Life is certainly never ever boring. I’ve been running around like a chicken with my head cut off for the past few weeks and I don’t even know how to start writing about it. I keep starting blog posts, but then I never finish them. I feel overwhelmed, but in a good way.
So I’ll just start with the basics.
*If you happen to be reading my blog, you might notice that the site looks completely different. The blog got a whole lot prettier recently (thanks to Randall at Dept3), and I’ve been overwhelmed by the positive response to the new look. Thank you all for your kind words!
*I went to Los Angeles for a long weekend and ate a lot of good food and saw a lot of good friends. Highlights included: meeting Christianna of Burwell General Store (and dining at the fantastic Cook’s County Restaurant, where she currently works), eating a classic beef dip sandwich at Philippe’s in downtown LA, spotting Julie Taylor (Friday Night Lights!) at Intelligentsia, taking in the Pacific Standard Time exhibit at The Getty Museum, and discovering The Thirsty Crow’s amazing happy hour ($5 Manhattans, Moscow Mules, Old Fashioneds, etc.). Overall, it was a fantastic trip.
*Secondly, my first two articles for the Plate & Pitchfork Almanac were published a week ago, so if you haven’t seen them yet I’d encourage you to check out the first issue. The P&P Almanac is a collaboration between a few talented Portland ladies, and the first issue contains great photos, stories, and reports from the Portland food community.
*In a moment of complete and utter insanity, I signed up to run the Shamrock Run. I am not a runner. In fact, I generally hate running. But, my sister talked me into signing up for the Shamrock and so I best figure out how to run a 15k (9 miles) by March. This could be interesting. ;)
*This past weekend, I was hired to do “craft services” (aka provide food) for a commercial shoot and it was a great experience. It’s a lot of work, but it’s also a lot of fun. Strange as it may sound, I really enjoy the challenge. It’s experiences like this enable me to learn more about my abilities as a cook. I love it. Bring on the challenges!
*In the middle of all the madness, I found the time to make these delicious blackberry scones. Yes, I know that blackberries are decidedly not in season in January. But there they were, staring at me from the shelves of my local Trader Joe’s. They were so plump and perfect looking, I simply couldn’t help myself! So, I caved and I bought blackberries in January. (I then made myself feel better by justifying my purchase by using the fresh blackberries in combination with the last of the blackberries in my freezer from last summer’s pickings.)
Honestly, I’m just happy I found time to cook anything at all! In the middle of a busy couple of weeks, these scones were a welcome change from chard and beets.
That being said, you could easily substitute other berries (raspberries, marionberries, blueberries, etc) in these scones. I plan on making them again with the last of the raspberries I have in my freezer!
Blackberry Cream Scones with Lemon Glaze
(Adapted from Eat Live Run)
Note: I tripled this recipe, as I was cooking for 20+ people. I originally wanted to make blackberry sage scones, but realized that I was all out of dried sage. So, I used a bit of dried thyme, which worked nicely.
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 cup white sugar
1 cup blackberries (fresh or frozen)
3 tbsp cold butter, cut into small squares
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon whole milk or cream
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons cream
Preheat oven to 425.
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cut in the butter with your fingers and work mixture together until it resembles coarse sand. Gently cut in the blackberries, making sure to not overmix. You want large chunks of blackberries in the mix.
Add the cream and mix with your hands (or gently with a spatula) until a wet and sticky dough forms. On a well-floured surface, form the dough into a small circle and slice the dough into 8 small wedges. Place wedges on a lined baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, until golden brown.
To make the glaze, mix together the powdered sugar and cream. Add in lemon zest and vanilla, and mix to combine. Once the scones have cooled, drizzle the glaze over the scones.
Note: I forgot to take pictures of the scones after I iced them, so you’ll just have to imagine how lovely they were!