Friday, February 12, 2016

It Was A Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day - Perfect for Lemon Cornmeal Scones

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...There are days I truly believe that the universe conspires to drive us mad. I'm sure I lost a cosmic card game, because today the fates and furies turned on me and anything that could go wrong did. My "terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day" began before eight o'clock this morning, when HVAC and electrical specialists arrived to install a new heat pump and furnace for our home. The old equipment died yesterday despite heroic attempts to resuscitate it, and we needed it replaced as soon as possible. It was obvious from the get-go that some rivalry existed between the two trades sent to install the new equipment. Their first hour together reminded me of road trips when my children were preteens and hated each other. I became so intent on avoiding the conflict that I managed to trip over a toolbox as I tried to get out of the room. The fall was not life threatening, but when I got up I was bleeding rather copiously from the mouth and had to pay the dentist an emergency visit. It seems I broke the post of one tooth and managed to crack two others. The only man who loves me more than the Silver Fox is my dentist. I have single-handedly put his children through the finest schools in the country. He was very glad to see me this morning. I was at his office for several hours while he put me back together as best he could, and when we returned the HVAC guy and his apprentice were eating pizza. "I have some bad news for you," he said. "There's a 'possum in your crawl space, and we won't go in there until he's gone. We don't do wild animals." Now, the Silver Fox and I do rats and roaches, but neither of us has worked with 'possums, so I got out the phone book and found someone who does - for $500 - when he has time - next week. We don't have time, so the Silver Fox dashed to a local farm store and bought what we think is a humane trap. Understanding my frustration, which was approaching volcanic proportions, the electrician and HVAC guy jury rigged the furnace so we could operate it on emergency power tonight. I'm happy to report we will not freeze to death this evening, and if the 'possum takes the bait, they will return tomorrow to install our beautiful and expensive new heating system. I can't let myself ponder what will happen if they don't. Now, I know you are asking what all this has to do with scones. Time had boxed me into a corner and I needed a fast and simple recipe if I was to share a feature with you tonight. I remembered these unusual scones, and thought those of you who enjoy barely sweet European desserts might like to give them a try. They take about 15 minutes to prepare and they can be table ready in less than an hour. The recipe is straight forward and the scones are foolproof. Here is how they are made.

Lemon Cornmeal Scones...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Land O' Lakes recipes

2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
2 tablespoons sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into 6 pieces
1/3 cup half and half
2 eggs
2 teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest

1) Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Grease a large cookie sheet or baking pan.
2) To make topping: Combine sugar and lemon zest in a small bowl.
3) Combine flour, cornmeal, 2 tablespoons sugar, baking powder and salt in bowl. Cut in butter with pastry blender or fork until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
4) Stir in half and half, eggs and 2 teaspoons lemon zest just until moistened. Turn dough onto lightly floured surface; knead 5 to 8 times until smooth, adding only enough flour as necessary to keep dough from sticking to surface.
5) Pat dough into 9-inch circle on prepared baking sheet. Sprinkle topping evenly over dough. Score circle into 8 wedges with knife, do not separate.
6) Bake 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool 10 minutes. Carefully separate scones. Yield: 8 scones.

Cook's note: Prepare scones as directed above, stirring in 1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries, chopped dried apricots or chopped pecans with flour.

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Anonymous said...

I think I would need someone to knock me out and wake me up next day , after I have eaten some of your scrumptious scones it is. I hate possums, they kill my chicken and look scary. Noises they male at night you would think some one is getting killed One morning I was coming from the morning run home and we have a big tree in the garden just next to the chicken coop. I saw our dog sitting under the tree and looking up. I looked up as well and as it was still dark I saw some black fur, Thinking it is our new black litlle cat i put my hands up .Only looking closer I saw I was about to hit big claws and some big ugly face was staring at me. I pulled my hands back and called my man for help.He came with the shotgun, goodby possum hello winter hat.Cheers

p.s pitty I can not show you the picture how big it actually was

Anonymous said...

Oh Mary, Such a combination of awful events! Do hope that tomorrow is better.
Glad we didn't take any tumbles like that on the trail to the Tiger's Nest.
The Scones look perfect for my trip to the beach next week.

debbie said...

That definitely belongs in the "bad day" category. Hope the possum takes the bait. I had a possum in my garage years back and called animal control. I don't remember if they came or not but the possum did leave. The scones do look good and I will be saving that recipe....

From the Kitchen said...

"Uncle"!! You've topped my HVAC woes of a few year's past! I can send you a recipe for possum if you like.


David said...

Mary, YIKES!!! Your day was a nightmare from Hell! Could you even eat the scones after the fall and dental repair? If I'd had the same bad day as you did, and I could eat the scones, I would have eaten them all in one sitting out of frustration. May tomorrow be a big improvement...and your possum and HVAC issues be resolved! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

hobby baker Kelly said...

Wow, yikes! Hope he takes the bait! Wishes for a better weekend, and bookmarking those scones to make later, yummy. :)

Entspinster said...

I had a possum in my bedroom, once. When animal control arrived the morning after there was nothing to be found -- must have left via a second story window.

Would have thought I dreamed it all, but I found it in the kitchen a few days later eating dry cat food. Shooed it out with a broom and taped the cat door shut.

Good luck with your possum.

Red Nomad OZ said...

I found the scariest part of your day the episode with the dentist!! It's been all downhill from my first, very early experience at the Indian Dental Training School,and I too have had the pleasure of single handedly supporting my dentist's kids through whatever expensive holidays and pursuits they wish to try! I'd be needing more than a scone after that day, though - hope it's all resolved now!

Nickie and Jim said...

Well, gee whiz, I just read your post ... and I empathize, especially the dentist part. Throw in
HVAC, 'possums, etc., and the mess would throw a saint into a tizzy. Hope you recovered! What about the critter, is it a goner? Howz the new expensive heating system? Working well, I pray.

I know you've read the book, "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day." It was a favorite of my son's (and mine, too). We may still have it (put away, with others, awaiting grandchildren!).

Take care of yourself!!

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