Sunday, April 23, 2017

Teddy Bears' Picnic Triple Chocolate Scones

Today is National Picnic Day. So in honor of the Day, I'm reposting a recipe I posted on National Teddy Bear Day. When I was little I always had teddy bear tea parties, and I always served them scones. My grandparents were married in London, and I got my love of tea with milk and sugar -- and tea with scones and clotted cream from them. So for today's Picnic Day, here's a recipe for Triple Chocolate Scones. Of course you might want to add some honey on your scones. Bears love honey!

Teddy Bears' Picnic Triple Chocolate Scones 

Ingredients 
1-3/4 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 Tbsp baking powder
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp Madagascar vanilla
6 Tbsp butter (cold)
7-8 Tbsp whole milk (cold)
1/2 cup chocolate chips
3 Tbsp chopped dark chocolate
Sugar Crystals

Directions 
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Sift together dry ingredients in large bowl (not the chocolate chips or chocolate). Add chocolate chips and dark chocolate.
Cut butter into dry ingredients until size of peas.
Put vanilla into small bowl and add milk.
Pour most of milk mixture into dry mix and stir to moisten. Dough should be moist enough to form a soft ball, but not sticky.
If needed, additional milk can be added 1-2 teaspoons at time.
Turn dough onto lightly floured cutting board and press out with hand to approximately 1/2 inch thickness. (makes 10-12 scones or 8-12 wedges)
Do not over-knead dough. Use as little flour as possible to keep dough from sticking to board.
Cut into desired shapes and place on lightly greased baking sheet.
Lightly brush tops with milk (or not).
Sprinkle with sugar crystals (you can get this at King Arthur Flour or in the baking section of the market). (If using a biscuit cutter or glass, dip the cutting edge in flour first)
Bake for 10-15 minutes depending on size. Start checking at 9 minutes. Do not overbake!
Sprinkle again with large sugar crystals while scones are still hot for visual appeal.

Tip: Scones are like biscuits. To get a tender, flaky scone, dough should be handled as little as possible, and you should always use cold butter and cold milk.

Chocolate Lime Swirl Pie: Retro Ad & Recipe

I love all these Retro Ads & Recipes. Some are better than others. Visually they don't always match our 2017 sensibilities, but taste-wise they often do. As always, you can substitute higher quality ingredients to create the very best dessert. Jelly powder, by the way, is jello..you can actually use green jello in this recipe, and not add the food coloring. Here's a blast from the past from Carnation for Chocolate Lime Swirl. As the ad reads: No cooking, No baking. How easy is this? Don't want to make this? Just enjoy the Retro Ad!




Saturday, April 22, 2017

National Jelly Bean Day!

Today is National Jelly Bean Day, and my favorite jelly beans are Jelly Bellies! I love all the flavors, especially the Jelly Belly chocolate covered jelly beans. The Jelly Belly Chocolate Dips are gourmet jelly beans covered in dark chocolate. Flavors include Very Cherry, Raspberry, Strawberry, Coconut, and Orange. Jelly Belly Chocolate Dips are gluten-free, gelatin-free and certified OU Dairy Kosher. My favorite is the Very Cherry. Just an FYI, there is no hard candy shell on the actual jelly bean center, so the chocolate covered jelly beans are the same size as regular jelly beans. This chocolate jelly bean has a real chocolate aroma and a nice mouth-feel.

If you want more of a 'plain' chocolate Jelly Bean, try the Chocolate Pudding jelly belly.

I love to take young out-of-towners to the Jelly Belly Factory in Fairfield, CA. There you can see jelly bellies being made, tour the art exhibit, stop by the soda fountain, buy jelly bellies and much more. When I first went to the factory, it was more open and low key. Now it's a bit more sterile and everything is behind glass walls. I'm sure that's better for production, safety and quality, but I preferred the old way. Kind of like the Hershey Factory tours when I was little. I was sure someone would fall in a vat, and maybe they did. That was pre-Willy Wonka.

I don't bake with jelly beans, and, if truth be told, they're not in my pantry. But there's always a time and a place for them, especially today on National Jelly Bean Day. So here are some 'recipes' from the Jelly Belly website for combining flavors. Great Fun!

Jelly Belly California Grizzly Painting