Friday, November 6, 2009

Food: November 2009: A Brunch For Eight, Part 2

In Charlotte, Vermont there is an Old Brick Store that serves the kind of scones that would make you check into a twelve-step program. In high school I could down three of them in a sitting. They were warm and moist and had a sweet outside crust - perfection- and never overly-crumbly like the British counterpart can be. The baker there fifteen years ago shared their scone recipe with me but made me swear a vow of silence that I keep to this day.
I was inspired to begin messing with the recipe one day when we were preparing for a brunch where we had invited a family with an egg allergy.  Between the muffins and the fritatta, I realized that we were throwing an egg-fest and it was time to create a "festivus for the rest of us." The result was rather delicious, and approved by allergy and non-allergy eaters alike, but tastes best warm and fresh and should be eaten that day.  These scones are great for kids with some food allergies as they are egg and dairy free, but please check with the parents of these children to ensure that all the ingredients are approved.
So, back to our brunch. Now that the blueberry muffins are in the oven, and I have started to clean up the kitchen, get the kids dressed and myself... well, at least with teeth brushed, I turn to the scones before everyone will arrive.  Remember that most butter based dough require that you keep the ingredients as cold as possible and work with it as quickly as possible, minimizing your hand contact with the dough so that you will not overheat it.

Egg-Free/ Dairy Free Scones
2 cups, 2 tablespoon all purpose flour
1/2 heaping teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
sprinkling raw sugar for top of scones
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
5 tablespoon earth or smart balance - chilled in freezer for five minutes
3/4 cup soy milk, original, plus 2 tablespoon for painting top of scones

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Place all the dry ingredients (with 2 cups of flour) into a food processor with a steel blade and pulse until blended.  Add the tablespoons of chilled earth balance (spread around the flour mixture) and pulse about 5 times.  Then through the tube of the processor, slowly pour milk as the machine is on and let stay on until a large ball of dough starts to form.  Dump the dough ball onto of a counter sprinkled with the 2 tablespoons of flour.  Work quickly to form a ball and then flatten into a pizza like disc, but thicker - roughly 1/2 inch thick.  Cut the disc into six thick "slices" or 8 smaller slices.  Using a pastry brush, brush tops lightly with soy milk and sprinkle with raw sugar. Place on a greased baking pan and bake for roughly 15-17 minutes or until the dough has risen and started to get golden.

With all the baked good ready, place them out on a counter or table with butter and jams and coffee and your guests can start with these items as they are arriving, and while you make the final pieces of the brunch, frittata and yogurt with "fairy dust" and raspberries.  

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