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  • Writer's pictureCulinary Cam

The Stuff of Dreams: Cream Scones #FoodieReads

I have been making versions of cream scones for years! I was inspired to make another batch after reading a couple of Bakeshop Mysteries by Ellie Alexander.


On the Page

In Meet Your Baker, we are introduced to Juliet Capshaw who has just returned to her hometown of Ashland and the home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. She is estranged from her husband, a chef on a cruiseline where she was the pastry chef, and stepped back in to helping her mom run Torte, a family-run bakeshop that's a favorite for locals and tourists alike. They dish out "bakeshop wisdom with a side of pie" (pg. 21). In this novel, Juliet works with local law enforcement to solve the murder of one of the festival's board members that happened in Torte.


In A Batter of Life and Death, Juliet is competing in a reality baking show set in Ashland. When a despised chef and fellow competitor turns up murdered, it's time for another mystery to be solved.


These books are breezy, but fun for foodies and mystery-lovers alike. I completely relate to Juliet and how she cooks. "Cooking for me is a sensory experience. When I have time, I love to experiment with recipes, allowing the scent and flavor of a simmering sauce to direct my palate" (pg. 88, A Batter of Life and Death).


On the Plate

There is a lot of food in these books. Lots of sweets, but there was a savory side as well. "With fall on my mind, I thought I’d try an apple-inspired sandwich for today’s special. I chopped organic Rogue Valley apples and shredded a pork loin that I had chilling in the fridge. I tossed them in apple cider vinegar, salt and pepper, and a splash of olive oil. Pork and apples tend to pair well together. I’d serve it in a baguette with arugula and Fontina cheese" (pg. 64, A Batter of Life and Death).


But I was inspired into the kitchen by this sentence in A Brunch With Death which is a short story in the series. "'I was telling your mother the other morning that I never liked scones prior to marrying her. I don’t know how you Capshaw women do it, but your scones are the stuff of dreams.' The Professor’s eyes twinkled'."


Jake, too, didn't really like scones before he married me. Truth be told, he will still pick almost any other baked good besides a scone. But he has admitted that mine are the only scones he likes. I'll take it!


Ingredients

  • 2 ½ cups flour

  • ½ cup organic granulated sugar

  • ½ teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 8 Tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces

  • 2/3 cup heavy organic cream plus 1 Tablespoon

  • 1 egg

  • 2 dozen or so organic berries (I used blackberries for this batch)


Procedure

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.


In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda and baking powder. Using a pastry cutter, blend the butter into the dry ingredients until the dough resembles pea-sized chunks.


Add the cream and butter, using a spatula to form a ball. Transfer to a floured surface and gently press into a disc. At this point, you can use a cookie cutter or simply cut the disc into wedges.


Gently slice each scone through the center with a floured knife. Put a few berries in the center. Replace the top on the scone and lightly pinch the sides closed.


Drizzle a tablespoon of cream on the tops of the scones. Bake at 400 degrees for 12-15 minutes. The scone will be nicely raised and slightly golden.


Remove the scones from the oven and set them on a wire rack to cool slightly. You can make a berry glaze to go over the top or just serve them with clotted cream and a tart citrus curd. Either way, these scones are the stuff of dreams.


I am linking post to our online #FoodieReads group. Here are the other readers' books for June.

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2 Comments


Wendy Klik
Wendy Klik
Jun 17, 2023

Sometimes you just need a light fun read.

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Camilla M. Mann
Camilla M. Mann
Jun 24, 2023
Replying to

Right?!?! And I have been reading a lot of light, fun reads. LOL.

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