Saturday, June 6, 2015
Donna Bell's Bake Shop and Cooking Ruts
So when I hard that Pauley Perrette had a cookbook coming out with her friends and business partners, Darren Greenblatt and Matthew Sandusky, it immediately went on my wishlist.
And for my birthday I got a nice shiny copy of Donna Bell's Bake Shop. It's beautiful with lots of photographs and bunches of personal stories. The recipes are plentiful and varied with a handful of savory mixed in with the sweet.
I got this book at the beginning of May and it's now the beginning of June and I have made nothing from the book. Not one thing. Because soon after I got this book the dreaded cooking rut struck. While not quite as bad as the feared reading rut it's still not much fun. The cooking rut shows up every year around this time and I've yet to figure out a way to fight it. I just don't want to cook. I'm not interested. I don't want to spend the time. Nothing looks good. Everyone's schedules are busy and there's so much more time that gets spent outside. When you've been outside in 90+ temps with high humidity the last thing you want to do is spend the next hour or two cooking. Or at least I don't. But I'm starting to get bored with my rut and I'm starting to really miss baking so I picked up Donna Bell again and found a recipe that might just break me out of that rut.
Banana Scones with Orange Glaze. The bananas are warm and comforting while the orange provides a nice hit of freshness. Plus the recipe looks fairly simple:
4 cups all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into very small pieces
3/4 cup whole milk
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon banana extract (optional) (I won't be using this mostly because I don't have any)
1 ripe banana,
2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
5 tablespoons fresh orange juice
In a bowl, whisk together the sugar and orange juice until smooth.
For the scones:
In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, and baking soda. Add the cold butter pieces and quickly press between your fingertips to break up the butter and incorporate it into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Place the milk, heavy cream, sour cream, vanilla extract, and banana extract (if using) in another bowl. Whisk together until the sour cream is fully incorporated and the mixture is smooth. Make a well in the flour mixture and pour in all the liquid. Add the diced banana and mix with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together. Do not over mix. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Heat the oven to 400. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Lightly flour a work surface and place the dough on it. Cut the dough into 2 equal pieces. Wrap one piece in plastic wrap and set aside in the refrigerator. Press the dough down with your fingertips and flatten to an 8-inch circle, about 1/2 inch thick. Cut the circle into 8 equal wedges and place them on one of the prepared baking sheets about 1/2 inch apart. Bake the scones until golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes and drizzle with 1/2 the Orange Glaze. Serve warm. Repeat with remaining piece of dough and remaining Orange Glaze.
Hopefully these will help break me out of the cooking rut and I'll come back and review this cookbook fully. There's tons of scones and rolls and biscuits that look divine. If you try this before me come back and let me know how it goes! I may need a strong push to get out of this rut!
I'm linking up with Weekend Cooking hosted by Beth Fish Reads