Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Raspberry Scones (I'm back)

I don't know, guys. I'm still heartbroken, and it's still hard, and I'm uncovering new layers of my grief like a flaky pastry that peels apart and gets crumbs all over my lap.

I needed something solid.

So, this morning, I made scones.

I'm back in Los Angeles after three weeks of love and wine and hugs and tears in the frozen tundra, and this city's greatest gift to me (and our truly depleted reservoirs) is the rain. I flew into a really beautiful LA sunset and since then, we've been nestled under the most delicious cloud-cover and steady downpours. I mean, did the wall of an El Pollo Loco franchise collapse from rain? Did that poor, scarved man have to climb out of and abandon his Smart Car in the flooded Sepulveda basin? Did people build houses on... I don't know, mud cliffs? Sure. LA doesn't do well with drainage, and that is apparent. BUT if you stay inside and your house isn't on a mud cliff, it's the best. I'm motherfucking cozy. I'm wearing the kind of slippers your grandma wore -- you know, satiny, like ballet flats but with a cushy sole and essentially manufactured for elderly feet. I crawl into my bed earlier and earlier in the evening just because I know it will be warmer in there. And I'm listening to Joni Mitchell on vinyl and deeply swaying in a way that I can only freely do when my roommates are gone. Are you picturing it? With the slippers, too? Sorry.

Gloomy weather and melancholy make a good team, like people who pair their wines and cheeses, or couples who start to look like each other. So I'm grateful for this rain. I can be pretty "right place, right time" about my sadness and even that tinge of homesickness that finds its way in even though I was home for three weeks. It's never enough time! So, eat a scone. Wishing you coziness with something solid.

Raspberry Scones

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup white sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon lemon juice or zest 
1 stick cold, cubed butter
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 cup frozen raspberries
excess flour for flouring

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and grease a baking sheet.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and lemon product.
Add the cubed butter and, using a pastry blender, mash that business up until you have pea-sized butter nubs. I hate this part of making scones because what is this consistency? Very frustrating. Power through.
Add the heavy whipping cream and mush with your hands that you washed before you even started, especially because of the norovirus.
Once the mixture is mostly combined (there will still be some loose flour), dump it onto your counter and knead it together. Don't overwork it, just be naturally flawless.
Try your best to shape the dough into a rectangle, about 8 1/2 x 11, with the long side facing you.
Starting about 1/3 of the way down from the top of your rectangle, line frozen raspberries along the rest of the dough.
Fold the non-berry portion onto the berry portion, and continue folding until you have a long dough tube (sensual) at the bottom of your counter.
Cut this tube into four squares, and then triangulate the squares.
Refrigerate the 8 triangle scones for about 10 minutes, then...
Bake the scones for about 20 minutes.
Cool and enjoy!

Using frozen berries that are folded into the dough helps contain what could otherwise be a berry shitshow. The tartness of the raspberries balances out the dense, biscuit-y scone and I could eat 20 million of these. But then what would happen to my bikini body?!

Happy baking!