Sunday, July 31, 2011

Booze and Scones

I took the day off yesterday, while bracing myself for tonight's outside-my-comfort-zone Indian meal. I'll be so sad if it doesn't turn out well. Anyway, I did mix up a pitcher of Planter's Punch (pg 51) to go with the steaks Matt grilled. Does a drink count as a recipe? Sure, why not?
Snapped mere seconds before Charlie's greedy mitts reached for it. "No, dear, that's Mommy's juice."
Planter's Punch is rum with orange, pineapple, and lime juice, plus grenadine and a pinch of salt. It tastes just as you'd expect--fruity and refreshing. At the risk of sounding like a lush, I'm going to say that this recipe could use more alcohol. There is only 1 cup of rum per 4 cups of juice. If I hadn't made it, I wouldn't know there was booze in my glass. Still, it's a really nice combination of juices.

Conclusion: Liked it.

For breakfast, I made Lemon-Blueberry Scones (pg 105). I'm not much of a scone expert. I've never been to England, and hate the ones served at Starbucks, so I pretty much stay away from scones. My understanding of them was that they're dry and dense, and that in England, they aren't sweet.
These scones were delightful. They're not dry at all. They're not very sweet (just three tablespoons of sugar), and have a lovely mild lemon flavor. I may add a bit more zest next time. Blueberries, obviously, are always welcome. The crumb is soft and moist, and, considering the cup of cream that goes into the batter, they're remarkably light. The book offers an assortment of variations (Cranberry-Orange, Ginger, Cakey Scones), and I'll probably make them all at some point. There's also a separate recipe for Oatmeal Scones, and a list of variations, so I'm sure to give those a shot, as well.

Conclusion: Liked it. Tasty and easy. Works for me!


  1. those scones look SO GOOD, just perfect. Hey good luck with your Indian food adventure. Eric had a Sri Lankan nanny for 4 years, and she sometimes cooked South Indian food for us, so I watched her make and cook spice blends. Miscellaneous thoughts on Indian food prep: the spice base, which is often sauteed in oil or ghee, is best cooked slowly over low heat without too much stirring involved. Much of this cuisine seems to benefit from gentle cooking. There is much tweaking and tasting and adjusting during the cooking to get the depth of flavors right so one spice doesn't dominate is good to experiment by adding very small amounts (1/4tsp), building up a complex mix, mainly to your preference and taste. As the food cooks the flavors do change quite a bit and need adjustment. Too much cumin, curry, or hot pepper can be readily tamed down with brown sugar and cream or butter. Fresh chopped coriander and a squeeze of lemon right before serving brightens up many of the curry dishes.

  2. Definitely trying that Planter's Punch! Looking forward to reading your Indian food meal!