Sunday, 14 August 2011

Scone Day: Mixed Jewel Berry Gluten Free Scones and Strawberry and Orange Zest Vegan Scones

Kitchen Play List: BBC Radio 2 Steve Wrights Sunday Love Songs

No brunch today...because I have been baking scones all morning. A good excuse, no? lol.

Scones hot out of the oven...the house smells lovely this morning! lol
My Love has been working so hard this last few months the beloved veggie and fruit garden has been low on the priority on the list of things to do. My Love was right to consider sleeping and other such functions to be of more importance. lol. But the result of this means we have a slight 'jungle' situation going on. Oh dear! So a few weeks ago I sent out an SOS plea to our friends. I asked if they would be willing to spend the day in the jungle to help My Love get on top of things. I don't know why I was surprised when I got replies almost immediately offering us help...our friends are good people. But still we were touched. 

To repay their kindness I offered my services as kitchen slave and would provide them with a tasty lunch, afternoon tea & scones and then a Sunday evening meal when they were all ready to collapse. lol. And this is exactly what I am doing today...and couldn't be happier to do it. It's worth it to see the look of relief on My Love's face and we get to spend the day with our pals. It's a win all round.

We are all lovers of an afternoon tea and scone or two! lol. We are being joined later by S & S who are both gluten free so it gave me the opportunity to try out a recipe for scone, from a very excellent cookbook I purchased last year. Sadly though the recipes tend to be quite expensive to make so I don't use it as much as I would like...who can afford to put 2 cups of maple in recipes all the time? I know I can't. So the recipes tried are rare treats but I would highly recommend Jennifer Katzinger's Flying Apron's Gluten-Free & Vegan Baking Book

The second batch of scones are adapted very slightly from Colleen Patrick-Gourdreau's wonderful The Joy of Vegan Baking: The Compassionate Cooks' Traditional Treats and Sinful Sweets 

I adapted the GF scone recipe very slightly by ommitting the currants and using dried Mixed Jewel Berrys which I'd picked up at the local farmers market. Now I have never made GF scones before so it was a very new experience for I followed Katzinger's recipe through and nearly burnt out my mixer motor. I think US mixers must be stronger or I just need to save up for a Kenwood Mixer I placed it into a container in the fridge overnight and first job this morning was kneading and cutting the dough. Now here's the problem...not so much kneading happened...more shaping the sticky doughy stuff into a lump and quickly cutting scones out. A lot of extra flour was needed for the surface and the cutter and well just to stop myself getting all stuck up! lol. When I got them onto the tray and in the oven I was very relieved. I baked them as per her instructions and then put them onto wire racks to cool. They are quite firm and they split alot but my pal D reassures me that is quite common with GF baking..phew! And as they are made with chickpea flour they have that dark yellowy thing going on. 

The vegan scones I made two adaptions to C.P-D's recipe for Classic Currant Scones...I had bought some beautiful dried strawberries at the same farmers market as I bought the Mixed Jewel Berries and thought that they might taste quite lovely with some orange zest added in. I waited until pals D & B had arrived before making a decision and was heartly told " heck with tradition..let's have the strawberries and zest!" Who am I to argue? lol. This recipe I have used many times and it didn't fail to deliever once again. Large, lush and lovely scones are awaiting us this afternoon. 

I will be serving both scones with a choice of Hedgerow Conserve and Greengage Conserve and lots of hot tea and Gotta keep the workforce energised. 

Gluten Free Mixed Jewel Berry Scones..much darker due to the chickpea flour. And OK not as attractive and their wheaty cousins..but still delicious. Try them for yourself...~R~
Gluten Free Mixed Jewel Berry Scones Made 10 large
(Recipe adapted from Flying Aprons Gluten Free & Vegan Baking Book/Katzinger)

2 3/4 cup brown rice flour
1 1/2 cup plus 1 tbsp garbanzo/chickpea flour 
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp orange zest
1 cup canola oil (I use sunflower)
1 cup of cane sugar (I use demerara)
1 cup of rice milk
3/4 cup of currants (I used Mixed Jewel Berries)

Combine the brown rice flour, garbanzo bean flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and orange zest in a large bowl. In another bowl combine the oil and the sugar and whisk until very well combined. With the mixer on a low speed gradually add the flour mixture and milk alternately a little at a time. Chill the dough for at least 3 hours or overnight. 

Pre heat the oven to 360'F.

Dust your counter liberally with brown rice flour. Knead the currants/berries into the chilled dough and pat the dough into a 2" thick round and cut into desired scone shapes..(recipe calls for wedges but I made good old fashioned scone Place on a parchment paper lined caking sheet, evenly spaced apart. Bake until scones are golden brown and firm to the touch, about 30 minutes. 


Large, lush and lovely Strawberry and Orange Zest Vegan Scones...oh and tasty too! lol
Strawberry and Orange Zest Vegan Scones Made 6 large
(Recipe adapted from The Joy of Vegan Baking/Patrick-Goudreau) 

1 1/2 tsp egg replacer
2 tbsp water
2 1/2 cups plain flour
1/3 cup golden caster sugar
4 tsps baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup vegan marg, cold
1 cup currants (I used dried strawberries)
1/2 cup soy milk
2-3 tbsp extra milk for brushing tops of scones
extra sugar for sprinkling on tops

Preheat the oven to 425'F/220'C/Gas Mark 7. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 

Whip the egg replacer and water together until they are light and frothy. Set aside.

In a large bowl add the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir to combine. Place chilled marg into the centre of the flour mix and using two knives, cut in the marg until the mix resembles rough breadcrumbs. Then add the egg replacer and the milk and gently stir the ingredients together then finish this stage with your hands. The dough will be very soft but pliable. 

Sprinkle flour onto the work surface and place the dough into the centre. Press the dough into a circle and cut out the scones and repeat until the dough is used up. Place onto the lined baking sheets and then place into the preheated oven and bake for 12-15 minutes. 

Enjoy baking! 

Update: Feeling very full after our afternoon tea lol. But the scones were a huge success. S & S really enjoyed the GF scones and are delighted to be taking the remaining scones home! lol. The Strawberry & Orange Zest scones were greatly enjoyed and they were as soft and delicious as they looked. What was a surprise was the reaction to the conserves I chose...they were a huge hit and in particular the Greengage variety. I liked them both. 

I will definitely make the scones again...both kinds. I don't think I have found the perfect GF scone yet so if you have any good ideas I would be happy to hear from you. I enjoyed the Strawberry scones and as is my nature I will keep experimenting there too. lol. But afternoon tea was had and enjoyed and the jungle...oops..sorry garden is looking great. Good work all round I think!