Hey there party people! Hope you all had a super awesome holiday season and jazz hands inducing New Years! We spent a week enjoying the surroundings of Sedona, which was a hell of a lot nicer weather-wise then Calgary. You mean I can walk around in a hoodie without getting frostbitten?! Wooohooo! So it may have not been bathing suit weather, but I’ll take it over -30 any day. While all my friends were freezing off their tuckus, we were driving all over Arizona, trying to see everything we could in the short time we had. We’re never been away during xmas before, so the whole experience was new to us. It was kind of weird but also pretty great, we spent xmas day looking over the edge of the Grand Canyon, which was so incredibly beautiful and surreal, definitely a place I would like to go back to. I haven’t gone through my photos yet but fingers are crossed that a few turned out!
After travelling for the week and immediately going to work upon arrival back home, once New Year’s came along, I wanted nothing more than to do nothing. And that my friends, is exactly what we did. New year’s eve consisted of some wine, some movies and falling asleep 11:30pm, it was fabulous. It was even nicer getting up the next morning without a hangover, hardly anyone on the roads and enjoying pancakes at a friend’s house. Double points for not making said pancakes! I’m all for making fancy brunch fair but sometimes it’s nice just to hang out with great friends while drinking coffee and eating pancakes without having to do anything but show up 😉
I know with the New Year comes all the New Year’s resolutions, but personally I’m not a big fan making big changes or commitments January 1st just because it’s January 1st. Not that there’s anything wrong with making New Year resolutions, if that’s your thing, have at it and good luck to you! Just be as realistic as you can about what you want to accomplish, for example, if you’ve never run in your life, maybe don’t plan to run the Boston marathon right off the get-go and if you are able to do that, then you my friend are pure magic. Or if you aren’t already, maybe give veganism a stab? Hint hint, nudge nudge; hey I figure it’s worth a shot!
I tend to be more of the goal setting type and they’re pretty low key goals at that, like for instance, some of my intentions are to finish one of the projects we’ve started in our house or plant something edible in our garden this year….like one single thing, seriously, just one thing and I’ll be content. Then there are things like give blood, get involved in more charity events (such as the WWVBS), use my poor neglected cookbooks more, read more, take another cake decorating class and maybe even teach my own vegan cooking class?? Ok, that last one is a long shot, but you never know.
My last goal is one I’m pretty sure I can stick with, continue to eat crazy delicious food! No diets for me in January, instead I’m kicking off the year with a sweet, buttery, apple filled brunch. These things, I tell ya, they’re just the best scones I’ve ever made! And that’s a pretty big claim because I’ve made a hellofalotta scones over the years. They were discontinuing the apple butter at one of the stores near me (at a discounted price), so I did what any logical vegan gal would do and bought them all! I’m greedy like that 😉 Plus I adore apple butter, it’s my most favoritist* spread. To jack these scones up with as much apple flavor as possible, I filled them with fresh apples, apple butter and coated them in an apple butter glaze, hot damn, that’s a lotta apple.
Scones are one of those tasty things that just so happen to be ridiculously easy to make too, especially if you’re lucky enough to own a food processor. Just mix, shape, bake and drizzle. I coated the tops with some coconut milk and then sprinkled with cinnamon sugar for some extra cinnamon goodness, you can skip this step or instead skip the apple butter drizzle, but they both add some extra tastiness to the scones. These are best the day they’re baked, they come out of the oven all crisp and flaky, but after a day in a container you get a little moisture distribution from the apples. They’re still super tasty, just not as crisp. So I guess that means you’ll just have to eat them faster 😉
*totally not a word, but just go with it.
Have You Made Any New Years Resolutions? What Are Your Goals or Intentions For 2014?
- 1 apple, peeled, cored and cut into ¼-inch pieces
- 2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour; more as needed
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder (non-aluminum if possible)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 7 tablespoons cold Earth Balance buttery sticks, cut into pieces
- 1/3 cup apple butter
- 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons full fat canned coconut milk
- full fat canned coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/3 cup icing sugar
- 1 tablespoon apple butter
- 1 1/2 teaspoons coconut milk
- Position a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 400°F. Line at baking sheet with parchment.
- In a food processor or large bowl, blend the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. If using a food processor, add margarine and pulse until only pea-sized pieces remain; alternatively using two knives, cut the margarine into the flour mixture until a few pea-size lumps remain. Put mixture in a large bowl and stir in apples. Whisk together the apple butter and 3/4 cup coconut milk, add to the flour and gradually stir until the mixture just comes together, add additional tablespoons of coconut milk if needed. The dough should hold together when squeezed but not be wet.
- Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and pat gently into a 6-inch circle about 1 inch high. Using a chef’s knife or bench knife, cut the dough into 6 or 8 wedges. Mix together the cinnamon and brown sugar. Transfer the scones to the baking sheet, brush the tops with coconut milk and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.
- Bake until the tops are golden, 25 to 30 minutes for smaller scones and 30 to 35 minutes for larger. Transfer the scones to a wire rack and let cool.
- Mix together the icing sugar, apple butter and coconut milk. Once cool enough, drizzle over scones.