The above is a photo from the magnificent Rocky Mountains. My boyfriend and I climbed one of its many peaks, and once I reached the top I made sure to promptly drop both my phone and my inhaler. Luckily my boyfriend is not a hot stack of mess and was able to retrieve both items from mother nature’s grasp. The photo is meant to make you jealous I suppose, but really just makes me crave some alone time atop a peak in Colorado or somewhere similar.
Guys, I have no idea what is happening. I don’t want to be one of those “boo-hoo-people-suck-and-the-world- would-be-better-if-I-toured-with-The Swell Season (as a fledgling pretty poor excuse for a ukulele player, of course)-and-never-had-to-deal-with-anything-or-anyone-else-again” people. But I’m really starting to feel like the crazy is all around me, and not of me, if that makes sense. People are just being so…mean. And I can mayyyybe deal with one tool screwing with my chi, but one’s my limit, and just barely. I don’t like to speak ill of people, and I don’t like for others to speak ill of me. I don’t like being spoken about period, as a matter of fact. Think about it, people I know in real life: even when you ask me about this blog, don’t I act super weird and completely shut down because I have no idea what to say about myself? I’m a strange bird, I know.
The past few weeks have been so jam-packed with random happenings, both great and awful, so much so that I haven’t even really had the time to process all of the great or awful. In fact I kind of feel like maybe the awful is preventing me from processing the great. That’s why I basically forced myself to spend some time in the kitchen alone doing what I love. And with this, a scone is born. Well, eight scones, to be exact.
Pear Chai Scones (makes 8 lumpy, maybe ugly but ridiculously yummy scones)
2 cups of all-purpose flour
1/4 cup of granulated sugar
1 tablespoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 teaspoon of ginger
1/2 teaspoon of ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon of ground cardamom
Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon of salt
6 tablespoons of cold butter, cut into small pieces
2 large pears, chopped into chunks or small pieces, depending on how chunky you like your scones (me likey chunky scones)
1 large egg
1 teaspoon maple syrup or vanilla extract
1/2 cup of buttermilk
Preheat your oven to 350ºF. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, sugar baking powder, spices, pepper and salt. Now, bring in your butter, which should look a little something like this:
If you can’t see, the 6 tablespoons are basically chopped up into tiny pieces. I chopped this up and refrigerated the butter until I needed it. For the tenderest scones possible, you want cold butter that hasn’t been worked over a ton, so chop and chill, people. Chop and chill (can I get that on a t-shirt actually?).
Cut your cold butter into the flour mixture with your hands or a pastry blender and work just until the mixture begins to look like a coarse meal.
Gently fold in your pears and set aside.
Now, in a separate bowl, whisk together your egg, maple or vanilla and buttermilk. Gently pour this wet mixture over your pear/flour mixture, and work just until all of the flour has been moistened.
So yes, there is mess involved. Turn this dough out onto a floured surface, and carefully work into a 1-inch high disk. Please resist the urge to add more flour to this thing– trust, it will only dry your scones out. With a knife dipped in flour, cut eight equally-sized wedges. Transfer scones to a baking sheet, sprinkle tops with additional sugar if desired, and bake f0r 20-25 minutes, until the tops are lightly browned.
Now I know these things don’t look pretty. But, I feel like scones rarely do look pretty, right? Maybe? Well, whatever. I opted to not top these with additional sugar and was SUPER happy with the result. They’re not overly sweet, but they are tender and crumbly, with the chunks of pear adding a very pleasant texture.
Ok, I totally took a bite out of the one above, and you can’t even tell, right? That’s how ugly and misshapen these are. But seriously, the second you bite into one, you will not care. And if you do care, well…please don’t tell me. At least not in person. You know how weird I get.