Saturday, May 6, 2017

Coffee and Tea with Chocolate Chip Scones

Good day to all you lovely creatures.....

"I think that I shall never budge
From this cake of frosted fudge;
O, chocolate taste I love so true,
Nothing else will ever do."

poetry & illustration by Susan Wheeler/Holly Pond Hill
Isn't that a delightful poem? I cherish this birthday card for several reasons. One - my dear friend, Janie, gave it to me some years ago - Two - I absolutely adore the watercolor illustration by Susan Wheeler - Three - I love all things chocolate! - Four - I love quaint and cozy, fairy-tale forest settings where woodland creatures chitter and chat with each other (speaking in English, I mean!), cook delicious meals of fresh food garnered and gathered amidst their surroundings, and experience life with their families and foes - both vicious and, in the end, victorious.

Perhaps some of you have never had the penchant to read animal stories where pint-sized creatures - and larger - conversed in a language you understood? It's been some years now since I've read any, but I have four books in my front porch library from the Redwall series by Brian Jacques. They are simply fantastic reading! A lot of medieval adventure, and a lot of misadventure and sorrow, unfortunately, but that is what life brings us, doesn't it? Even to the creatures that our LORD created. And you can't have a great story without conflict. 

One thing I distinctly love remembering about these books were the delicious meals the animals prepared! The descriptions of their meal preparations made me hunger for a bite! Oh, how I wanted to join these delightful creatures in their celebrations and family gatherings! Food was an integral part of these stories. Right now I can't remember if there was any chocolate involved. Hmmm.....guess I will have to read these books again!

But I digress, and know that you are wondering where the scones are, yes? They're baking in the oven, don't you know??? 😃 I had to preface this post with that beautiful birthday card, and then I led you down the path, through the forest, up the hill, and now down in the valley (actually, my kitchen) to where we can see something delicious. 
Can you smell the coffee brewing? 

Since we're back on track, let's find out how these famous scones materialize. I say they are famous, because anyone who has eaten one has loved them and wanted more!

I will give you two options - the healthier version which I made here - and the regular version I started with many years ago - which was taken from a Country Living magazine. You can choose which way you want to go. The regular version of ingredients that I substituted for is in parentheses.

Chocolate Chip Scones 

2 cups whole wheat pastry flour  [all-purpose flour]
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. Himalayan Pink Sea Salt  [regular salt]
3 tbsp. organic cane sugar or erythritol  [white sugar]
1/2 cup coconut oil (solid) [Crisco shortening]
1/2 cup milk or light cream
1 large egg
1 tsp. real vanilla extract
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 425°F.  Combine flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar.  Cut in coconut oil till mixture resembles small crumbs. Add chocolate chips. Mix together milk (or cream), egg, and vanilla.  Add to dry ingredients. Mix with fork until forms soft dough. Don't over mix. Knead on lightly floured surface five or six times. Form into a ball. Roll into seven-inch round. Cut into eight wedges.  Pierce tops with tines of fork.  Place on greased cookie sheet or use parchment paper on cookie sheet and don’t grease (if using nonstick, don’t grease) and bake 13-16 minutes or until light golden brown.  Serve warm.

Whole wheat pastry flour will look slightly darker than regular all-purpose flour, as you can see in this photo after I have cut in the coconut oil with my pastry blender. You can see the jar of coconut oil in the photo along with the mini chips I used. Please note - I always use more than 1/2 cup of chocolate chips! Probably about 3/4 cup, as you can see below! I made a well in the middle for the cream and egg mixture as it's easier to mix together with a fork that way.

Only knead a few times! Too much kneading and you won't get a tender flaky scone. The coconut oil makes a better tasting and lighter texture scone than the shortening. I didn't measure the width of the circle of dough. It was a little wider than seven inches, so they came out a little thinner than they should but still tasted wonderful! But it should be approximately seven inches across. 
You don't want pancakes! 

Sometimes I want to make tiny scones so they go a little further (with one batch). After forming the ball of dough, cut it in half, roll out each half (smaller than seven inches this time) and cut each in eight wedges. Keep an eye on the time in the oven as they will bake a little quicker. 
Now you'll have 16 appetizer size scones to share!

 And here they are all baked!

These scones made with the whole wheat pastry flour were light and fluffy in texture and were a perfect partner alongside a breakfast of scrambled eggs and bacon this morning! Coffee is my usual breakfast beverage, but after photographing the scones, I thought that the tea lovers should have fair share in this, as well! I happen to love both beverages. 
Since I made a cup of Earl Grey for the photo shoot, I drank that, too!

Coffee? or Tea? What will it be?

Now you are all ready for the weekend with a batch of freshly made flaky chocolate chip scones! I suspect that a double batch is in order as they go fast. When I make more than one batch at a time, I don't double the ingredients - I make the batches separately in different bowls - just to make sure they come out right. That's the way I prefer to do it.

Don't forget that Mother's Day is coming up soon! My Etsy Shop (here) is having a sale right now through Mother's Day, May 14th. 15% off any purchase. Please remember to use the coupon code MUMSDAY15.
I hope to share another special recipe by the end of next week - on Friday. Stay tuned for a scrumptious, delicious, red and white dessert especially for Mother's Day celebrations. 

Until next time....
"I have set the LORD always before me: 
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: 
my flesh also shall rest in hope.
For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; 
neither wilt thou permit thine Holy One to see corruption.
Thou wilt show me the path of life: 
in thy presence is fulness of joy;
at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore."
Psalm 16:8-11

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