Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice Scones

Hi, everyone!  I’m overjoyed to be writing this from home (arrived late Sunday night), but instead of an update just yet, this is a warm welcome to a delightful event…

It’s been a long time since I’ve been to a baby shower — even longer since I had one.  (My “baby boy” is 30 and my “baby girl” is 27.)  How time flies… and how quickly babies grow up!

That’s why I’m tickled to be part of this virtual event honoring Jenna of Jenna’s Everything Blog.  (For an honest, humorous, heartfelt chronicle of her pregnancy, please click on this link.It’s a joy reading the musings of this first-time-Mom-to-be and I’m still trying to figure out how she does that disappearing belly trick! :)

Today’s hostess is Veronica of Veronica’s Cornucopia and she put a lot of effort into coordinating things.  Thank you!  It was fun to be in on the “secret” from the start; later in this post, there are links to everyone who joined in to surprise Jenna.  (Be sure to stop in and say “hi!”)

Awhile back, Jenna announced that their bundle of joy is a sweet lil’ girl and it made me think of a nursery rhyme I used to read to my own daughter.

Sugar and spice and everything nice,

That’s what little girls are made of.

Which reminded me of a terrific scone recipe… 

Sugar & Spice & Everything Nice Scones

2 c. all purpose flour

4 to 6 Tbsp. sugar

1 Tbsp baking powder

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp. ground cardamom

1/3 c. dried fruit (I used raisins — regular and golden)

1 c. heavy cream, plus more for brushing

Coarse sugar for sprinkling

Preheat oven to 425° F.

In a large bowl, mix together dry ingredients with a fork.  Add dried fruit; mix to coat.

Add heavy cream; mix just until dough gathers around the fork.

Turn dough onto a floured surface.  Knead briefly (about 5 seconds); pat into a circle.

Cut dough into wedges; transfer to an ungreased baking sheet.

Brush tops with heavy cream and sprinkle with coarse sugar.

Bake 10 to 12 minutes until tops are golden; cool on a wire rack.

If you’re in the mood for something “sweeter,” drizzle with powdered sugar icing, if desired.

(P.S.  No recipe credit that I know of — it’s been in my recipe box for ages — source unknown.)

In closing, I’d be remiss if I didn’t give something to our “sweetest” guest of honor — baby Alice!

A is for angelic — a gift from heaven above.

L is for the little things Mom will come to know and love.

I is for the intricate way God wove you in her womb.

C is for your countenance that will light up every room.

E is for eternal — you’re in Mom’s heart to stay.

Hello there, dear sweet Alice — Happy Baby Shower Day!

Thanks again for joining us and congratulations, Jenna!  Here are the links…

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City Songbird (Greensboro, NC): Merry Christmas, Alice!
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Eats Well With Others (New York, NY): Peanut Butter and Honey Ice Cream
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Hunting for Bliss (Bozeman, MT): Garam Masala Deviled Eggs
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Pinking Shears & Broccoli Spears (Newark, DE): Making Food Good For Your Baby
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Sydney Shares (Eugene, OR): Baby BLTs 
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That’s Some Good Cookin’ (Salt Lake City, UT): Cheesecake Cookie Bars
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The Pajama Chef (Bloomington, IN): Iced Tea with Ginger-Mint Simple Syrup
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Two Dogs In The Kitchen (Sterling, MI): Spicy Asian Meatballs
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Veronica’s Cornucopia (Wichita, KS): Raspberry Almond Fudge Cookies
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Very Culinary (Sacramento, CA): Toasted Orzo and Chickpea Salad
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Words on Wendhurst: A Gift For Jenna and Alice
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Enjoying the sweetest things in life,

~ Kim

Grandma’s Cardamom Bread (Bohemian Braided Bread)

Grandma's Cardamom Bread (Bohemian Braided Bread)

Sometimes you revisit the past to move forward in the present, only to discover the past has changed. (!)

This post was originally entitled “My First Guest Post” and it was linked to a blog that apparently no longer exists.  (No worries.  I totally understand… “stuff happens.”)  Following are excerpts from the original post, along with Grandma’s Cardamom Bread recipe.

One of the things I love about blogging is that it’s like having the world’s cookbook at your fingertips.  You can find a recipe for anything, anytime, anywhere!

Coincidentally (or not), cardamom isn’t so easy to find, especially in the middle of Oklahoma.  After I finally located some, I promptly made a batch of Kheer that I’d been wanting to try…

As well as my Grandma’s Cardamom Bread (Bohemian Braided Bread) — a recipe from my past, in more ways than one!

Grandma’s Cardamom Bread (Bohemian Braided Bread)

1/4 c. warm water

1 pkg. yeast

1/2 c. milk, scalded & cooled

6 Tbsp. sugar

1/2 tsp. salt

1 egg, beaten

1/4 c. butter, softened

2-1/2 to 3 c. flour (more or less), divided

1 tsp. cardamom

1/4 tsp. nutmeg

1/4 tsp. mace

1/2 c. raisins (I use regular & golden raisins)

Powdered sugar icing

Maraschino cherries & whole blanched almonds, for garnish

Dissolve yeast in warm water; let stand until foamy.

Combine milk, sugar, and salt.  Stir in yeast mixture.

Add egg and butter; mix well with a wooden spoon.

Add enough flour (in two additions) to form a soft dough.  Use only enough flour as needed and “don’t be afraid of a sticky dough,” per Grandma.

Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead until it springs back and forms a smooth ball.

Place dough in a buttered bowl, then turn “buttered side up.”  Cover with a damp towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled; punch down.

Allow to rise until doubled a second time; punch down again.

Sprinkle dough with mace, cardamom and raisins; knead in until combined.

Divide dough into 4 equal parts.  Shape 3 parts into 14″ long ropes and place them on a lightly greased baking sheet.  Braid loosely to form one large braid; pinch ends to seal.

Divide remaining dough into 3 parts; shape into 12″ long ropes.  Braid them and place smaller braid on top of larger one; pinch ends together.  Cover; let rise in a warm place until double.

Preheat oven to 350° F.  Bake 40 to 60 minutes until golden and “hollow sounding” when thumped.  Transfer from baking sheet to a wire rack.

Drizzle powdered sugar icing over the loaf while it’s warm; garnish with maraschino cherries and whole blanched almonds.

Cool completely before slicing.

Grandma's Cardamom Bread

Enjoying the flavor of friendship — past and present,

~ Kim