2-3-14

I have been wanting to make oatmeal scones for a while now. For no particular reason, really. But I have had a bag of oatmeal flour sitting on my baking shelf for longer than I’d care to say. Today, I finally managed to do something with it.

Penelope was overjoyed about the falling snow. The snow is lovely, but I was feeling more inclined to stay inside and have a cup of tea.

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And so, after our snowy walk, in to the kitchen I went. Scones are so easy to make, and no fear if you don’t have oatmeal flour. You can make your own simply by putting raw oats in a food processor and grinding until very fine!

Oatmeal Scones

1 cup oatmeal flour

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 stick butter, very very cold

1 cup buttermilk, plus more for brushing

turbinado sugar, for sprinkling

handful raw oats, for sprinkling

Whisk all of the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Cut the butter into small pieces and working quickly, incorporate until the mixtures resembles wet sand. Don’t let the butter get warm! The key to good scones is in leaving  nice bits of butter scattered throughout the dough. You can do this step with your fingers, a couple of knives, or a food processor. Freezing the butter and grating it on a large cheese grater is also a good trick.

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Handling the dough as little as possible, transfer the mixture to a work surface and shape into a disc. Flatten until the dough is about 1 1/2” thick. Cut into 8 wedges. Transfer to a baking sheet and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

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Preheat the oven to 400°. Brush the scones with buttermilk and sprinkle with turbinado sugar and a few whole oats. Bake until lightly golden, about 25 minutes.

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Serve warm with butter and tea.

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1-29-14

My Super Bowl shots in today’s New York Times Dining Section!

12-17-13

It’s 25º out, there’s snow on the ground and salt all over the roads. I guess winter is officially here.

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And what better way to warm up than with some warm Bread and Butter Pudding?! As most of you already know, I am rather obsessed with all things custard. So when we got to the pastry section in culinary school, way back when, I was pretty ecstatic. Creme anglaise and creme brulee, so many lovely things. Our pastry chef was named Chef Simm. He was a grumpy, inappropriate Englishman who lived on a boat. I loved him. I imagine this is the kind of thing he’d eat for breakfast. On his boat, outside of New York City (seriously.) 

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Bread and Butter Pudding, adapted from Chef Simm

1/3 cup raisins

1/4 cup rum (aye, matey)

4 cups milk

1 vanilla bean, scraped

1 cup sugar

4 eggs

8 egg yolks

1 baguette, thinly sliced

4 Tbsp butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 330º. Place the raisins and rum in a small bowl to plump.

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Meanwhile, heat the milk, vanilla seeds, vanilla bean and 1/2 cup sugar in a saucepan over medium heat. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs with the remaining 1/2 cup sugar.

When the milk is just below a simmer, temper the eggs. Whisking constantly, slowly pour about 1/2 of the milk mixture into the eggs. Off the heat, pour the egg mixture into the saucepan and return to the stove. Whisk constantly and cook until heated through, another couple minutes. Remove from heat and pour through a fine mesh sieve.

In a baking dish, layer the baguette slices, buttering each slice with melted butter on each side as you go. Sprinkle with some of the soaked raisins and sprinkle with a bit of rum. Repeat layers until the baking dish is full. Pour the custard on top (bake any leftover custard in a small dish at the same time.) Place the pudding in a water bath so that warm water comes about 1/2 way up the sides of the dish. Bake until just set, about 1 hour. The pudding will remain slightly loose and jiggly in the center.

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So warm and comforting. And festive, too. Happy Holidays, everyone!

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12-4-13

New York Times- round two! Fried Chicken and Sweet Potato Pecan Salad

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11-26-13

My first image in the New York Times!

11-18-13

Gather Journal, ’Cocoon’, Fall/Winter 2013 Issue out now!

11-12-13

I’ve been so busy. Busy is great! But it leaves little time for the important things like blog posts for Nicole, Tori and Chelsea to read. In my defense, I have been all over the place. New York, Hilton Head, Maine, Springfield, New York again. It’s been fun! But I haven’t been in one place for more than a few nights in a row.

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I am always happy to come back to Boston. It’s fall in New England. And my birthday month. And to me, that means cranberry season. I LOVE that Boston is near the cape. Not only does that mean summer days are spent in the sand and salt water, but cranberries are local- straight from the bog, little branches and everything, it’s all a part of the mix.

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I adore cranberries. And they are so good for you, too. It’s a shame most people only buy canned cranberry sauce and super sugary cranberry juice. So here is a little early Thanksgiving recipe for homemade cranberry sauce. But I make it whenever! It’s awesome with a little cottage cheese or fresh ricotta for breakfast, dessert, whatever. and of course, with some roast turkey or chicken.

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Cranberry Sauce

1 bag cranberries

1/2 cup apple cider

1 orange, zest and juice

1/2 heaping cup demerrara sugar (or to taste…maybe a bit more, but I like mine tart)

1/4 teaspoon cloves

Place all of the ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer until the cranberries have burst and the sauce has thickened, about 15 minutes. Cool. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

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10-31-13

Great article about young professionals on Thought Catalog! Yours truly is #5

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10-4-13

I was loath to say goodbye to summer. Now that I am in Boston I absolutely adore summer again. No more sweating in 100 degree heat in the subway (ok, there was a bit of that.) But summer means beach and sun and sand! Oysters and cookouts and chilled wine! I never want it to end!

But fall arrived and finally, I’ve started to warm up to it. I actually love the change of seasons. The crisp air and colored leaves make me happy. As do pumpkins, apple picking and cider. And Penelope and I take lovely walks- in New York and Boston! Much like her mama, she now has a paw in both cities.

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But the nights are chilly and make me want to snuggle in and get warm and cozy. And there is nothing warmer or cozier, in my mind, than apple crisp. Or any kind of baked apple, really. So much to love! And apple season is here.

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I love baking. I also love just throwing something in the oven to have a little warm treat in the evening. So this is a lazy man’s (lady’s) apple crisp. A bit lighter on the sugar and butter than most, but still a real treat. 

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Apple Crisp

makes 2 (generous) individual crisps

3 apples (I used Jonathan)

2 Tbsp sugar

1/2 tsp cinnamon

2 Tbsp melted butter

1/4 cup flour

3 Tbsp brown sugar

1/3 cup pecans, chopped

Preheat the oven to 350.

Core and chop the apples. I left the skin on- why not? We’re being lazy. Toss with the sugar and cinnamon. Divide between two individual baking dishes. If you don’t have anything that’s an appropriate size, divi-up into smaller ramekins or bake one crisp in a small baking dish or pie plate.

Mix the remaining ingredients. Scatter over the apples. Bake until the apples are juicy and tender, about 45 minutes.

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Serve warm. A bit of vanilla ice cream wouldn’t hurt either.

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10-3-13

It’s been forever!! Work has been keeping me completely preoccupied- which is great. But between work and travel I’ve had precious little time for anything else. Things have slowed a bit this week, so I’m finally back.

This moment of quiet just happens to coincide with the most beautiful days of Indian summer that we’ve been having. I also happened to have key limes in the fridge with no designated use, so I decided to make Key Lime Sorbet. A last little icy ode to summer.

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Key limes are great. They’re little and cute and have a slightly different tang to them than regular limes. But certainly, you could swap in regular limes in here, no problem. The little ones also take some patience- lots of squeezing happening here.

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Key Lime Sorbet

1 cup sugar (or a little more if you wish)

4 cups water, divided

2/3 cup fresh key lime juice (about 2 bags, squeezed and strained)

Place the sugar and 1 cup of water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and stir until the sugar has melted. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool completely.

Add the key lime juice and remaining water. Cover and place in the refrigerator. Chill overnight.

Freeze in your ice cream machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions. 

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