Archive for the 'breakfast' Category

Meyer Lemon Scones with Lemon Drizzle + Lemon Curd

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Sorry I’ve been neglectful of you guys this week – I’ve been off meeting and eating from Toronto to Richmond. Today I’m still digesting noodles and soup dumplings and what feels like half a dozen pineapple buns from the Lido, but today I have a baby shower to bake for.

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I’ve been planning a Meyer lemon tart, but since tart pan rings and bottoms have a way of losing each other in the basement, Meyer lemon scones it is. And curd, just to up the ante. Meyer lemons are here – they’re bigger (or sometimes, smaller) and smoother, with a slightly orange tinge, which can be credited to their breeding; a Meyer lemon is a regular lemon crossed with a mandarin orange.

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Which makes them milder than a regular lemon – more floral, less acidic, with less pucker power. Sometimes, particularly when I make something tart, like curd, I like to combine the two – Meyer and regular lemons – to get the best of both worlds.

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This online shower is for our friend Jan, who is due to have a baby boy any second now – and since we can’t all live in the same city, we had to do something virtually, as we food bloggers are wont to do. On the upside, I can stay in my PJs and keep this entire batch to myself.

(Update: I packaged them up and brought them to the hospital for the nurses – we’ve been spending a lot of time these past few weeks there with Mike’s mom – and when I got home found them still sitting on the back seat of the car. Facepalm.)

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For a shower (or even a brunch), cut these small and dainty – two or three bites – which means no one has to commit to an enormous scone, and can always have seconds. Besides, maximizing surface area means more crunchy, crispy bits.

Meyer Lemon Scones with Lemon Drizzle

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
grated zest and juice of 2 Meyer lemons, divided
1/2 cup butter, cut into chunks
3/4 cup (ish) milk or cream
1 large egg

extra milk or cream, for brushing (optional)
coarse or turbinado sugar, for sprinkling (optional)
1/2 cup (ish) icing sugar

Preheat the oven to 425F.

In a large bowl or the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add the lemon zest and butter and pulse or blend with a pastry cutter, fork or your fingers until the mixture is crumbly.

Squeeze the juice of one of the lemons into a measuring cup and add enough milk to make 3/4 cup. Add the egg and stir with a fork.

Add to the dry ingredients and stir with a spatula until the dough comes together. Gather it into a ball and pat it out into a square or rectangle about an inch thick on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cut into squares or rounds, gathering up any scraps and rerolling them gently (if you have any).

If you cut them, pull the scones apart so that there’s space for the heat to move around them. If you like, brush the tops with a little cream and/or sprinkle with coarse sugar. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until golden.

Meanwhile, whisk together the juice of the remaining lemon with the icing sugar, adding a little more if necessary (this will depend on the juiciness of the lemon), until you have a drizzling consistency. Drizzle over the warm scones using a fork.

Makes about 9 scones.

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This particular occasion seemed to call for lemon curd – a trio of lemon in one bite is never a bad thing – but these really don’t need it. In fact, I’ve been seeing lemon combined with chocolate on restaurant menus lately, which makes me think that these – especially with their mandarin orange heritage – would do just fine with some chopped white or dark chocolate thrown in.

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Once you’ve made it, lemon curd is about as simple as it gets – just remember not to leave the pot on the stove while you go check your email. (Burnt curd is not a thing. Trust me, I’ve tried.) Since Meyer lemons don’t have the same tartness as regular lemons, I like to top it up with regular lemon juice to add a little more pucker. Whisk on the stovetop until it thickens, then whisk in the butter, which will kickstart the cooling process. Easy. Eat with a spoon to ward off winter.

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Meyer Lemon Curd

6 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
zest of two Meyer lemons
1/2 cup Meyer and regular lemon juice
1/2 cup butter, cut into pieces

In a medium saucepan, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, lemon zest and juice. Set over medium heat and cook, stirring often (if not constantly) with a whisk, until the mixture comes to a boil and thickens. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter. Set aside to cool.

Makes about 2 cups.

Join the rest of the party! There’s plenty to eat.

Mardi from eat. live. travel. write made Blueberry Cheesecake Macarons
Heather from The Tasty Gardener made Cream Puffs w Caramel Cream + Chocolate Pretzel Top
Isabelle from Crumb: A Food Blog made Blackberry Meringue Bars
Jennifer from Seasons and Suppers made Baby Blueberry Beignets
Christina from Strawberries For Supper made Chocolate Madeleines
Jenny from The Brunette Baker made Wild Blueberry Buttermilk Muffins
Liliana from My Cookbook Addiction made Vanilla Mini Cupcakes
Carole from The Yum Yum Factor made Beet and Blue Cheese Canapes
Charmian from The Messy Baker made Piglet Muffins
Amy from Family Feedbag made Marmalade Poke Cake
Brittany from My Daily Randomness made a Caramel + Pumpkin Parfait
Meg from Sweet Twist of Blogging made an Apple Carrot Loaf
Aimee from Simple Bites made Roasted Turnip Hummus
Libby from Libby Roach Photography made Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies
Robyn from Planet Byn made Milk & Cookies Shooters

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February 16 2015 | bread and breakfast | 14 Comments »

Aimée’s Maple Walnut Granola

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I realize that one can only have so many formulas for granola, and at some point you settle into a regular combination you can mindlessly mix up and bake without much in the way of measuring.

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This is one such recipe. It comes from our friend Aimée, who has written her first cookbook, which focuses on seasonal eating from her urban homestead, and we’re celebrating with a virtual book launch of sorts, a bunch of us food writer friends choosing recipes to make and share this week as it makes its way into bookstores. (Also, I’m traveling a lot this week, and like to have a baggie of granola to take on the plane. I like to at least pretend to be that person as I devour as many packets of Biscoff cookies as I can coax out of the flight attendants.

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Since homemade granola is in constant rotation in our house, I chose hers to give a go; it’s very similar to my default granola, save for the applesauce and maple flakes (which, sadly, are not as readily available in Alberta). I had a jar of my sister’s crabapple sauce on my shelf, pink and sweet-tart, and so mixed some up, subbing sliced almonds for the sunflower seeds I had none of – that’s the great thing about granola, you can mix and match nuts and seeds and add whatever kind of dried fruit you like at the end.

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Cheers Aimée! Your book is beautiful. (And so is the granola!)

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Maple Walnut Granola

Homemade granola is a household staple that tastes better than anything you can buy and is much cheaper to make yourself. Ours is sweetened with maple syrup, while applesauce aids in forming those delicious clusters.

Noah and Mateo like their breakfast version plain, no raisins or other dried fruit, merci, although I shake in a few sunflower seeds and walnuts for texture. For an extra-special version of this granola, I add 1/4 cup (60 mL) organic maple flakes for a burst of sweetness. They’re available from online retailers and some Canadian grocers.

Makes 6 cups (1.5 L)

2/3 cup (150 mL) applesauce
1/2 cup (125 mL) pure maple syrup
3 tablespoons (45 mL) extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 teaspoon (4 mL) salt
1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) cinnamon
4 cups (1 L) old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup (250 mL) walnut pieces
1/2 cup (125 mL) unsalted sunflower seeds
1/4 cup (60 mL) organic maple flakes (optional)

1. Position oven racks in middle and top third of oven and preheat oven to 300°F (150°C). Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. In a large bowl, stir together applesauce, maple syrup, oil, salt and cinnamon. Add oats, walnuts, sunflower seeds and maple flakes, if using. Stir well to combine everything, taking care that the oats are fully coated.

3. Divide the oat mixture between the baking sheets and spread to an even layer. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown, rotating the baking sheets and giving the granola a stir halfway through the baking time.

4. Turn off oven. Dry granola for 15 minutes in the oven with the door slightly ajar, then cool completely on the counter.

Excerpted from Brown Eggs and Jam Jars, by Aimée Wimbush-Bourque (Penguin)

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February 11 2015 | breakfast and grains | 6 Comments »

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