael's sourdough pancakes this morning.

For those of you who care, assuming anyone really reads this blog, I did use the low-sugar/no-sugar pectin when making this jam. In the midst of things, I searched for a good book on jam-making and discovered a movement in favor of not using pectin at all. So I bought The Joy of Jams, Jellies, and Other Sweet Preserves to learn more about the no-pectin method.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Cinnamon Apple Scones

After reading about Apple Cheddar Scones on the Smitten Kitchen blog, I really wanted to make them myself. But I didn't have any cheddar cheese, and besides, I like the combination of apple and cinnamon better. So instead of going down to the local gourmet pastry and bread shop for breakfast, I made these little puppies this morning.

Cinnamon Apple Scones
2 apples
1 1/2 c. whole wheat pastry flour
1 t. cinnamon or to taste
freshly grated nutmeg if you like it
1/4 sugar plus a little for sprinkling on top (I used white sanding sugar for the top)
1/2 T. baking powder
6 T. butter, chilled and cut into cubes
1/4 c. milk (whatever you have will work, I used skim)
1 large egg

Peel and core apples and cut them into 1/16ths and bake them in a 375 degree oven for 15-20 minutes until they're drier. Let them cool. I stuck them in the freezer to cool quickly. Leave oven on.

Put flour, sugar and baking powder into bowl of standup mixer and combine. Add the butter chunks and incorporate using the paddle attachment (or do this by hand with two knives like my mother taught me or a pastry tool). Chop up the apples and add them too. Then add the milk and mix until everything is kind of wet and starting to stick together. Don't overmix.

Flour your countertop and dump out the dough. Form the dough into a disk about 6 inches across. Cut into fourths or sixths, whichever you prefer. Transfer to a baking sheet with a silicone liner or parchment paper.

Brush the tops of the scones with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 30 minutes. Let them cool at least 5 minutes before eating them.