Tuesday, February 21, 2012

There's Snow Better Time for Cinnamon Roll Scones

We got a beautiful, if short-lived, snowfall recently.

Borga had a nice time keeping track of everything that was happening...the softly falling flakes, the seed-seeking birds, the playful squirrels.

What...it's time to go in already?

It may be freezing outside, but we've got a lot of beautiful green inside. I've started two new trailing houseplants, and although my paperwhite flowers have died, the green stems are still tall and strong. The bougainvillea tree is blooming, too.

It's so beautiful, brightening up the corner where it sits.

The amaryllis plants are growing nice, healthy stalks, although they won't actually bloom for many weeks.

I love winter green!

Besides tending for the indoor plants and taking silly glamour shots of our cats...

...I've been working on some knitting projects. This past weekend, I was finally able to give away this baby blanket that I knitted late last year. It's a classic design known as Old Shale, with cables in between the fans of lace. I really enjoyed knitting it.

I rarely buy yarn...the yarn I bought in Portland was the first yarn I'd bought in a year...but I had to go to my local yarn store to buy some gift yarn for a friend, and I was seduced by some bulky-weight Misti Alpaca. So soft, and beautiful saturated colors.

It's amazingly soft and snuggly, and it begged to be made into something special. Unfortunately, it's quite expensive, and I only bought 1 skein...not enough for the scarf I'd hoped for.

Before deciding on a project, I knitted up several swatches to see how the colors played out. This swatch of garter stitch was too dense for my tastes.

I tried a drop stitch swatch, which I really liked, at first. Drop stitching is really easy. It's knitting stockinette, but you loop the yarn around your needle twice to knit, instead of once. It makes great use of a small bit of yarn and displays the colors nicely.

Drop stitch patterns move amazingly fast and I finished a scarf in an hour. I just didn't like the finished product, though, so I frogged it (to Todd's horror - he doesn't yet understand that sometimes yarn and your chosen project don't agree) and started again.

I originally shied away from knitting a stockinette swatch, because stockinette edges curl, and the fabric is quite dense. However, I fell in love with the swatch I knitted.

Armed with the stitch I wanted and the yarn information, I was then able to make an informed decision when searching the Ravelry database for a pattern. I settled on a pretty cowl...which I will make sometime soon!

I've been cooking a lot lately, as usual. As much as I'm trying to stay away from sweets, I saw a recipe on Annie's Eats for cinnamon roll scones. The sugar content didn't look too high, and they are made with both white and whole wheat flour. I decided to throw caution into the wind and make a somewhat modified version.

Cinnamon Roll Scones
Modified from Annie's Eats
Makes 14 scones

1 stick butter, cold
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup greek yogurt (or sour cream)
1 cup white flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

Milk, for brushing
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2/3 cup toasted pecans (optional)
1/4 cup cinnamon chips (optional)

3 ounces cream cheese
1/2 - 3/4 cup powdered sugar, to taste
a dash of vanilla
enough milk to bring the glaze to the desired consistency

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Combine the flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl and whisk to combine. Cut in your cold butter, using a fork or a pastry cutter, until the butter is reduced to pea-sized bits. In a separate bowl, mix milk and yogurt and fold into dry ingredient mixture. Be sure not to over mix!

When your dough is mostly mixed, flour your work space well and roll out dough into a 10 inch square. Brush the surface well with milk. Whisk together filling ingredients and sprinkle over dough, covering the surface evenly. Roll your dough into a roll. It will be messy...that's all right.

Use a sharp knife to cut your roll into one-inch slices. I got 14 slices out of mine. Place them on a pizza stone or greased cookie sheet.

Mmmmm...don't they look good?

Bake for 14 - 16 minutes, until golden brown.

Whisk up your glaze and ice the tops.

These are soft and tender like a scone and sweet like a cinnamon roll...but much healthier!

I hope you give them a try soon.

Have a great week!

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