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Archive for September, 2010

I have been wanting to make cheese & scallion scones ever since I had (an expensive) one in a cafe three weeks ago. Today we had a brunch gathering with some good friends so I decided to make it. The scones came out very delicious, especially with butter! I chilled the scones for 30 minutes before baking so the butter firms up and thus producing a flakier texture (same theory as for pie/tart crust), and it did the trick. A common cheese used here is cheddar, but I used Asiago cheese instead as I love its flavor.

Asiago Scallion Scones

Asiago Scallion Scones

Asiago Scallion Scones (makes 12 small triangle scones)

Ingredients:
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
6 tbsp cold butter– cut into small cubes
1 cup grated Asiago cheese
4 stalks of scallion (green onion)– chopped
2 eggs
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/3 cup whole milk

Method:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, sift in flour, salt, sugar and baking powder. Rub in cold butter with your fingers until the mixture resembles crumbles. Add in cheese and scallion, mix well.
  2. Use a fork to beat eggs in a small bowl. Add in milk and mustard, beat to combine. Scoop out 2 tbsp of the egg mixture for glazing. Pour the remaining egg mixture into the flour mixture. Using a spatula, mix until the dough just combined.
  3. Transfer dough to a floured surface. Gently knead the dough a couple of times, then pat into a disc. Divide the dough in half, then shape each half into a disc of  6-inch diameter. Cut each disc into 6 equal small wedges.
  4. Place the scones on a floured non-stick baking pan and chill in the freezer for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375°F.
  5. Glaze the egg mixture on chilled scones, and bake for 20 minutes. Cool scones slightly on a rack. Served warm with butter.

Regina’s Note:

  • Chill scones before baking will produce a flakier texture.
  • Different cheese will create different flavor to the scones.
  • For a spicy version, try adding 1/2 tsp of crushed chili flakes, or ground black pepper.
  • Reference: King Arthur Flour– Scallion Cheddar Scones

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I am experimenting this new recipe while corn is still in season. The corn was sweet and juicy, and to prevent the liquid from the corn drawing out during baking and thus creating dense scones (lesson learned from the disastrous Banana Scones), I roasted the corn kennels in a dry clean pan first. I can smell the corn from the scones, and they taste quite mild just like any classic scones, although I would probably add another 1/2 teaspoon of sugar next  time. Walnut, as usual, adds texture to the bite. The scones taste better if served with butter, otherwise it’s a little plain on its own.

Corn & Walnut Scones

Corn & Walnut Scones

Corn & Walnut Scones Recipe (makes 8 pieces)

Ingredients:

2 cups all purpose flour, plus extra for sprinkling
1 1/2 tbsp dry milk powder
2  1/2 tbsp sugar— will use 3 tbsp sugar next time
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 tbsp cold unsalted butter– cut into pieces
1/2 cup toasted walnut– chopped
corn kennels of 1 ear of corn– roast in clean dry pan until slightly char, let cool
2 eggs
2/3 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Method:

  1. In a large bowl, stir flour, milk powder, sugar, baking powder and salt to combine. Rub in butter until the mixture resembles of coarse crumbs. Add walnut and roasted corn kennels, mix well.
  2. Add eggs, vanilla extract and milk in a small bowl, whisk to combine. Scoop out 2 tbsp to reserve for egg wash. Pour the egg mixture all at once into the flour mixture. Use a spatula gently stir until the dough comes together. Do not over mix or the scones will be tough.
  3. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead the dough gently 4-6 times, then divide the dough in half. Pat each half into 6 inch circle, and cut into quarters, for a total of 8 wedges.
  4. Place scones on a lined baking sheet, 2 inches apart, and chill in freezer for 30 minutes. In the meantime, preheat oven to 400°F.
  5. Brush scones with reserved egg wash and bake for 15-18 minutes, until the center is baked through and golden brown on the edge. Serve immediately.

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Drunken chicken wing is ordinary, but it is the preserved fruit that adds twist to the flavor, and I decide to try it  out for a potluck party. Amazingly, the flavor of preserved kumquat goes very well with the wine, but I find the wine is too strong to my taste. Next time I will dilute the wine with water. This is also a very easy dish and can be prepared ahead of time, perfect for busy days and great as party food.

Drunken Chicken Wings with Preserved Kumquat (话梅鸡翼)

Drunken Chicken Wings with Preserved Kumquat (话梅醉翼)

Drunken Chicken Wings with Preserved Kumquat Recipe

Ingredients:

2-3 lbs chicken wings mid joint
1/2 tbsp salt

water for boiling wings

lots of ice cubes– I used 4 trays

Marinade:
750 ml ShaoXing Hua Diao Wine (绍兴花雕酒)– will try 300 ml wine mix with 300 ml water next time
20 preserved sweet kumquat (话梅金桔)– or preserved sweet plum (甜话梅)
8 tbsp fish sauce– I used ‘3 Crab’ brand
4-5 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt

Method:

  1. Clean chicken wings and season with salt. Cook wings in a big pot with boiling water (water must cover the wings) uncovered until chicken is cooked, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, combine all marinade ingredients in a bowl, stir until sugar dissolves. Lightly smash kumquat for the flavor to come out quicker.
  2. Drain chicken wings to a big bowl cover with ice cubes (I did one layer of chicken follow by one layer of ice to ensure even coldness). When the wings are cold they will be firm to the touch.
  3. Remove cold wings and soak in the marinade, cover and chill in the fridge for at least half day or overnight for the flavor to come out. Serve chill or room temperature.

Note:

  • The  longer the wings soak in marinade, color of the wings will turn darker.
  • I freeze the marinade– we’ll see if it’s still good for reuse.

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