National Hot Tea Month (January)
Warm Up this Winter
A few weeks ago, I was chilling in a hot tub after swimming. A tourist and I engaged in a conversation. When I shared my recent experiences at tearooms in Canada, her interest soared. She said, “My friend wants to open up a tearoom on the South Shore. What do you think?” There was a pregnant pause as I thought, “Gee, she stole my idea!” But as time passed, I arrived at the conclusion a tearoom may attract tourists in the winter for hot tea and summer for iced tea—but during off season a tearoom would be like an empty tea cup or two. And I told her that, speaking from experience and my heart, well, sort of. But just because a tearoom may not be in the cards for the South Shore doesn’t mean enjoying vanilla petite scones at Starbucks or munching on homemade scones aren’t something to savor. So, since I bought fresh berries and walnuts, they were used in this tearoom chat-inspired recipe. It’s truly easy to make, will please folks of all ages—and gender (not just fussy women) because they are countrified and well, real food.
Cranberry-Walnut Winter Scones
¼ cup granulated white sugar
1 cup low-fat buttermilk, premium brand
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 stick European style butter, cold, cubed
½ cup walnuts, chopped
3/4 cup dried cranberries
2 teaspoons orange or lemon rind (optional)
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted (for sprinkling tops after removed from oven)
In a bowl combine flour and sugar. Add buttermilk and vanilla. Fold in butter, nuts, and berries. On a floured cutting board mold the dough into a circle. Place on a plate and put into the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. Remove and slice the circle like a pizza into 6 triangles. Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake scones in a 425 degree oven for 18 minutes or until bottom of scones are light brown. Do not overbake. Dust with sugar. Makes 6 medium scones or 12 mini sized ones.
Using cake flour makes these scones have a light texture. The fresh berries is a naturally sweet delight as we near wintertime. The powdered sugar is a nice touch and most of you hope it’s foreshadow for snowy days ahead. These scones with nature’s berries and nuts are a sweet pleasure to eat and share any time, day or night. Pair it with a cup of cocoa topped with whipped cream and a candy cane or a cup of hot ginger, peppermint, pumpkin spice or chamomile tea. Because they are rustic mountain-style food and not a perfect and dainty cookie cutter shape, you’ll enjoy them all the more whether you’re a local or tourist.
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