22 May 2009
It would appear that one of the main problems of being me is the fact that I am pretty much always hungry. I eat, and then I do whatever it is that I'm supposed to be doing, and then my belly starts whining. Take last night, for example. I ate dinner, went to bed at a reasonable hour, and then woke up two hours later only to find that I was a seriously problematic combination of discombobulated and ravenous. Ravenous! I thought of my mother's perennial advice: "Just go to sleep."
Fat chance (sorry, Mom). Part of the problem is that I'm wired like my dad, who, once his brain gets going, cannot even pretend to sleep, and thinks a lot about the sleep that he's losing because he can't sleep, amongst other things. I can't even remember what I was so worked up about. But worked up I was, and hungry to boot. Never a good combination. So this morning, getting up and realizing that there wasn't too much in the breakfast mode, I decided, foolishly, to forgo breakfast, and settle for coffee instead.
Whoops. Eleven o'clock rolls around, and what am I? Hungry, and cranky, and tired. Brilliant. Luckily, I managed to pull myself out of the slump enough to make scones. Easy, and quick. However, they didn't turn out as nice as I would have liked, which is due to the fact that I didn't add enough liquid to the dough before trying to knead them as little as possible. Which of course, led to a tougher scone, thanks to the by then more necessary kneading that they had to go through. Sorry scones. At least they turned out tasty, which is really what I needed this morning--something to uplift, and revive. Scones? Definitely my saving grace for the day.
Currant and Fennel Scones, adapted from Orangette and Delicious Days
1 1/2 cups + 1 tablespoon four
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 1/2 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
4 tablespoons cold butter
1/4 cup dried currants
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
4-5 tablespoons milk, cream, or half-and-half
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt with a wooden spoon. Mix in fruit and fennel seeds.
3. Cut in butter with a pastry blender, or with two knives, until the butter looks like small peas.
4. Add milk until dough just comes together, and dump out onto a work surface. Knead 3-4 times, and pat into a round about 1 1/4-inch thick. Cut out rounds with a biscuit cutter, taking care not to twist it on the lift. Re-knead and cut out more scones as necessary.
5. Bake 13-15 minutes, until golden brown, and let cool on a wire rack.