Friday, January 27, 2012

Fifty Second Fridays: Dare to Bake

Welcome to the end of January! As you may have noticed, we are no longer in fast fact mode, but rather providing you with nearly a minute's worth of reading material (ok, perhaps more). I have to admit that this is a dangerous post, particularly if you are not supposed to be consuming wheat flour or sugar (oops). Luckily, I have both the good and bad (although both quite tasty) versions below. Audax Artifex was our January 2012 Daring Bakers’ host. Aud worked tirelessly to master light and fluffy scones (a/k/a biscuits) to help us create delicious and perfect batches in our own kitchens!

Don't be confused; these are not your typical triangle-shaped scones we Americans eat. These are the British versions that are more like Southern homestyle biscuits! Not as sweet, and much flakier!

Basic Vegan Scones (yield 8)
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp fresh baking powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tbs sugar (optional)
2 tbs coconut oil
1/2 cup cold almond or coconut milk

1. Using a fork, mix together flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, and coconut oil. Dry ingredient should thoroughly coat the oil. The rest is from the DB recipe...
2. Add nearly all of the liquid at once into the rubbed-in flour/fat mixture and mix until it just forms a sticky dough (add the remaining liquid if needed). The wetter the dough the lighter the scones (biscuits) will be!
3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board, lightly flour the top of the dough. To achieve an even homogeneous crumb to your scones knead very gently about 4 or 5 times (do not press too firmly) the dough until it is smooth. To achieve a layered effect in your scones knead very gently once (do not press too firmly) then fold and turn the kneaded dough about 3 or 4 times until the dough has formed a smooth texture. (Use a floured plastic scraper to help you knead and/or fold and turn the dough if you wish.)
4. Pat or roll out the dough into a 6 inch by 4 inch rectangle by about ¾ inch thick. Stamp out without twisting six 2-inch rounds, gently reform the scraps and cut two more scones (these two scones will not raise as well as the others since the extra handling will slightly toughen the dough). Or use a well-floured sharp knife to form squares or wedges as you desire.
5. Place the rounds just touching on a baking dish if you wish to have soft-sided scones or place the rounds spaced widely apart on the baking dish if you wish to have crisp-sided scones. Glaze the tops with milk if you want a golden colour on your scones or lightly flour if you want a more traditional look to your scones.
6. Bake in the preheated (475F) very hot oven for about 10 minutes (check at 8 minutes since home ovens at these high temperatures are very unreliable) until the scones are well risen and are lightly coloured on the tops. The scones are ready when the sides are set.
7. Immediately place onto cooling rack to stop the cooking process, serve while still warm with jam :)

Almost Allergen-Free Scones (yields 8)
2 tbs coconut oil
1/3 cup rice flour
1/3 cup millet flour
1/4 cup tapioca starch
1/4 cup almond meal (or sub other gf flour like coconut)
1/4 cup dessicated coconut
1/8 tsp xanthan gum
1/8-1/4 tsp powdered stevia (or 1/2 packet; optional)
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup cold coconut milk

1. Using a fork, mix together flours, gum, baking powder, salt, stevia, and coconut oil. Dry ingredient should thoroughly coat the oil.
2. Add liquid, fully incorporating (no worries about over-mixing). Plop ice cream scoopfulls on a non-stick baking sheet. You can also go for the kneading method above, but the texture still will never match that great flakiness we all crave!
3. Bake for 10-15 minutes at 375F until starting to brown. Remove and allow to cool for a few minutes. Enjoy!

This puppy is also up on Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays!


Jenni said...

Great job! Your biscuits (or scones) look amazing! I am very impressed that you got such a light, flaky texture without using butter!

Ruth H. said...

I made my scones with vegetable shortening instead of butter. I never thought to use coconut oil... I might have to try that! Your scones look great, and I am impressed withyour gluten free recipe! Great job on the challenge.