Tuesday, February 8, 2011

An Anniversary Preview

Micah and I are celebrating our four-year wedding anniversary this month. The four year traditional gift is linen or silk, so that inspired Micah to commission a local artist, Sloane Merrick to create a custom piece for my currently-being-renovated office. Sloane is dating someone I have grown up with my whole life so we are still getting to know her, but from what we do know, we adore her and her work. She definitely has some fancy pieces in her gallery of work, so please, take a minute and visit her site by clicking here. We are still quite a ways away from our custom piece of art being completed as we are only in the discussion / ideas phase, but of course I will post a picture once it is complete. I can hardly wait!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Heart Shaped Scones for your Valentine

My friend Jessica taunted me by only TELLING me about some delicious cranberry and hazelnut scones that she made at her house (which I can't get to because of the snow!), AND she wouldn't even give me the recipe because she wants me to try them first. So, it got me thinking about scones and I wanted to make some as equally delicious as the ones Jess described. I searched on my epicurious app and well, I happened to have all the ingredients to make Glazed Raspberry Heart Scones. When you only have slightly less than 1/3 cup sugar, it is hard to find any baked good to make. (I was also out of raspberry jam and substituted with strawberry.) These were fabulous and pretty. Once they came out of the oven I forgot completely about the glaze, but now I figure it was a few less calories I needed to consume this morning. With the jam and the sugar already in the dough, they are plenty sweet without the glaze, but I'm sure the glaze would have made them so much prettier. I also froze half the dough. Since it is only Micah and I eating them, I figured we didn't need to each consume a few tablespoons of butter and half cup each of whipping cream! With the dough I was freezing, I added about 1/4-1/2 tsp. almond extract. I wish I had thought of it before I baked the first half, but alas, I did not. So, the almond is added to the next batch, and I did taste that dough - and WOW, it is going to be amazing! These are reasonably simple to make but they look so complex (in a fancy, delicate way), and they are absolutely delicious. Please note that never once do I say they are healthy. This is a far cry from my raw desserts.

Glazed Raspberry Heart Scones
2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup plus 3 tablespoons whipping cream
1/3 cup (about) raspberry jam (do not use seedless)

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon rose water (optional)

Preheat oven to 400°F. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in large bowl. Add butter; rub in with fingertips until mixture resembles fine meal. Gradually add 1 cup cream, mixing until dough comes together. Turn dough out onto sheet of foil; pat to 1/2-inch thickness. Using 3-inch heart-shaped or round cookie cutter, cut out scones. Gather scraps; pat to 1/2-inch thickness and cut out additional scones. Using floured knife, start at point of each heart and cut horizontally halfway through scones; fill with 1 generous teaspoon jam (jam will show at edges). Transfer to baking sheet. Bake scones until brown, about 18 minutes. Transfer to rack; cool scones until slightly warm.
Meanwhile, mix powdered sugar, remaining 3 tablespoons cream, and rose water in bowl to blend. Spread glaze over scones. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

Bon App├ętit
February 2005

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Snowpocolypse

Oklahoma has been hit by a snow storm that apparently is so severe we haven't seen one like it in 100 years! The proof is my backyard. The railroad tie you see peeking out is about my waist level, and the snow is almost there! It does make for a wonderful week of being snowed in with my husband and baby though. Daisy is quite enjoying snow for her snacks.
And this all brings me to my "fancy find" I want to share. There is a good chance you already know about the iphone and ipad app, Epicurious, but if you don't, well, you need to download it. The app is free and it has tons of recipes and is updated often so it fits with holiday planning or specialialty categories like cocktails even. For valentines day they have sinful desserts and chocolate dessert categories as well as romantic dinner recipes. Since we were anticipating the great snow, I did have to meal plan and grocery shop yesterday and here is my menu for the next week + (the snow is expected to last one week):
Winter Vegetable Soup and Artisan bread
Roast Turkey and Winter Vegetables
Tuscan Turkey Soupy Noodles
Black Beans and Rice
Chicken with balsamic roasted brussell sprouts
Chicken Ceasar Salad
Curried Lentil Soup
Braised Chicken with Dates and Morrocon Spices
Homemade Hummus
Roasted tomatoes with mozzerella
Can you tell I love my veggies roasted? I am sure if they are amazing I will share the full recipe here, but until then, download Epicurious!