Tag Archives: peach

Scones and biscuits

Since Mike and I became “empty nesters” we’ve almost stopped making biscuits. The two of us couldn’t (and shouldn’t!) eat a whole batch ourselves, so whenever I made them a large number went to the chickens. However, I recently discovered that you can freeze uncooked biscuits and scones. I’m not sure why I didn’t realize you could do this, but then again, until recently there was no such thing as “too many biscuits.”

Inspired by our son Aric – a big fan of biscuits and an excellent cook – I have been making drop biscuits and scones, and then freezing them in zip lock bags. This way Mike and I can pop just a few in our convection toaster oven whenever we want. Drop biscuits and scones are super easy to make, and they seem to cook better in the toaster oven than regular rolled-out biscuits.

Cinnamon-Almond Drop Scones Cinnamon-almond scone

Makes 6 – 8 scones. These can be frozen (uncooked) and cooked as needed in a convection toaster oven. I freeze them on a small tray and then store them in zip lock freezer bags.

  • 1.5 cups unbleached white flour
  • .25 cup almond meal (can substitute flour)
  • 2.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • .5 tsp baking soda
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • .5 cup cinnamon chips
  • 1 egg
  • .3 to .5 cup sour milk*
  • 1 egg
  • .5 tsp almond extract
  • .25 cup melted butter (half a stick)
  • flaked or chopped almonds for topping
  • 2 Tbsp sugar for topping
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon for topping

*If you don’t happen to have sour milk just sitting around, you can add a tsp of lemon juice or vinegar to your milk to “sour” it. Let it sit for a few minutes  to clabber.

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl (including cinnamon chips), combine  sour milk, egg, and butter in another bowl and beat up, then add the wet to the dry ingredients. Don’t stir or beat too much – you do not want to develop the gluten in a quick bread like biscuits. I use a fork and it only takes about 5 seconds.

Drop onto a greased cookie sheet. Carefully place almonds on top, then sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Bake at 425 F for 10-12 minutes.

Peach-ginger scones: Use the same recipe above, except leave out the cinnamon chips and ground cinnamon. Add 2 Tbsp minced candied ginger and 1/2 cup chopped fresh peach.

Cheddar & herb drop biscuits: Adapt recipe above by leaving out the almonds, cinnamon, and sweet stuff, and instead add 1/4 cup cornmeal, 2 tsp crushed dried herbs, 1 tsp minced garlic, and 1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese.

More scone and biscuit variations

  • Lemon & poppy seed
  • Green chili & bacon
  • Coconut, date, & sesame
  • Orange & walnut
  • “Everything” biscuit
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Millions of peaches

Millions of peaches peaches for me
Millions of peaches peaches for free
If I had my little way I’d eat peaches everyday

We’ve been getting some excellent peaches from the tree by the back door for about a month. This is surprising because we had two late frosts, but very few dropped off during the spring and summer, and the

Peaches: fresh, canned, chutney, and rice pudding

Peaches: fresh, canned, chutney, and in rice pudding

normal gangs of squirrels have not been snacking on them. The limbs have been really loaded down, so we’ve been eating, drying, canning, and cooking all sorts of peachy treats. Eating peaches from this tree makes me especially happy, as the tree is a “volunteer” that sprouted in our compost about 8 years ago.

The peach slices dried in the dehydrator are an excellent snack and great for backpacking. Mike doesn’t even peel them, he just slices them and dips them in water with a little lemon juice added. I’ve made peach salsa and chutney to freeze in ziplock bags (see below). Yesterday we had peach crisp for breakfast and today I made peach rice pudding (see below) for dessert.

You’ll notice that my recipe for peach salsa and peach chutney are very similar. I love making chutney because you can just combine all sorts of vegetables and fruits. Too many green tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, and peaches? Make chutney! (My grandmother would have called this chow-chow.) And the peach salsa can be eaten as-is or combined with a regular tomato salsa fresca. I think it is especially good on shrimp or fish tacos, or served with pork fajitas.

  • Peach salsa
    • 6 cups diced peaches (unpeeled)
    • 2 – 4 minced serrano peppers (seeds included)
    • 1 minced whole lime (or two key limes)
    • 4 minced garlic cloves
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp whole cumin seed
    • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 1/2 tsp chipotle sauce (optional)

Cook in a saucepan over low flame for about 30 minutes.

  • Peach chutney
    • 4 cups diced peaches (unpeeled)
    • 2 – 4 minced serrano peppers (seeds included)
    • 4 minced garlic cloves
    • 1 minced whole lime (or two key limes)
    • any other fruits or vegetables you need to use up (today I added a peeled cucumber, mango, an onion, and a few raisins and craisins)
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp whole cumin seed
    • 2 tsp whole cardamon pods
    • 1 tsp whole mustard seed
    • 1/2 tsp whole cloves or 1/4 tsp ground
    • 1 tsp ground tumeric
    • 2 bay leaves
    • 1 tsp diced or grated fresh ginger
    • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
    • 1/2 cup sugar

Cook in a saucepan over low flame for about 45 minutes. Remove the bay leaves and the cardamon pods (if you’re picky…).

  • Peach rice pudding
    • 1 1/2 cups rice (I used Thai jasmine, but any short-grained rice would be good)
    • 2 1/2 cups water
    • 1 cup whole milk
    • 1/2 cup half-n-half (light cream)
    • 1 tsp vanilla
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1/2 cup sugar (white, brown, or a mix)
    • 2 cups diced peaches, with skin
    • 4 cardamon pods
    • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Cook in a covered pod over a very low flame. Depending upon the type of rice you use you may need to add more milk.

The delicata squash and contender bush beans are up and growing. I think we’ll get a good picking off the beans, but I doubt the squash will make before the first frost. You never know though, we’ve had some strange weather lately (rainy and unseasonably mild for August), and maybe it won’t freeze until December. I planted some beets, pak choi, and lettuce yesterday. I just broadcast the seeds, and will then transplant the seedlings after they come up. I need to plant more beets, carrots, cilantro, and spinach as soon as possible, before the weather reverts to its normal hot and dry mode.

Hopi Red amaranth

My Hopi red dye amaranth is starting to form seeds heads, and the cosmos is starting to bloom. I’ve been harvesting the sunflower seed heads for the chickens and toss them a dozen every day. These aren’t the large sunflower seeds that you buy for snacking, these are naturalized sunflowers that reseed all over. The birds and the chickens love them. (Speaking of birds, we’ve got a nest of Mississippi kites in the neighborhood and you can hear their calls/screams throughout the day. It’s kinda weird to see them here in the middle of town. What next – hawks and turkey vultures? )

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