Category Archives: Breakfast

Mini Pumpkin Scones

Mini+Pumpkin+Scone

One of my favorite things about fall is the reintroduction of Starbucks Pumpkin Scones.  I’m not a huge pumpkin fan but those things are flavorful and spiced just right.  Like pumpkin pie without the baby food like constancy (I’m a texture person).  The bad thing about it not being “pumpkin season” is that it’s not easy to find.  Out of desperation I Googlized the recipe and came across a ‘clone’ recipe and have to say that it is fairly spot on.  I wish I could give credit to whoever made up this recipe but like a lot of my giant pile of printed out recipes (this was before Pinterest) I have no idea where it came from.  A few minor tweaks and you have the perfection seen above.

The best part of this recipe?  You can make a whole batch for the price of one scone at the coffee shop.  Bonus!

I made these pretty small which was a perfect size for a tea party with my 3 year old.  They fit right onto the little plates.  It also makes for a great grab and go snack straight out of the freezer (they freeze beautifully).

Mini Pumpkin Scones
adapted from somewhere on the internet

Scones
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbs baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground ginger
6 Tbs cold butter
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
3 Tbs heavy cream
1 large egg

Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
4 Tbs heavy cream
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1 pinch ginger
1 pinch ground cloves

Directions:

1.  Preheat oven to 425 deg F.  Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

2.  Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices in a large bowl.  Using a fork or food processor, cut the butter into the dry ingredients until all the butter in no longer noticeable.

3.  In a separate bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, cream, and egg.  Mix the wet ingredients in the dry just until incorporated.  Do not over mix.  Form the dough into a ball.

4.  Pat the dough onto a lightly floured surface into a 6″ x 10″ rectangle.  Using a large knife or pizza cutter slice the dough into 1/2″ squares.  Place on the prepared baking sheets.

5.  Bake for 10 -12 minutes or until the scones are light browned.  Place on a wire rack to cool.

6.  Combine the ingredients of the glaze together.  Drizzle the glaze over the scones and allow to dry.

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Cinnamon Sugar Pullapart Bread

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Isn’t this a thing of beauty? Tender gooey flakes of cinnamon and sugar deliciousness draped in a sweet vanilla glaze.

When various versions of this bread started to pop up around the blogospher, I bookmarked one (yes I know bookmarking is old school but this was before I discovered Pintrest), noting to myself to make it soon. A few months later I was planning out the dessert to make for a girls night and I came across the recipe again and knew it would be perfect.

We ate it fresh out of the oven with a glass of sweet dessert wine while watching cheesy romantic comedies. Perfect.


Cinnamon Sugar Pull Apart Bread
slightly adapted from Joy the Baker

The Dough:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons (1 envelope) rapid rise yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 Tbs unsalted butter
1/3 cup whole milk
1/4 cup water
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
The Filling:
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
4 Tbs unsalted butter, melted until browned
1/4 tsp salt
The Glaze:
 1/8 cup whole milk
1/4 tsp vanilla
1 cup powdered sugar

1.  In a large mixing bowl whisk together 2 cups flour, sugar, yeast, and salt.  In a separate small bowl, whisk the eggs.

2.  In a small saucepan, melt together milk and butter until butter has just melted. Remove from the heat and add water and vanilla extract. Let mixture stand for a minute or two, or until the mixture registers 115 to 125 degrees F.

3.  Pour the milk mixture into the dry ingredients and mix with a spatula. Add the eggs and stir the mixture until the eggs are incorporated into the batter.   Add the remaining 3/4 cup of flour and stir with the spatula for about 2 minutes. The mixture will be sticky.

4.  Place the dough is a large, greased bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and a clean kitchen towel.  Place in a warm space and allow to rest until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

5.  While the dough rises, whisk together the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt for the filling.

6.  Melt 2 ounces of butter until browned.

7.  Grease and flour a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan.

8.  Deflate the risen dough and knead about 2 tablespoons of flour into the dough. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest for 5 minutes. On a lightly floured work surface, use a rolling pin to roll the dough out to a 12 x 20 inch rectangle.

9.  Use a pastry brush to spread melted butter across all of the dough. Sprinkle with all of the sugar and cinnamon mixture.

10.  Slice the dough vertically, into six equal-sized strips. Stack the strips on top of one another and slice the stack into six equal slices once again. You’ll have six stacks of six squares. Layer the dough squares in the loaf pan like a flip-book. Place a kitchen towel over the loaf pan and allow in a warm place for 30 to 45 minutes or until almost doubled in size.

11.  Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Place loaf in the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is very golden brown. The top may be lightly browned, but the center may still be raw. A nice, dark, golden brown will ensure that the center is cooked as well.

12.  Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 20 to 30 minutes. Run a butter knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the bread and invert onto a clean board. Place a plate on top of the upside down loaf, and carefully invert so it’s right side up. 

13.  Whisk together milk, vanilla, and powdered sugar.  Drizzle over the bread with artistic swirly flourishes.

Due to the layers being exposed to the air, this bread is best the same day.

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Cheater Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon+Rolls
These came to me in a dream.  Literally.  I was dreaming that I was working in an office with Dwight and Jim from The Office. (I had just watched the latest episode) Dwight was running around trying to run the office like a crazy guy and Jim was trying to keep everything calm.  (I think I have seen the show too many times)  Dwight asked me to make something for the staff to eat so I went into the kitchen area and found a can of crescent rolls, butter, sugar and cinnamon.  “I know!”, I thought.  “I’ll make up some quick cinnamon rolls!”  Then I woke up to my daughter calling my name as (heaven forbid) it was 6:30am and she wasn’t up eating breakfast yet.
When I came downstairs and opened the fridge I saw that I had everything I needed to make what I thought up in my dream.  And they were every bit as easy and good as I thought they would be.  Start to finish, including baking, these took me 15 minutes.

To be fair, most likely I have seen these somewhere on the internet and buried them deep in my subconscious until my sleeping brain brought them to the forefront.  I had been trying to think of a use for the can of crescent rolls in my fridge.  Yay for brain power!

You don’t need to melt the butter, very soft butter will do.  I just didn’t want to wait for it to warm up as I didn’t have any already out.  I also used my staple Vanilla-Butternut extract from King Aurthur Flour instead of vanilla in the glaze.  It’s wonderful with cinnamon rolls but vanilla will work just fine as well.

Cheater Cinnamon Rolls

Rolls
1 can crescent rolls (qty 8 rolls)
2 Tbs butter, melted and slightly cooled
4 tsp sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
Glaze
1/4 cup powedered sugar
1/8 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 tsp milk
1.  Heat the oven to 375F.
2.  Open the can of crescent rolls and separate them into individual triangles.
3. Brush the butter on each of the triangles.
4.  Mix the sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl.  Sprinkle an even amount onto each triangle.  You can put as much or as little on as you like depending on how cinnamony you like things.
5.  Roll up each triangle to form the crescents and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet.
6.  Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
7.  While the rolls are baking, mix the powdered sugar, vanilla and milk together to make the glaze.

8.  Let the rolls cool for 5 minutes then drizzle with the glaze.  Serve to your family and friends, making sure to let them think it took you hours.

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Homemade Yogurt

Martha Stuart I am not.  Still, I do like to try my hand at making homemade versions of various every day grocery items just because I can.  Quite a few of them, like angel food cake and lady fingers, were fun to make but not worth my time to do again.  I have fallen in love with greek yogurt ever since it because easy to buy in the store.  My only gripe is the high price compared to standard yogurt although after making it, I now understand why.
With a toddler in the house, we go through lots of yogurt.  Rose loves it with berries, with granola, or with peaches.  She even gobbles it up plain.  This means that if I can make it cheaper, it might be worth a little effort.  Luckily, it’s not that much effort at all to make homemade greek yogurt at and is about half the cost.  Most of the work is simply waiting for the tiny bacteria to do it’s magic.
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Put four canning jars in to a large pot and fill the pot with water about 3/4 of the up the sides of the jars.  Pour whatever type of milk you desire (fat free, 1%, 2% or whole all work great) into the jars, leaving 1 inch space at the top.  Heat the water to boiling and boil softly until the milk is 180 degrees.  The picture shows the thermometer in the water but usually I keep in hooked on the jar in the milk the whole time.

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Take the jars out of the water and put lids on loosely.  Cool until the milk is 110 degrees.  I find this goes more quickly if you place the jars in the sink with cold water and ice/ice packs.  It takes about 20 minutes with that method.  Once the milk is cool enough, add 2 tablespoons of plain yogurt into each jar and stir gently.  A personal size yogurt container is enough for all four jars.  If you use vanilla, the yogurt will have a nice light vanilla flavor as well.
Yogurt+2
I have changed how I do the final step since I first started making yogurt. I used to put the jars in a cooler with hot water and let it sit, refreshing the hot water every few hours.  Then I came across an ingenious method.  Heat your oven up for 5 minutes then turn it off (it doesn’t matter the temp).  Put the sealed jars in the oven and close the door.  Turn on the oven light and it will keep the oven at a nice warm temp for as long as you would like.  This way, I can start it at night and there will be fresh yogurt in the morning.  I like it the best after about 12 hours but it can stay there up to 2.
The next step I do isn’t required as you can definitely just open the jars right away and eat but I find that putting the yogurt in the fridge for a few hours helps to firm it up a bit more.
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You can eat the yogurt straight from the jar but I have found it to be a little watery.  I prefer to drain the whey out a bit to get it to be more like the greek style.  This is easily done by putting a few layers of cheese cloth or a thin bread towel in a strainer and pour in a jar of yogurt.  Let it drain over a bowl for 2-4 hours (depending on the desired thickness).
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Scrape the thickened yogurt into a bowl and whisk until smooth.  The longer you let it drain, the thicker it is.  I forgot once and it drained for over a day.  You could stick a fork in it and it would stand up.  haha!

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Filed under Appetizer, Breakfast, Recipes, Side Dish

Apricot Buttermilk Scones

I love fresh baked scones.  They are wonderfully simple to make and in under an hour you can have fragrant, moist, flavorful triangles of yummyness.  Last time my friend Cristy stopped by I figured it was a great opportunity to whip some up.  Scone recipes tend to use two different things to moisten the dough.  Sour cream or buttermilk.  As sour cream was conspicuously absent from my fridge I decided to use my favorite buttermilk recipe.
If you don’t have any buttermilk, which I usually don’t, there are two ways to make it.  First, you can put 1 tbs of white vinegar in a measuring cup and add enough milk to make 1 cup.  Leave it on the counter for 5 minutes.  Walla!  Buttermilk.  The second way is to buy Powdered Buttermilk.  You add this to the dry ingredients and then add water with the wet ingredients.  The powdered buttermilk can be stored in the fridge for a number of months which is great.  I found mine with the powdered milk at my local grocery store.
This recipe calls for cake flour as well as all-purpose.  Cake flour is a lower protein flour which gives the scones a lighter feel.  All-purpose flour can be substituted.  However, it will make a slightly more dense scone.
Apricot Buttermilk Scones
Adapted from the scone recipe in The Great Book of Chocolate
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
8 tbs unsalted butter, cold
1 cup dried apricots
1/2 cup buttermilk
Turbinado sugar for topping (optional)
1.  Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2.  Mix the flours, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt with a whisk.
3.  Cut the butter into cubes and add to the flour mixture.
 Apricot Scone
4.  Cut the butter (using fingers, pastry cutter or food processor) into the flour mixture until it looks like cornmeal.
5.  Cut the apricots into quarters.
6.  Stir in the apricots and buttermilk until just wet and sticky.
7.  Turn the dough out onto the floured work surface and pat into a 1-inch thick circle.  Cut into 8 wedges.
Apricot Scone
8.  Place on prepared baking sheet 1 inch apart.  Sprinkle with sugar.
8.  Bake until firm and golden brown.  15-20 minutes.
Apricot Scone

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Canned Biscuit Doughnut Recipe

I have been wanting to try making donuts (doughnuts?) for a while now but have been avoiding it due to the time involved mixing, kneading, rising, kneading, rising again, rolling, cutting and frying the things.  I knew that by the time I was done breakfast would be long since past unless I got up way to early.  Thus when I saw these on a few different food blogs I was intrigued. These donuts are as simple as:

1.  Open tube of biscuits. (I used a tube of 10 store brand buttermilk type)
2.  Cut hole out of center. (I used the bottom of a pastry tip)

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 3.  Fry in 350 degree oil until golden brown, flipping halfway through.

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4.  Stop to admire the beautiful roses your hubby bought you ‘just because’.

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5.  Coat in cinnamon and sugar or powdered sugar.

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 6.  Devour all 10 (including the cute donut holes) in less than a day.*

Easy peasy.

*In my defense, Steve ate half of them.

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