Cakes, Tarts and Other Sweet Things
Cakes, Tarts and Other Sweet Things
Blackberry and Fig Hand Scones
Makes 8-10 Ingredients: 1 cup all-purpose flour 1 cup whole wheat flour 1/3 cup brown sugar 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder ½ teaspoon baking soda ¼ teaspoon sea salt 2 tablespoons chilled, unsalted butter 1 large egg ¾ cup milk + 1 teaspoon white vinegar or lemon juice {plus more milk, to finish} 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 1 cup fresh blackberries 2-3 fresh figs, quartered Liquid honey, to serve Instructions: 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. 2. In a large bowl, whisk flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the butter, and cut it in {using a pastry cutter or butter knives} until the mixture is crumbly. 3. Stir in the egg, milk mixture, and vanilla, and mix just until combined {do not over mix}. Here’s where it gets messy! Turn the dough out onto a clean surface and pat down; pour the blackberries over top, and then fold the dough a few times, to incorporate the blackberries. 4. Grab a handful of the dough and delicately shape it into a mound. Place it on the parchment-lined sheet and then gently press a fig quarter on top. Repeat with remaining dough, leaving a couple of inches between each mound {this recipe will yield about 8-10 scones, depending on the size of your hands!}. 5. Brush each scone generously with leftover milk, and then place in the preheated oven to cook until golden brown, about 18-20 minutes. Serve warm and drizzled with honey, if desired.
Mini Peach Cobbler Loaves
INGREDIENTS For the muffins: 1 and ½ cups all-purpose flour ½ cup sugar ¼ cup packed brown sugar 1 and ½ teaspoons baking powder ¼ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon cinnamon Pinch nutmeg 7 tablespoons (not quite 1 stick) unsalted butter 1 large egg 1 large egg yolk ⅓ cup milk 2 teaspoons vanilla 1 and ¼ cups diced peaches (1/4-inch dice) For the topping: 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold ½ cup all-purpose flour ¼ cup packed brown sugar Pinch salt Pinch nutmeg ¼ teaspoon cinnamon DIRECTIONS Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour an 8-loaf mini loaf pan (or a 12-cup muffin pan). Make the muffins: In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Continue cooking until butter browns, swirling pan to encourage even browning. Remove from heat and cool slightly. In a medium bowl, mix egg, egg yolk, milk and vanilla and whisk to combine. While whisking, slowly pour in the warm butter (and any bits that may cling to the saucepan). Whisk until well blended. Add the milk-butter mixture to the flour mixture and fold together with a spatula until no dry streaks remain. Fold in diced peaches. Divide the batter between the 8 loaf cups. Make the topping: Combine all topping ingredients in a small bowl and blend with your fingers until the butter pieces are nearly incorporated and resemble small peas. Sprinkle topping evenly over each loaf. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the tops are golden brown and a tester inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 20 minutes before removing. Muffins will keep covered at room temperature for 2-3 days. (Note: If you're making muffins, the cook time will be more like 15-18 minutes, so start checking them earlier!)
Grapefruit Honey Yogurt Scones
I love grapefruit, but have never baked with it. These scones won't rise up like some other recipes, but I have to try them because the flavor combo sounds so good! Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 cup granulated sugar, divided 2 tablespoons honey 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon salt 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold 1 Ruby Red grapefruit, zested and segmented 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside. Zest the grapefruit and combined zest and granulated sugar on a clean cutting board. Rub together the zest and sugar with the back of a spoon or a plastic bench knife. The sugar will be tinted a pale orange color and smell of grapefruit. Measure 2 tablespoons of the grapefruit sugar and whisk into the dry ingredients. Save the remaining grapefruit sugar for topping the scones just before baking. Segment the grapefruit next. Slice off the bottom and top of the grapefruit, exposing the wheel of grapefruit flesh inside. Use a sharp knife to cut away the peel and pith of the grapefruit, exposing the pink grapefruit flesh. Slice in between the white skin segments to the center of the fruit, at a slight angel, circling the grapefruit. Little grapefruit segments should fall from the fruit as you slice. Set segments aside. Dice cold butter into small chunks and add to the dry ingredients. Using your fingers, and working quickly, break the butter down into the flour mixture until butter chunks are the size of oat flakes or small peas. The butter and flour combined will resemble coarse meal. Add the honey, plain yogurt and grapefruit segments. Toss together with a fork until all of the dry ingredients are moistened by the yogurt and honey. Turn the scone dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Form into an 8 inch circle, about 1 inch thick. Use a knife or a bench scraper to cut the dough into six scone triangles. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Lightly brush the tops of the scones with milk or buttermilk, and sprinkle generously with grapefruit sugar. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes, until golden brown on top and firm but soft in the center. Allow to cool on the pan for 10 minutes before serving. Serve warm with butter and jam. These scones are best served the day they’re made. Recipe and photos via