15 January 2018

baker, baker

I asked the maid in a dulcet tone
To order me a buttered scone;
The silly girl had been and gone
And ordered me a buttered scone.

The Oxford Dictionary reports that the first mention of the word scone was in 1513. Derived from the Scottish, the Dutch, possibly the German, or Gaelic - a quintessential piece of bread, from tea culture old and new - whose names have merged to make its way to our tea tables.
Cream Scones
recipe from Bon Appetit

1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3 cups all-purpose flour (plus more for surface)
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces
1 large egg, beaten
1 1/4 cups heavy cream (plus more for brushing)

Preheat oven to 375°. 

Whisk granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and 3 cups flour in a large bowl to combine. Add butter and toss to coat. 

Using your fingers or a pastry blender, work butter into flour until only pea-size pieces remain. Make a well in the center; add egg and cream and mix with a fork, incorporating dry ingredients a little at a time, until a shaggy dough forms (it’s okay if it looks a little dry; don’t overwork). 

Lightly knead dough in bowl until it just comes together.

Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and pat into a 1"-thick round. Cut into 8 wedges and transfer to a lined baking sheet. Brush dough with cream. Bake scones until golden brown, 25–30 minutes.

06 January 2018

fresh pasta dough + a lasagna


Fresh Pasta Dough (recipe below)
1 pound ground beef
1 jar tomato sauce
2 cups mozzarella cheese
1 medium carrot, grated
1 large clove garlic

1 1/2 cups ricotta
1 large egg
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
a dash nutmeg
a sprig fresh thyme

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Begin browning beef in a wide pan over medium-high heat. When meat is barely pink in the center add garlic and grated carrot and reduce the heat to medium. Season with salt.

Pour jar of tomato sauce into the meat mixture, and reduce heat to low, stirring occasionally.  Pan should be at a low simmer.

While the sauce is cooking combine ricotta, egg, Parmesan, thyme, and nutmeg. Mix well and season with salt and pepper.

Divide pasta dough into quarters. Right before assembly, flatten each piece of dough into a flat rectangle, and feed through the widest setting of pasta roller. Decrease pasta roller setting, and feed through again - pasta sheets should be paper thin.

Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce evenly on the bottom of your baking dish, and lay down your first layer of pasta, slightly overlapping each sheet. Alternate layers of pasta, ricotta mixture, mozzarella, and tomato sauce. Top final layer of pasta with remaining tomato sauce, and generously sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan.

Bake for 40-50 minutes, until the cheese is bubbly.

Fresh Pasta Dough

2 cups flour, plus extra for dusting
3 large eggs, room temperature
pinch of salt

Add all ingredients to bowl of food processor and pulse until a sticky dough just begins forming.

Knead on a lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic. Form into a ball, wrap tightly with plastic wrap, and let rest at room temperature for 1 1/2 hours before use.