Pumpkin Scones

I love scones. I’m not sure why. There are certainly richer, more savagely delicious treats than scones. Perhaps, I just love the idea of scones, nibbling on one while sipping hot tea and perhaps reading a book or solving a mystery. (Can anyone say Miss Jane Marple?)

Regardless of the reason, they are tasty. And, unless you’re a food masochist, they’re easy to make. I made pumpkins scones after I saw this recipe from the Food Network little booklet of 50 canned pumpkin recipes.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 stick of cold butter, cubed
  • 2/3 cup solid pack pumpkin
  • ¾ cup cream

Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and pumpkin pie spice. Work in the cold butter with a pastry blender. In a separate bowl, whisk the pumpkin and cream then stir into the flour mixture.SconeSquare

Pat into an 8-inch square on a floured surface, then cut into 16 triangles. Transfer to a baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees F, 20 minutes.

Full-recipe disclosure: I drizzled glaze and sprinkled cinnamon on mine to make them extra tasty and pretty.FinishedScone

Blueberry Muffins

There are several advantages to living in a rural area. One of them is being able to pick berries in the summertime. For the last several years, we’ve gone to Bozberry Farms in Turtlepoint, Pa., to pick the plumpest, biggest, sweetest blueberries I’ve ever eaten. You gotta trust me on this one because I’ve eaten a lot of blueberries in the past half century. These are amazing.

I always end up picking way too many, in part because picking blueberries is so much easier than picking other fruit. There aren’t any briers to fight with, and there is no bending, unless you really want to get the berries near the bottom.

Once I get back from my annual trip, with my buckets sagging with the weight of these blue beauties and my stomach full of them, I have to get baking. Given the choice, He Who Must Be Fed wanted blueberry muffins first.Blueberries

Ingredients:

  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups Bisquick mix
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • Cinnamon, for dusting
  • Sparkling sugar, for sprinkling

Heat your oven to 400°. Line your muffin tins with paper or foil cups. Beat the eggs slightly in a medium bowl. Stir in Bisquick mix, milk, oil and sugar until just moistened. Gently fold in your blueberries.MixingMuffinBatter

Divide your batter evenly among the muffin cups. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sparkling sugar.

MuffinsBeforeOven

Bake 18 to 20 minutes or until light brown and wonderful. Remove from the pan and enjoy. He Who Must Be Fed slathers butter on them, but these are so good you don’t really need the butter. (Wait, what did I just say? Butter is always a welcome addition, at least in my home.  Store in an air-tight container.

MuffinsWithButter

 

If you happen to make it to Bozberry Farm, tell Brenda I said “hi.”

Delicious breakfast sausage casserole

I love all things breakfast. Pancakes. Waffles. Bacon. Bacon. Bacon. Eggs. Sausage. While He Who Must Be Fed and I don’t usually eat those delicious breakfast items Monday through Friday, we do like to enjoy some of them on the weekends.

And if you can combine some of those breakfast ingredients together? Fabulous.

Here’s one to try, a breakfast sausage casserole that includes some of those marvelous breakfast ingredients: eggs, cheese, bread, sausage. What’s not to love?

Ingredients:

  • ½ loaf of sliced white bread
  • 1 pound fresh bulk pork sausage with sage
  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • I medium onion, chopped
  • 3 small sweet peppers chopped or ½ green pepper chopped
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 large eggs, lightly beaten

Grease a 9×13 pan. Cut your bread into 1-inch cubes and spread into the bottom of your greased pan.

BreadCubesForCasserole

In a medium skillet, brown your sausage until no longer pink. Remove the sausage with a slotted spoon. In the sausage essence (AKA fat) left in the pan, cook your onion and peppers until they’re soft, about five minutes.

Layer your cooked sausage over the bread. When the veggies are done, layer them on top of the sausage. Then top with cheese.BreadAndSausage

BreadSausageAndCheese

Stir together the half-and-half, dry mustard, salt and eggs. Pour the mixture over the cheese. Cover the casserole with foil and refrigerate for eight hours or overnight. I overnighted it.

CasseroleIntoOven

Preheat your over to 350°.

Bake your covered casserole until set and slightly golden brown, about 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and let it set for 15 minutes before serving. We were super hungry that Sunday, so I didn’t let it set, but it turned out fine.

Full-recipe disclosure: If you check out the recipe online, you’ll notice it calls for 10 ounces of cheese, but that was just too much cheese, so I reduced it to eight ounces. You’ll also notice the original recipe doesn’t call for onions and peppers, but c’mon, what goes better with sausage than onions and peppers? Adding them, my friends, was a no-brainer.

Enjoy.

Bacon Beer Bread

“Wow.” That’s all He Who Must Be Fed said when he bit into a warm slice of Bacon Beer Bread, a new recipe I got from The Novice Chef blog.

As soon as I saw the recipe, I knew it was going to be a winner. After all, it has the three b’s – bacon beer and butter – and we weren’t disappointed.  Since I knew it was going to be special, I made two loaves, so I could share one with my friend James and his family. They liked it, too.

Ingredients:

  • 5 strips of thick-cut bacon (I used Oscar Mayer)
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 12 ounces of beer
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

BaconCookingCook your bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate. Pour the bacon grease into a heat-proof bowl and let cool. Once bacon is cool enough to touch, rip it into little pieces and set aside. If you used your fingers instead of chopping the bacon with a knife then you can rub a little dab of the “bacon essence” behind each ear to make yourself irresistible to your significant other. 🙂

Preheat your oven to 350°F. Grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add your pieces of bacon. Using a wooden spoon, stir the beer into the dry ingredients until just mixed.

Pour the melted butter into the bottom of the loaf pan. Then spoon the batter into the pan. Pour the cooled bacon grease on top of the batter.BaconBreadBeforeCooking

Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve immediately with a generous bit of more butter.

It’s also delicious the next day, toasted with some more butter.

BaconBeerBreadDone