Tuesday, August 12, 2014

White Chocolate, Cherry, Basil Scones and a Word on Cold Brewing

I tried cold brewing for the first time recently and now I totally get what all the hype is about. It's more than just cold coffee, to my surprise! Somehow that long and slow brewing method brings out all the little intricate flavours your favourite coffee has to to offer so I'd recommend that you don't skimp out on your beans. (Honestly I would have recommended that cold brew or no cold brew but I guess that's what makes me a coffee snob.) I've mentioned a local coffee shop here before, Sam James Coffee Bar and I have no problem mentioning them again. The best coffee and they do their own roasting which is something that seems to be picking up here in Toronto YAY! Support your local independents and grab some fresh beans.
This method is so simple it's stupid! It just takes some time overnight to steep.

All I did was grind my beans up for a few seconds to achieve a coarse grind. Then add those grinds to your handy dandy french press, using the same amount you would if you were making a hot cup o joe, fill her up with some cold water, put the top on and place in the fridge to sit over night. Make sure you don't press the plunger down as that will prevent it from steeping. Easy peasy lemon squeezy!
I've read some other methods, a lot of which suggest just leaving it out on your counter top but I wanted it nice a cold so I could drink it right away. I'll try this method next time and see what happens.

With all that coffee talk over with, now a new recipe brought to you by the fabulous Marta Greber over at What Should I Eat for Breakfast Today who made a delicious looking variation on the original recipe from Monet Moutrie. I've switched it up again with some cherries, white chocolate greek yogurt and a bit of basil. It's funny how one simple recipe can go through such transformations depending on who's hands it's in. Please let me know if you try it too and what flavours you decide to use.

I followed Marta's directions very closely so the only changes are in flavours really and I only made those changes because that's what I had in my fridge at the time. Each variation sounds just as tasty though and I'd love to make them, the original way, with blueberries! 

White Chocolate, Cherry, Basil Scones
Makes 6

2 cups all purpose flour
3 tsp baking powder
1/4 cup chilled butter, cubed
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
1/2 cup white chocolate greek yogurt
3/4 cup fresh cherries, pitted and quartered
1 egg whisked
* for extra white chocolate goodness, add in some white chocolate chips or chunks

Preheat oven to 400 F
In a large bowl place flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk these ingredients to combine then add your butter in small cubes. Rub it into the flour mixture, leaving it chunky. Add yogurt, sugar, cherries, and basil and combine with a wooden spoon.
If you're not in too much of a hurry, I'd suggest cooling your dough in the fridge a bit before rolling it out. This is especially a good idea if the butter in the dough has gotten too soft and warm from your toasty paws.
However, I didn't do this and they still turned out great. Cooling the dough would have made them a bit flakier though. I'll try it next time and report back.
Dump this mixture onto the surface you plan on rolling the final dough out onto and knead until everything is combined and the mixture forms a ball. Roll this ball out, forming a round shape, about 2 cm high. With a cup or round cutter, cut out 6 scones and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. With a pastry brush gently brush the egg mixture over each scone. 
Place in the oven at 400 F for 15 minutes.

Enjoy with a cup of your refreshing cold brew!

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