The building blocks for wellness and happiness are the same for each of us however we all need a different mix and variation. This is a topic near and dear to me. The main ingredients I use for well-being are Rest - Food - Stillness – Giggle/Joy/Connection - Movement. Last week, I had a wonderful experience of Joy and Connection and it involved baking and delivering scones.
Finding connection has been harder to come with our current pandemic state and my baking and delivery adventure was just what I needed. Cranberry and orange scones are a favourite in my house. I was also having a social distanced hike with a friend I had not seen in a while, and I wanted to give her a little treat! During our Friday virtual Hatha practice I was telling the early attendees about my scones and how my house was smelling soooo good! A few students commented that I knew their address. Hmmmm, yes, I do, I thought to myself. I had some errands to run and so I packed up some scones and made my deliveries.
I was thrilled to see the smiles and the surprised faces. It was a cold day, but I was warm with happiness. Giving a joyful surprise makes me joyful. I also was able to see live smiling faces. They were not on a screen. They were there in living colour. Even though it was a small thing, the effects were broad. The important piece to applying the above ingredients I have listed above is to be fully present with all your feelings. What do you do to bring in Joy/Giggles/Connection to your day?
Scone recipes all the have same base and then the extras. What I like about this recipe is the cardamom and the fresh orange juice and zest. If you like richer scones, you can leave out the orange juice and increase the cream/milk. I would recommend using an orange extract if you leave out the fresh orange juice. The more orangy the better in our house. I have not tried this with gluten free ingredients but I will let you know how it goes when I do.
Cranberry Orange Scones
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp baking powder
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1 1/8 tbsp orange zest
1 stick butter (1/2 cup) in small cubes or through grater
1 large egg
½ cup milk (cream or milk or buttermilk)
¼ cup of fresh orange juice
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups cranberries (fresh or frozen) *I use a rough measurement.
Preheat oven 425°(F).
Combine the following ingredients fully. Flour, salt, sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, orange zest, cinnamon, and cardamom.
Add butter in small cubes (I use a medium sized grater) and work butter into the dry mixed with a pastry cutter or two forks. The dough should be course and the butter the size of a pea at the biggest.
Combine and whisk together the egg, fresh orange juice, milk/cream/buttermilk, and vanilla.
Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture. Add in the cranberries. Mix everything together with a large wooden spoon or a spatula until just moistened.
The dough will not be smooth looking when you place on a flat floured surface.
Knead the dough lightly a couple of times to make an 8-inch-wide circle.
Cut the disc into even wedges and place on baking sheet with a couple of inches space around the pastry.
Bake on the middle rack until the scones are golden. About 18 minutes.
Add glaze if you wish once they have cooled for a few minutes. A simple glaze is 1 cup confectioners’ sugar, ½ pure vanilla extract, 2 tbsp fresh orange juice, 1 tsp orange zest, pinch of salt. Mix and drizzle.
Best served warm with a favourite tea, human, or fur kid!